SynopsisOne way to sum up the last few passages would be to say that Jesus has been talking about “true religion”—something that comes from the heart, and is not about outward appearances. In this passage, Jesus moves on to the topic of worry.
Actually, I like the NIV translation of that last verse even better:
Therefore do not be anxious, saying, “What shall we eat?” or “What shall we drink?” or “What shall we wear?” For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. (verse 34 (NIV))
ThoughtsThe first thing to note about this passage is the very first word that Jesus uses, in verse 25: “Therefore:”
Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on…” (verse 25a (ESV, emphasis added))That tells us that Jesus has not abruptly changed subject. This is a continuation of what Jesus has already been talking about, and what he is about to say is a direct result of what he has already said. And what has Jesus just said? Let’s look back at the passages we’ve looked at, in Chapter 6:
- Do good deeds to please your Father, not just to be seen by others (verses 1–4)
- Pray from the heart, to your Father, not just to be seen by others (verses 5–15)
- Fast because you want to worship God, and be closer to Him, not so that others will see you and think that you’re holy (verses 16–18)
- Lay up for yourself treasures in heaven, not here on earth (verses 19–24)
But if God so clothes the grass of the field … will he not much more clothe you …? Therefore do not be anxious … But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow… (portions of verses 30–34 (ESV))Jesus isn’t pretending that these needs don’t exist; he’s pointing us to the God who loves us, and is able to provide for us, and telling us that we “therefore” do not need to worry. What we should be concerned with is seeking the kingdom of God, and His righteousness, and letting Him worry about our needs.
But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? (verse 30 (ESV))Ouch! “O you of little faith”—that’s Jesus’ summary of us, when we worry. We don’t have enough faith in the God who has promised to supply our needs. If God is going to supply our needs, then we don’t need to worry—unless we think that He is not capable of it. Or unless we think that He was lying, when He said that he’d supply our needs. But if God is all powerful, and if God never lies (Titus 1:1–4 (ESV)), then there is nothing to worry about; nothing to be anxious about. We have to have faith in Him.