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Why Worry? God Provides

Scripture: Matthew 6:25-30; Text: Matthew 6:29

As we read these words, there are many lessons that Jesus was teaching, but the one that catches away my heart is His providential care. The providential care of our heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ is magnificent indeed. Consider the title, "Why Worry? God Provides!"

It is interesting to pay attention to the illustrations that Jesus used to teach this truth to our hearts. There are two in the verses of our scripture. (1). He used the FLOWERS, and (2). He used the BIRDS. In other words Jesus talked to us about the flowers and fowls as in the Song of Solomon 2:12. Why? Simply because He was and is the Master Teacher. Remember that this passage is part of the Sermon on the Mount. They were not inside a building as we are. They were in the great outdoors and under the canopy of heaven. As the birds flew above them, Jesus could say, "Look up at the birds. Think about God's care of them." Then He could redirect their attention to the valley below and say, "Look down at the valley and the beautiful lilies growing there. Think about how God takes care of them." So if God can care for the birds and flowers, you know that He can take care of you too.

Jesus directed their attention to the great outdoors, to help them think about God's care. It is still a place that helps people deal with the fret and fever of life. Many people seek the wide open spaces of field and forest, to get away from it all. That accounts for the tremendous interest in camping and gardening. We Americans spend millions on these outings each year. Jesus wanted the disciples and us, to understand that God is always taking care of His creation. The birds and lilies do not understand their needs, so they do not sow nor harvest into barns. Yet because God knows their needs, He provides for them. He tells us earlier in this chapter that He is aware of our needs (Matthew 6:8). Not only does He know our needs but He is able to supply them also (Philippians 4:19).

First, Jesus calls our attention to the birds and how they are divinely fed. Let me state the obvious. God takes care of the birds and we are far more important to Him than birds (Matthew 10:29 and Luke 12:7).

Second, Jesus calls our attention to the lilies and how God takes care of them. Their beauty is an obvious fact. It is the initial point of His comparison. However, their beauty is short lived. The lilies were evidentally the lilies of the valleys as in the Song of Solomon 2:1. Probably all of us have heard the saying, "Take time to stop and smell the roses." Jesus is telling us to behold their beauty. The lily of which He spoke was supposed to have bloomed radiantly for one day. They suddenly filled the valleys with a spray of color and almost immediately faded away. If you did not take time to look at them the day they bloomed, you missed their full beauty. Jesus said their beauty excelled that of kings. Specifically Solomon was mentioned, for he was a king of world wide renown. The Queen of Sheba travelled a great distance just to meet him. The idea of "arrayed" meant to dress up in his kingly attire and to present himself in his wealth and splendor (Acts 12:21). Armies would also array themselves, showing the size of their army and weaponry (1 Samuel 17:21). I suppose they hoped to frighten off the enemy. After all with the enemy running away, they became more vulnerable. (Perhaps for that reason, God gives us no armour for the back according to Ephesians 6:14-17. But even Solomon dressed in his magnificent robe and golden crown with its jewels, could not compare to the beauty of the flowers. By the way, this illustration is also botanically correct. The flower is in reality the clothing of the seed.

Then Jesus moved on to speak of their usefulness. As summer heat came, the flowers having faded, the grass withered and dried. The ovens for baking bread were fired with this dried grass. The ovens were made of clay and sat upon bricks. To get quick heat, they used the grass because it burned hot and quickly. Yet inspite of the fact that their beauty was so short and their usefulness so limited and brief, God still valued them and took care of them. Since we live so much longer and hopefully our usefulness to God and men is greater, no doubt God will take care of us too. How could we possibly doubt His care and provision, in the light of the fact that He feeds the birds and clothes the flowers? Since God takes care of the lower forms of His creation, surely He will take care of the highest of His earthly creation, man. Jesus said all this and gave these illustrations, that we might be reassured of His divine and providential care in our lives day by day.

Having set the stage and realizing that He does take care of us, let us give some study to the details of how He has done so and is daily doing it. (1). Why worry, God provides for us in CHRIST. (2). Why worry, God provides for us by His GRACE. and (3). Why worry, God provides for us daily benefits.

First, God provides for us in Christ. This is of course the greatest aspect of our care. The Bible tells us that we were chosen in Christ before the world was created. Ephesians1:4. As the elect, Christ came and died for our sins (1 Corinthains 15:3). By His sacrifical death and shed blood, we were saved (Romans 5:8-9).

The assurance of these truths is that we are saved completely for He left none of our sins to face us in eternity (Hebrews 10:10). He died for all the elect and not one of them shall be lost (John 6:39). Nothing can ever separate us from the love of God and the eternal benefits of His love (Romans 8:38-39). What a measureless blessing, to feel safe and sure as we face eternity. It cannot be attained if we are trusting in ourselves, or in anything we must do. This peace and sweet release from fear, comes only to those who know that our eternal destiny is 100% in the hands of an unfailing God. Do you trust Him that completely today? Paul certainly did (2 Timothy 1:12). You can too, if you embrace the words of Jesus and believe the teachings of the holy scriptures. I want to challenge and encourage you to read and study the Bible and rejoice in salvation by His amazing grace.

