Sermon # 15 Series: Matthew
Title: A CURE FOR CARE
Text: Matthew 6:19-34
Subject: The Inconsistency of Worry With Faith
Date: Tuesday Evening – October 4, 1994
Tape: # Q-52
I want to begin my message tonight with five statements I heard Bro. Mahan make in a message he preached a long, long time ago. Like barbed arrows, they pierced my heart I wrote them down because I don’t ever want to forget them.
1. We have entirely too many fears for a people to whom the Lord has said, “Fear thou not; for I am with thee; be not dismayed, for I am thy God; I will strengthen thee, yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.” (Isa. 41:10).
Why can’t we believe God? Has he not proven himself faithful to us? David heard God’s promise and believed him. His faith in Christ quitened his fears. He said, “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death. I will fear no evil for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me.”
2. We have far too many doubts and fears concerning God’s mercy, love, and grace for a people to whom the Lord has said, “Him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out” (John 6:37). “I give unto them eternal life, and they shall never perish” (John 10:28).
I know that some of you have trouble in this area. And I acknowledge my own shameful, baseless, sinful doubts. But I will not excuse them! On what grounds dare we call into question the mercy, love, and grace of our God? We have absolutely no reason to entertain the slightest shade of doubt! Did he not promise? Will he not perform it? “God is not a man that he should lie” - (Num. 23:19).
Mr. Spurgeon reasoned like this – “The Scripture says, “He that believeth on the Son of God hath everlasting life! I believe the Son of God. I have life!” Why should we question that ever? Paul didn’t! (II Tim. 1:12; 4:6-8).
I refuse to doubt God’s love because of something I have thought, or said, or done. His love is free and unconditional! I refuse to question his grace because of my sin. While I acknowledge the abundance of my sin, I will rejoice in the superabundance of God’s free grace in Christ. I am not going to be suspicious of his mercy because I do not deserve his mercy. Mercy is for the undeserving!
3. We spend entirely too much time grumbling and complaining about our trials and troubles for a people to whom the Lord has said, “In the world ye shall have tribulation but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).
We should not be surprised when troubles come. We ought to expect them. Every ounce of gold that has been perfected and made valuable has been refined by fire. Every diamond that sparkles with beauty has been broken out of the earth, cut by sharp blows, and polished by rough rubbing. God has chosen us in the furnace of affliction. (Isa. 48:10). He will break, and cut, and polish his jewels. “Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you” (I Pet. 4:12). Trouble is not strange. For the believer, the absence of trouble is strange!
4. We have entirely too much attachment to this world and to this present life for a people who are looking for a city whose Builder and Maker is God (Heb. 11:8-10). “We know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens” (II Cor. 5:1). The sooner, the better! We know that “to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord!” We have a desire to depart and be with Christ, which is far better. Believers are people who long to be with Christ. Yet, it is so difficult for us to turn loose of this world and this present existence. I can’t explain that. I just know it’s so.
I know this too – The only way for us to be delivered from these carnal principles, the only way we will ever be saved from our fears, concerns, doubts, grumblings, and attachment to this world is to find something better.
Illus: The Little Boy at Stalnakers’
Our religious works will be dropped like a hot potato, if we ever see and get hold of Christ’s finished work. Our boasted “good deeds” will be of no value, if we are ever allowed and made to see what Christ has done for sinners.
· His Incarnation (II Cor. 8:9).
· His Obedience to God (Phil. 2:5-7).
· His Substitutionary Death (II Cor. 5:21).
Our righteousness will appear to us as they really are, “filthy rags,” when we behold the righteousness of God in Christ. Our “goodness” will wither and die when God shows us his goodness, grace, and glory in Christ (Isa. 6:16). Find me a sinner who has seen Christ, and I’ll show you a sinner who has quit arguing about his goodness, debating over his worthiness, and fussing about the power of his will! Like that boy in the restaurant, you will drop your worthless, greasy empty corn-cob of self-righteousness, when you see the Lord Jesus Christ in his redemptive glory!
Even so, our fears, doubts, grumblings, and complaints against our little trials, against God purpose and his providence will disappear in proportion to the faith we have in his promises (Isa. 43:1-5; 46:4). The more I believe God, the less I will live in fear. The less I believe God, the more I will live in fear.
5. We have far too much anxiety, care, and fear, far too much concern for earthly, material things for a people to whom the Lord has said, “Your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.” (Matt. 6:32). It is written, “My God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Phil. 4:19). Why should I fret whom God has promised to provide? Why should I concern myself about that which God has promised to do?
