An Attack Against Anxiety (Matthew 6:25-34) by Bro. Glen Guevara

So according sa isang medical website, ilan daw sa mga physical symptoms..ilan daw sa mga physical symptoms ng anxiety ay rapid breathing, light-headedness, dizziness, abdominal pain, indigestion, chest pain, insomnia at headache. Now ilan lang yan sa mga negative effects sa ating katawan kapag umatake na ang anxiety o ang matinding pag-aalala sa buhay ng isang tao. However, in our text today, we will see that Christ, the Prince of Peace will turn the tables. It will unmask anxiety and reveal its true colours and He will also give it a fatal blow. King Jesus will strike an attack against anxiety. Our text for this morning is Matthew chapter 6 verses 25 to 34. Matthew chapter 6 verses 25 to 34. Hear now the words of the Living God. “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. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 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? 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. May the Lord add blessing to the readers, hearers and doers of His word.

We are now in the last portion of chapter six in our study of the Gospel of Matthew. And again, the book was written to persuade its readers that Jesus Christ of Nazareth is the long-awaited King who will save His people from their sins and who are destined to rule and reign over their lives. So ang isang tao ay niligtas na ni Hesus mula sa kanyang mga kasalanan, at siya at isa nang citizen ng kaharian ni Kristo, paano ba dapat siya mabuhay? Paano mabuhay ang isang citizen ng kingdom ni Kristo? Now, sinagot ito ni Matthew by presenting the sermon of the King and that is famously called The Sermon on the Mount. This portion covers chapter 5 to chapter 7 of the Book of Matthew. And this in his sermon, King Jesus proclaimed the identity of His disciples; that is, they are now children of their Father in Heaven. And He also instructed them how they must live in the present age in the light of that new identity. Now, if a disciple truly understands his new identity and the instruction of his King on how he must live, then that understanding will also alter or change his goals and priority in life. He will stop building his own kingdom in this world. Hindi na siya mabubuhay para sa sarili niyang kaharian. Rather, that disciple will seek to be useful and he will live for the kingdom of Christ his saviour or as Matthew 6 33 says he will seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness. Now the Lord already anticipates na kung ang isang tao ay mabubuhay para sa Kaniya, maraming hadlang at maraming distractions na kakaharapin ang taong iyon. Kaya naman in the beginning of chapter six, Jesus Christ exposed and breaks these walls that hinders a disciple in his pursuit to live for the kingdom of God.

So what are these distractions for a disciple of Christ? And we can see three of them in Matthew chapter 6 and I want to to credit Daniel Doriani for pointing this out. Una, makikita natin yung unang hindrance in verses 1 to 18, nadaanan natin ito in the last weeks.. and that is the hindrance of living a life only for the praises of men. This hindrance makes one a hypocrite. This is an ugly hindrance dahil yung mga bagay na dapat ginagawa natin para sa Diyos tulad ng prayer, giving and fasting ay nadidistort para sa ating mga selfish ambitions. Now mahihirapan mamuhay ang isang tao para papurihan si Kristo kung ang tanging nais niya para sa sarili ay papuri ng ibang tao. Ganyan din ang sabi ni Paul sa Galatians 1 verse 10 If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.

Now the second hindrance is called Materialism. That is a life lived only to gain material wealth. Makikita naman natin yan sa verses 19 to 24 we have heard last week, we cannot serve the true God and the false god of money Mammon both at the same time. Now living solely for material wealth makes one a greedy worshiper of money. Now that is very incompatible para sa isang disciple ni Christ. Since Christ must be his treasured possession who is worthy of his wholehearted devotion. Imposible na maging kayamanan ng isang tao si Kristo kung ang pera ang tinuturing niya na Diyos. And now, the last barricade that we can see in chapter 6 is living a life that is controlled by worry or anxiety. Now in its original language, the word anxiety means to destruct, to divide, to draw to different directions. At sabi pa ng isang commentary, anxiety is the state of being pulled apart. Now notice that this idea is connected dun sa huling sentence in verse 24.. you cannot serve God and money. You can’t! So if a disciple has resolved in his heart that he will serve God wholeheartedly, then the underlying question of his life would be who will take care of my needs? Sino ang magpo-provide ng mga daily at legitimate needs na meron ako taking mga pamilya? Or in other words, the words of Matthew 6 31, what shall we eat, or what shall we drink, or what shall we wear? Now we must take note that the problem here is not, it’s not that we have needs, hindi yun yung prublema. Meron naman talaga tayong mga needs. But the problem here is the overthinking, the anxiety for those needs to the point where we are tempted to revert on running back to Mammon, to the god of money just to have fake security.

