10 March 2010

Jesus Teaches about Who People of the Kingdom Serve

"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
 “The eye is the lamp of the body; so then if your eye is clear, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light that is in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!
 “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.
"For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they?
 “And who of you by being worried can bad a single hour to his life? And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith!
 “Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’ For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
 “So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own..."  Matthew 6:19-34

After Jesus warns us about doing 'acts of righteousness' for praise from our fellow man instead of for our relationship to our heavenly Father, he continues more pointedly on the subject of divided loyalties.  After asking us to be honest about why we give, why we pray and why we fast, he now asks the more pointed question:  Who do you serve? 
This is the key question because who we serve determines how we live.  What do we want?  Jesus teaches that our hearts determine our reality.  What do we long for?  What do we dream about?  What is our heart's desire?  Where do our hearts direct our eyes?  What do we see?  Jesus teaches that our eyes are indeed the windows to the soul.  What do we focus on?
What do I want?  To be happy, content, joyful, loved, respected.  I think everyone has these same desires.  It is inbuilt in all of humanity.  This is not hard to believe since we are all made by our Creator.  The question then becomes how will I get what I want.  Will I trust the one who did not consider equality with God something to be grasped but took the form a servant or will I just do it and grab what I can when I can?
I said before that Jesus speaks here about divided loyalties.  Jesus teaches there is no such thing as divided loyalty.  For sooner or later, a choice will have to be made.  Either we will serve God or we won't.  Jesus warns that when we do not serve the King fully, we will not serve Him at all.
Can Jesus be any clearer than this?  Being a Christian is not a matter of intellectual superiority but of complete and utter trust in Jesus the Son and God the Father.  That's all.  What do I spend my money on?  How do I live?  What are my hopes and dreams?  What do I repeatedly look at?  Am I trying to keep up with the Jones or to keep up with Jesus?
Seek first His kingdom and His righteousness and all of my needs will be met.  Do I really trust that to be true?  

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