Tonight, I want you to hear the message of our Lord to us in Matthew 6:19-34. Here the Son of God gives us A Cure For Care.
If we seek the kingdom of God and his righteousness, if we truly seek the will of God, the glory of God, and the kingdom of God in Christ, we have no reason to concern ourselves with earthly things.
Illus: The Queen to the Businessman – “You take care of my business, and I’ll take care of yours!
Let me show you three things taught in this passage by our Savior, and I will wrap this message up – A Warning Against Worldliness – An Exhortation To Singleness of Heart – and A Cure For Care.
I. A Warning Against Worldliness (vv. 19-21).
Worldliness is the love of this world (I John 2:15). Worldliness is conformity to the principles, aspirations, and behavior of unregenerate men. “Worldliness is a spirit, an atmosphere, an influence permeating the whole of life and human society, and it needs to be guarded against constantly and strenuously.” Griffith Thomas
One of the greatest dangers we face is worldliness. It is one of satan’s most cleverly disguised snares. It seems an innocent thing to pay close attention to business and seek happiness and prosperity in this world, so long as we avoid open sins of immorality. Yet, our Lord warns us, Worldliness is the rock on which many a man has made shipwreck of his soul!
Illus: Darvin’s house cost too much.
A. The only way to lay up treasure in heaven is to trust Christ – He is our Treasure!
B. Where your treasure is, there will your heart be – (Col. 3:1-3).
C. Learn, ask God to teach you, to look upon everything constantly in the light of eternity!
1. Value nothing here more than you will value it when you have to leave it!
2. Beware of worldliness! (Matt. 13:21-22).
J.C. Ryle wrote, “Open transgression of God’s law slays its thousands, but worldliness its tens of thousands.”
“There is no surer evidence of an unconverted state than to have the things of the world uppermost in our aim, love, and estimation.” Joseph Alleine
II. An Exhortation To Singleness of Heart (vv. 22-24).
It is impossible to serve Christ and the world at the same time. The ark of God and Dagon cannot stand in the same house. Christ must be King in our hearts, ruling over us, so that his will, his glory, his kingdom receives the devotion and commitment of our hearts. Unless our lives are so ordered, everything is confusion. “Thy whole body shall be full of darkness!”
Paul’s motto must be ours. “One thing I do” (Phil. 3:13). Decisive consecration to Christ is the secret of happiness for any believer. God help us to be a people of one thing!
· One Thing I Seek – (Ps. 27:4).
· One Thing Is Needful – (Luke 10:42).
· One Thing I Know – (John 9:25).
· One Thing I Do – (Phil. 3:13)
“Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” “Choose you this day whom ye will serve!”
III. A Cure For Care (vv. 25-34).
Our Lord knows our hearts. He knows how quickly we turn off warnings against worldliness and how easily we excuse our pursuit of earthly things.
· “Families to Provide For!”
· “So Much I Want To Do For The Cause of Christ.”
· “Act while opportunity Knocks!”
Knowing our hearts, our Lord here nips in the bud every excuse we might offer for these things.
A. He Forbids an Overly Anxious Spirit (v. 25).
Four times in these verses he says, “Take no thought.” Prudent provision and care about earthly responsibilities is right. We are to work and provide for our families. But greed, worry, and tormenting care over earthly things is wrong.
B. To Cure us of Care and Teach us to Trust Him, The Lord here reminds us of God’s providential care of everything he has created.
1. He sends us to the binds of the air for instruction (v. 26).
2. He points out the uselessness of worry (v. 20).
3. He tells us to observe the flowers of the field (vv. 28-30).
4. He tells us the earthly care is unworthy of one who claims to believe God (vv. 31-32).
5. He makes a very gracious promise (v. 33). (Rom. 8:28; Ps. 84:11).
C. In verse 34 our Savior seals up his instruction on this subject with a Universally Known and Acknowledged Fact – “Sufficient to the day is the evil thereof.”
Why carry trouble before it comes? Attend to today’s business and leave tomorrow’s worries to tomorrow’s troubles. If tomorrow comes, the Lord will be with you. If he sends trouble, he will give you grace sufficient.
Application: I Peter 5:7; Psalm 37:25
Illus: Joseph Scriven – “What A Friend!” #354
Ireland to Canada at 25 Mourning lost forces
40 years of melancholy.
“The Lord and I!”