Now a disciple might be caught in an endless cycle of thinking: I want to serve God but I’m tempted to serve money, to secure my needs. I want to serve God but I’m tempted to serve money to secure my needs..paulit-ulit. Now that disciple is being pulled apart. He is being born between two masters.. by definition, he is being anxious. And when the Lord challenges disciples that they cannot serve two masters, he already knew that by His grace, His true disciples will choose to serve Him. But He also knew that they are prone to worry about their needs. Kaya naman, idinugtong Niya agad ‘therefore, after the challenge Niya, after the challenge na binigay Niya, you cannot serve both God and money, therefore I tell you do not be anxious about your life. Now kapag sinabi mo yan sa isang tao na nag-aalala, sinabihan mo siya, huwag kang mag-alala, usually lalo siyang mag-aalala ano? Unless, unless my basis yung encouragement mo sa kanya. Meron kang pruweba bakit hindi siya dapat mag-alala. And in verse 33, we see the basis of Christ’s command not to worry. And it is a promise, a promise that He will provide all our needs if we choose to serve Him. Yan ang pangako ng Panginoon. Kung nais at kaya Niyang ibigay lahat ng needs natin sa buhay, then there should be no place for anxiety. Pero, truth be known, madalas nakakalimutan natin ang pangako na yan. We are so prone to worry. It is a daily struggle. Yes, even to us believers. Kaya naman pinakita sa atin ng Panginoon how to deal with our hearts that is so inclined to anxiety.

And the initial thing that we must see is this: anxiety is a hindrance. Anxiety is a hindrance. Mahihirapan tayo talunin yung kalaban kung una pa lang, hindi o alam na kalaban pala siya. And anxiety is a subtle enemy. Most of the time, hindi na natin ito napapansin, o di kaya, hindi na lang natin ito pinapansin. Hindi natin ito nakikita na hindrance to fulfill our primary priority. Kaya hinahayaan na lang natin ito na guluhin yung buhay natin. But note brethren and friends, when we are anxious, we will either become mediocre in serving our God or worse we might be tempted to serve Mammon, the god of money once again para lang magkaroon ng false sense of security. Either way, we must see that worry distracts and hinders us from serving Christ and that is our message for this morning. Anxiety Distracts The Disciples Of Christ From Fulfilling Their Primary Priority. Ang pagkabalisa o pag-aalala ay nakakagambala sa mga alagad ni Hesus upang matupad ang kanilang pangunahing prayoridad.

So now that we know that Christ marks anxiety as a distraction for us to serve God, paano naman natin ito lalabanan? First, we must see it’s foolish nature. we will tackle that on our first point, Anxiety Is Absurdity. But we are not just commanded to stop worrying. We are also commanded to cultivate our pursuit of our God-ordained objective, and that is to seek God’s kingdom and His righteousness first. Titigan naman natin yan sa ating second point the Primary Priority.

So tignan po natin yun unang punto, Anxiety Is Absurdity. Now also throughout our text, makikita natin yung paulit-ulit na command ng Panginoon na do not be anxious, do not be anxious ,do not be anxious. It is a repeated command, it is repeated three times in our passage and we need repetitions like this dahil sobrang repetitive at stubborn din ang ating anxious hearts. Now every time that it is repeated, the command is supported by logical reasons and lifelike illustrations. Now this shows that worrying is not based incorrect thinking, incorrect reasoning. And also it is not trusting God’s care and ability to provide. In short, anxiety or worry is foolish.

Now let us see how the Lord artfully attacks anxiety. Now in verse 25, dun natin makikita yung unang logical reason not to worry and that is this. If God is able to give you the greater provisions like life and body, then why do you doubt Him if He can give you the lesser needs like food and clothing? Kung yung buhay at katawan mo ay kayang ibigay ng Diyos, yung pagkain at damit mo pa kaya? Now doubting God’s ability to provide is illogical. Word is illogical.

