Friday, June 25, 2021

The Vision (6.25.21): Take therefore no thought for the morrow....

 


Image: Magnolia, Albemarle County, Virginia, June 2021

Note: Devotion take from last Sunday's sermon on Matthew 6:31-34.

Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof (Matthew 6:34).

The final exhortation in Christ’s teaching on dealing with worry relates to the future (tomorrow): “Take therefore no thought for the morrow….”

This verse does not exclude the exercise of prudential wisdom in planning for the future. The Proverbs offer strong exhortations against laziness and the value of planning ahead, putting in work, and accomplishing goals (cf. Proverbs 6:6-8; 20:4). Still Christ warns against excessive worry for the future, noting that “the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself.”

He then adds: “Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.” The point: There will be enough things to occupy your attention today, so that you have no need to attempt to add to today’s pile the things that you will worry about tomorrow.

Spurgeon wrote: “Today will require all the vigor we have to deal with its immediate evils; there can be no need to import cares from the future. To load today with trials not yet arrived, would be to overload it” (Commentary on Matthew, 68).

J. C. Ryle observed: “Half our miseries are caused by fancying things that we think are coming upon us: half the things we expect to come upon us never come at all. Where is our faith? (Expository Thoughts on Matthew, 61).

A popular expression related to Christ’s words is that we have to take one day at a time. Yes, it is a clich√©, but it rests on Biblical footing. If you have ever gone through a significant crisis of any sort (whether health or family related or financial) you know the wisdom of this. The best you can do sometimes is to live by faith day by day, and sometimes hour by hour, and even minute by minute (recall James 4:13-15).

Maybe you know the gospel song that alludes to this verse (I like this Alison Krauss version):

I don't know about tomorrow.

I just live from day to day.

I don't borrow from the sunshine,

For its skies may turn to gray

 

I don't worry o'er the future,

For I know what Jesus said,

And today I'll walk beside Him

For He knows what lies ahead.


Many things about tomorrow

I don't seem to understand,

But I know who holds tomorrow,

And I know who holds my hand.

 

Grace and peace, Pastor Jeff Riddle

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