Don't Worry about Life? (Mt. 6:25)
One of the advantages of memorizing God’s Word is that it forces us to really think about what a verse says. For example, when you realize what Matthew 6:25 is really saying, it’s a pretty incredible statement. Christ warns his followers not get worried about their life. The ESV has “do not be anxious” while the KJV has “take no thought.” Both are translations of the Greek word merimnao, which means to think about something over and over again because you’re anxious about it.
That Christ says not to be anxious is perhaps not incredibly surprising, but then he gets specific. He tells people not to get worried about the little things in life, like what you are going to eat and what you are going to wear. In a society where food and drink are fairly easy to come by, and where we worry about whether our clothes are new or hand-me downs, the situation Christ is addressing seems strange.
Christ told a parable about a landowner going to the marketplace and hiring men to work for the day (Matthew 20). At one point, he comes to the marketplace at the end of the day and sees that with only an hour left in the workday, several men are still standing around with nothing to do. This type of situation was not unheard of in ancient times.
It’s likely that some of the people listening to Christ didn’t have a guaranteed source of income. It’s possible that some of them had recently not known where they would get their next meal, or that they had to skip meals because they didn’t have the money. How in the world could Jesus simply say to them, “Don’t worry. Don’t allow your mind to get stuck on repeat with anxious thoughts.”
If we aren’t even supposed to worry over the most basic necessities like food and clothing, then there isn’t ever an excuse to worry! In no situation do we need to allow our minds to become overworked and exhausted trying to figure out what job we are going to get, or how the rent will get taken care of, or if that rattling noise is going to be a $500 repair. While God wants us to be responsible, we are not to worry. Why? Because our good Father in heaven already has all of these issues taken care of.
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