The next one is in verse 27, meron ding another reason doon not to worry. At ito yun: anxiety adds or accomplishes nothing, nothing. Sabi nila para ka daw nagro-rocking chair and you’re doing something but you are not going anywhere. Now kabaligtaran ito ng pangako ng Diyos. You see sabi sa verse 33, He will add to us all our needs. On the contrary, itong worry doesn’t add anything to our lives. Actually, it subtracts, it consumes time, energy and resources. Now doing something that consumes you and doesn’t add anything to your life is foolish. It is foolish.

Now the third reason is found in verse 34. It is absurd to worry about what will happen tomorrow. It is absurd. Why? Because una, it spoils your focus for today’s service for God. Iniistorbo yung pagsisilbi mo ngayon, ngayong araw na ito sa Diyos. O, nandito ba kayo ngayon? Nagwo-worship ba tayo? Baka kung anu-ano ang iniisip nyo para bukas. Dinidistorbo kayo ng worship ninyo, okay. And the second one is you are wasting time thinking on something that may never happen. It’s foolish. It’s absurd. And now does that mean na hindi na tayo magp-plan or hindi na ba tayo magp-prepare? Absolutely not! But know brothers and sisters that there is a great difference between planning for the future out of obedience to God and excessively planning for tomorrow that is motivated by fear and anxiety. Merong malaking pagkakaiba iyon mga kapatid.

Now those are some potent logical reasons not to worry. But let us say that you are someone who is more inclined to visual images. Ang sabi nila mas active daw ang right brain mo, yung creative side mo and maybe you are not attracted to logical arguments. Don’t worry, for the Lord will also teach you how not to worry. And that is by giving lifelike illustrations. In verses 26 to 30, he says look at the birds of the air. Nag-aalala ka ba? Tignan mo yung mga ibon. Consider the lilies and the grass of the field, tignan mo yung mga damo, tignan mo yung mga bulaklak. Now ginamit ng Lord sa Kaniyang illustration yung mga most common things that they see in their time. Para sa tuwing makikita nila ito, agad nilang maaalala yung teachings ni Christ about anxiety. And Christ taught here that our Heavenly Father through His providence, cares for this lesser creatures. He feeds the birds, He clothes the grass of the field. And then after teaching that, Christ gives a heart melting question for His disciples, and what is that? Are you not of more value than they? Now kung may pakialam, kung may care at kung nagp- provide ang Diyos para sa mga ibon, para sa mga damo, na madalas hindi natin pinapansin dahil sobrang less, sa paningin natin lesser nature sila, sa iyo pa kaya na anak Niya, kung ikaw ay kabilang sa kingdom ng Panginoon. Tayo pa kaya na anak Niya?

Now we see here that anxiety is not just doubting God’s ability to provide, it is also doubting if He cares to provide for His children. Anxiety is absurd, illogical, foolish and it minimises God’s all-powerful ability to provide. His always providence over creation and His all-loving care for His children. Ganyan kapangit ang anxiety, ang pag-aalala. Ang nakita natin na itong anxiety ay nagb- branch out, nagsa-sanga-sanga into different kinds of sin and foolishness. Pero saan ba nagmumula ito? Saan ba galing? Ano ang ugat ng anxiety? At naroon yan as verse 30. Tinawag ni Hesus ang mga tao na nagwo-worry as people who who have or who are having little faith, oh you of little faith! Now makikita natin ang implication doon na ang pagiging anxious ay nagmumula sa kakulangan ng pagtitiwala sa pangako ng Diyos, kulang ang tiwala asa pangako ng Diyos. Faith deficiency is the mother of absurd anxiety. Ang magulang ng mangmang na pag- aalala ay ang kakulangan ng pagtitiwala sa Diyos. And on the other hand, ang pagiging peaceful, either pagiging peaceful or pagiging worried ng ating isipan ay nakadepende sa condition ng ating faith sa Panginoon, depende sa pagtitiwala natin sa Kaniya. Now, consider this for a moment; let us say na hiniram ng best friend mo yung cellphone mo. Sabi niya for emergency purposes daw. Sobrang kailangan niya pero ibabalik din daw niya bukas. Now dahil may tiwala ka sa kaniya, (may tiwala ka ba sa bestfriend mo) na hindi ka niya nanakawan at gagamitin niya sa tama iyong telepono, you will not worry and you may even sleep well habang nasa kaniya yung cellphone mo. Why? Because you deeply trust your bestfriend, you deeply trust your best friend. But let us say merong isang random stranger tapos same request. Sabi niya hihiramin niya yung cellphone mo at ibabalik niya rin bukas. Now, what will you do? Of course you will not give your phone, you must not give your phone. But for the sake of the illustration, sabihin nating naawa ka sa kaniya tapos binigay mo yung phone mo. Ginamit naman niya ng tama yung phone at ibinalik niya rin sa yo kinabukasan. Pero here’s the question brothers and sisters and friends: ano yung condition ng isipan mo habang hawak nung taong hindi mo kilala yung cellphone mo? What’s the condition of your mind? Ofcourse you will be worried. You are anxious. Why? Because you don’t trust that random stranger. You see, nakikita natin dito yung dependence ng ating pag-aalala kung gaano tayo nagtitiwala sa isang tao. We see here that your calmness or anxiety is dependent upon your trust to a certain person. Mas marami kang tiwala, mas kalmado ka. Pero pag wala kang tiwala, mas kabado ka, okay.