Second, God provided for us by His grace. This has already been established in part. I have addressed the part that pertains to salvation from sins. However, that is not all there is to God's grace. It is indeed a most wonderful part, but there is much more. Everything God does for us involves His grace. God's grace is His free and unmerited favor and kindness. Therefore grace is involved in saving our soul, but also in every aspect of living and serving Him. Paul as a apostle, preached the word of God and wrote the inspired scriptures. Did he take credit for his success? Not at all. In fact the opposite is true, he gave God glory for all that he had accomplished (1 Corinthians 15:10). We could all take a lesson on humility from him. So often if we do a good deed, we get the big head and gloat for a week or two or as long as anyone remembers what we did. What we should do is give praise and glory to God each time it is mentioned, because without Him we could not have accomplished it. But that is not all Paul was telling us here. He was helping us to understand that we can venture forward in faith, knowing that God is able to help us reach far beyond our personal capabilities. Sometimes we know there are many tasks before us in the service of God and humanity, but we balk and say "I can't do that." We are probably right, we cannot. However, Paul is reminding us that if God's grace is great enough to save us, it can also enable us to do great things in His service. Think about it and rely upon His grace the next time you are called upon in the service of God.

In fact God's grace is sufficient for all our needs (2 Corinthians 12:9). Think about what God was saying to Paul by that memorable statement. Paul was going through a very difficult time. He had a tremendous experience with God. He had divine revelations imparted to him, more than most people will ever experience. With all those special spiritual gifts came the tendency to gloat and become conceited. Our nature is depraved, so God allowed a "thorn in the flesh" to stick him lest he become proud and useless to the kingdom of God. However, it was not easy for him to bear. Daily there was great difficulty as the result of it. So he did what all Christians should do, he carried it to God in prayer. In fact, he prayed more than once about it. The Bible tells us that when he had prayed about it three times, God answered him. I did not say that God answered his PRAYER, but that God answered HIM. The fact of scripture is that God did not remove the problem, but instead gave him grace to bear it. There are many ways to skin a cat, the old saying goes. So there are many ways for God to solve a problem. The way we think He should solve it may not be the best way. His way is always best, so God gave Paul grace sufficient to bear the problem and that way he could remain humble and useful in the service of God. We all need to strengthen our faith so that we can trust God more.

Third, God provides for us daily benefits. Surely if God can save our immortal souls and supply the necessary grace to do His will, He can take care of us on a daily basis. Do you trust Him to do that? Jesus is reassuring us that we should. After all, God loved us more than the birds and flowers, for His sent Jesus to die for us and not for them. He gives us grace and He has given none to them. I know His care of us surpasses even His care of them. If this were the only place in the Bible that informs us of this fact, it would be sufficient. But there are so many other places that teach us and remind us of this truth. Jesus used the fowls and flowers, but let us also look at others who have been the recipients of His care. What about Elijah and God feeding him by ravens and water from a brook. The famine persisted and God cared for him through the meager fare of a poor widow. God surely took care of Daniel in the den of lions. He also took care of the three Hebrew children in the fiery furnace. Can He take care of you in the WORST of circumstances? Of course he can, he took care of them when the world gave them its worst. The psalmist said He prepares a table even when our enemies surround us (Psalm 23:5).

Even when times are not that bad, he can and will take care of us. Jesus healed the sick, taught and comforted the discouraged and down trodden. He fed the thousands when they were hungry and even taught us to pray for daily bread (Matthew 6:11). No wonder Peter told us to cast all our care on Him, because He cares for us (1 Peter 5:7). Jobs, health, decisions to be made; yes we can bring it all to Him because Jesus said He takes care of the birds and flowers and He will surely take care of us. No wonder the psalmist reminds us of His "daily benefits" (Psalm 103:2).

Let me conclude this message with this simple reminder. (Read the text again). Jesus said that God made the flowers more beautiful than Solomon. That is the most excellent care that God gives to the lilies and His care of us is superior to that. How should this knowledge affect us? Well, first of all it should make us TRUST Him more and worry less with each passing day. If you think about it each day, it will likely do that for you. Do you suppose the birds and flowers ever worry Of course not! Nor should we. Second, it should make us want to PRAISE Him more with each passing day. Each day that we recognize His care, should be a day in which we praise Him in the depths of our hearts and say thank you Lord for your goodness. The birds and flowers are part of creation, that in its beauty and perfection renowns to the glory of God. We should want to be a part of that too. Third, we should want to SERVE Him better with each passing day. The knowledge that God cares for us should move our hearts and minds in His direction. We should be so thankful and grateful, that we gladly live for Him and serve Him in His church and kingdom. The birds and flowers do exactly what God made them to do, it is we humans who have veered from that pathway. Let us commit our lives to Him and dedicate ourselves to living as He has taught in the Bible.

May the Holy Spirit speak to each heart and apply the wonderful message our Lord Jesus Christ shared with us, is my prayer.

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This page last updated on June 7, 2014