We have heard it executed thru exigences and distorted by many preachers and teachers.
I have been looking at it as a Prophet and see that it is a clear word for today. This was a time before the destruction of Jerusalem. Jesus was preparing those who would follow him to deal with the days to come. Those days are very much like these days. Evil.
What we don't recognize is the admonitions to Trust God, Have Faith and make a demand on the provision of God in the text.
The revelation of Provision comes in part from the "Sermon on the Mount". Jesus wants us to be clear on the concept.
Here are some things he said..I take them out...to help us see that He as God Man on earth was concerned about our understanding of His provision. I don't think many in the Body of Christ yet really get this. A few. But if we were living this....there wouldn't be food stamps, link cards, section 8 or AFDC. Homelessness would be rare and intermittent. People don't need a handout, they need a heart changed by the Revelation of Provision right before their eyes.
3 “Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
4 Blessed are those who mourn,
for they will be comforted.
5 Blessed are the meek,
for they will inherit the earth.
6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
for they will be filled.
7 Blessed are the merciful,
for they will be shown mercy.
8 Blessed are the pure in heart,
for they will see God.
9 Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they will be called children of God.
Blessed means not only provided, but happy, content, at ease in the situation. Comforted by HIS provision.
13 “You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.
14 “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
Our attitude toward our situation is critical...if we mumble and complain we are not salty. If we murmur against God our light has gone out.
23 “Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, 24 leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.
Our giving must not only be joyful, but without stain. We must give in Worship and that worship must be the kind God seeks. Spirit and Truth.
33 “Again, you have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘Do not break your oath, but fulfill to the Lord the vows you have made.’ 34 But I tell you, do not swear an oath at all: either by heaven, for it is God’s throne; 35 or by the earth, for it is his footstool; or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the Great King. 36 And do not swear by your head, for you cannot make even one hair white or black. 37 All you need to say is simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one.
Be careful to NOT make promises you can't keep. If you do it will impoverish you. These are earthly and heavenly oaths. Being a person of your word is critical. This applies in finances too.
1 “Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven.
2 “So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 3 But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4 so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.
Generosity is it's own reward. A generous heart prospers the proverb says. I have never seen the righteous forsaken nor children of the righteous begging for bread. What does that mean? Read what Jesus said. BE RIGHTEOUS. Give but don't talk about it.
10 your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us today our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation,
Jesus instructs us to PRAY in our provision. He wants us to call for heaven on earth. Is there homelessness in Heaven of many mansions? Hunger. Thirst? No. AND once again...don't hold tightly too much to what is earthly. IF Jesus said to do this...do it... It's his instruction to call in heaven, to pray for provision and seek forgiveness.
But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 18 so that it will not be obvious to others that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.
Fast, and Reward Follows. Simple strategy for provision.
19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
God knows all about your pocketbook. He is LOOKING for an avenue to bless people thru. If you are that avenue, you will never go without.
24 “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.
IF you seek money you serve money. If you seek God the money will be there. This is the big deal. Our eyes must be on HIM and HIS PLAN to provide. He is all about provision.
25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life[n]?
28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
Jesus Challenges us to learn to live in eager expectation of his provision. It will show up as we open up in faith and trust. I'm afraid there are a lot of practical PAGANS in the Pew today. Running after things and money. Therefore they stay in poverty. The spirit of Poverty is the idea that I won't have enough unless I DO THIS.
1 “Do not judge, or you too will be judged. 2 For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.
6 “Do not give dogs what is sacred; do not throw your pearls to pigs. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces.
Not everyone will get this. Some will give it lip service and then fail. They will stay in poverty. Don't judge them...they just haven't got it YET. Pray that they will. Once they do, they will cease to know want.
7 “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.
9 “Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? 11 If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! 12 So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.
I don't know how to be more clear than this passage. In Malachi 3 there is talk of open windows of blessing. They are there when we are faithful. YET we must Ask Seek and Knock to enter in. Ask Father and he will provide, probably different from how you would do it. BUT He will...or you call Jesus a liar. GOOD GIFTS. This has been WAY overspiritualized.
24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. 26 But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. 27 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”
The world WILL pass away. Sooner than you think. It's the practice of these words, the ones reviewed that are the foundation on the rock. Jesus is the ROCK but HIS WORDS ARE the foundation.
This is not the whole of the revelation of provision, it's just a piece. But it's an important piece. If Jesus spent this much time on these issues of provision and then says you will stand when the storm comes IF you put them into practice, should we NOT consider carefully this revelation? I am asking that as you have read this, you consider carefully what you are and are not doing. This revelation is complex yet simple. A few people I know are living this way.
I will say to you what was said to me long ago that changed my life, "You can LIVE LIKE THIS".