Therefore, at its root, ang pagiging worried ng isang kristiyano ay naka-ugat sa kakulangan ng faith, kakulangan ng tiwala niya sa kaniyang Diyos. Of course since we are created both body and soul, maraming maaaring may ibang external factors that may intensify someone’s anxiety like for example lack of sleep or hunger. Now, hindi rin dapat nating pabayaan na lang yung ating physical health but we must understand that anxiety at its root is a spiritual issue. It is born out of the lack of faith in God. Now Paul Tripp calls this lack of faith even among Christians Functional Atheism, Functional Atheism. Ganito niya dinescribe ang sakit o kasalanan na ito and I quote. “We believe that God exists, that He created the heavens and the Earth, that the Bible is accurate, and that paradise awaits. But we often live at a functional level as if there is no God, as if there is no God.” At ano raw ang resulta nito? Ano raw ang resulta when we live in this kind of mindset or attitude? And Paul Tripp continues and I quote: “We worry too much, we control too much, we demand too much, we regret too much. We run after God replacements too much. We do all these things because we have forgotten, nakakalimutan, we have forgotten God’s presence, power and glory.” Now the Lord knows na ang bawat isa sa atin will struggle against anxiety that is rooted in faith-deficiency. Dahil bakit? Ano’ng dahilan? Dahil madalas nating nakakalimutan kung sino ang Diyos natin. Nakakalimutan natin kung sino ang Diyos natin. Madalas tayong nag-aalala dahil hindi natin inaalala ang Diyos na nangako na ibibigay Niya lahat ng pangangailangan natin. Nakakalimutan natin ang mga verses like Philippians 4 19. and my God will supply every need of yours according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. Nangako Siya na ibibigay Niya ang lahat ng kailangan natin..paniwalaan mo kapatid. Naniniwala ba tayo dito sa salita ng Diyos?

At ganun din ang kabaligtaran. Pag hindi Niya ibinigay, paniwalaan mo rin na hindi mo iyon kailangan. Pero bakit natin kayang paniwalaan, bakit dapat nating paniwalaan yung pangako ng Diyos na ibibigay Niya ang lahat ng needs natin? Romans 8 32 “He who did not spare His own Son but gave Him up for us all, how will He not also with Him graciously give us all things?”Anong sabi dun sa verse? Yung Kaniya ngang Anak ay ibinigay na Niya para maging greatest provision para sa sa ating greatest need. Our greatest need is to be saved from our sins and from God’s wrath. Kung ibinigay na ng Diyos Ama ang pinakamamahal Niyang Diyos Anak to live a perfect life, to die on the cross in our place for our sins, and to resurrect after three days. He gave Christ as the greatest provision for our greatest need of salvation. Kung yun ang greatest provision ay ibinigay na ng Ama, ano pa yung mga lesser provisions for lesser needs? Ano ang hindi kayang ibigay ng Diyos. There is no lesser need that God is not able to provide for His people. Now pero kung nandito ka ngayon at hindi mo pa tinatanggap ang greatest provision ng Panginoon para maligtas ka sa iyong mga kasalanan, bago ka humingi ng kahit ano pa mang bagay, hingin mo muna na iligtas ka Niya. Mag-respond ka sa tawag ng Diyos. Magsisi ka sa iyong mga kasalanan at manampalataya ka na tanging si Hesus lamang ang greatest provision na makapagliligtas sa iyo. Pero para aking mga kapatid, kung nagtitiwala ka sa mga pangako ng Diyos that He will provide all of your needs, then ano’ng gagawin mo sa mga hawak mong anxieties? Ano’ng gagawin mo sa mga worries mo? Now if you want to receive God’s provision with open hands, then you’ve got to throw to Him your worries and anxieties that are currently in your hands. Or in the words of First Peter 5 6 to 7, humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God casting all your anxieties and all your cares on Him because He cares for you. Yung word na casting, binabato mo, binibigay mo sa Panginoon.

And that is our first challenge brethren: humbly cast your cares to the God who cares for you. Humbly cast your cares to the God who cares for you. Ibato mo sa Panginoon ang mga worries at anxieties mo. Pero ano ang hitsura noon, practically speaking? What does it look like practically? Philippians 4 verse 6 do not be anxious about anything but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. Paano raw ba natin ibinabato ang mga alalahanin natin? Ang mga worries natin sa Diyos? By prayer and supplication with thanksgiving. Now, tinuruan tayo ng Panginoon sa Kaniyang Lord’s Prayer to ask God both for our physical and spiritual needs. Hingin natin yan lahat sa Panginoon. Both are physical and our spiritual needs at magtiwala tayo sa Kaniya.

Now what is the result when we humbly cast our cares to God? It is found in the next verse of Philippians chapter 4. “and the peace of God which surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and. your minds in Christ Jesus.” That is the opposite of worry, having the peace of God. Yan ang ibibigay sa iyo ng Lord kung ibabato natin sa Kaniya ang mga alalahanin natin through prayer. Pero heto ang prublema natin mga kapatid. Here’s our problem: instead of casting our cares to God by praying, ano ang ginagawa natin? We hold on to them. We hold on. Kinakapitan natin yung ating mga alalahanin. Ayaw nating ibigay sa Diyos. Ayaw nating ipa-alam sa mga brethren na makakatulong sa atin. Why? Because of our pride and lack of faith. Now, imbes na humingi tayo ng tulong sa Diyos, sinasarili natin yung mga prublema natin kaya ayun, mas lalo tayo nagiging anxious. Mas lalo tayong nag-aalala. At alam niyo, mga kapatid, walang exempted sa temptation na iyan. Kahit si Martin Luther na isang Reformer, at kilala pa siya sa pagiging matiyakin, eh Dumanas din ng matinding anxiety.

Sa isang pagkakataon, sobrang tindi raw ng anxiety at depression ni Luther kaya pinayuhan siya ng mga kaibigan niya na lumayo muna for awhile for a change of air daw, baka daw yun ang magbigay sa kaniya ng relief. So sinunod niya yung mga kaibigan niya, lumayo siya. Pero pag-uwi niya, ganun pa rin, malungkot pa rin siya dahil sa kaniyang mga anxieties. Na pag-uwi niya sa kaniyang bahay, nakita niya ang kaniyang asawa na si Katharine von Bora at ang kaniyang mga anak. Nakasuot sila lahat ng itim na mga damit. Ginagamit nila yung itim na damit na yun para, pag sila ay nagluluksa o pag may namatay. At tinanong ni Luther si Katharine, sino ang namatay. At sagot naman ni Katharine, hindi mo ba nabalitaan? Patay na ang Diyos. So sabi niya, hindi magiging ganyan ang pag-iisip mo. Hindi ka magiging ganyan ka-anxious kung nagtitiwala ka sa isang buhay na Diyos. At after nun, nahimasmasan si Luther, he came to his senses at sabi niya, “napakatalino mong asawa, titigil na ako sa aking pag- aalala.” So we see from that story na tuwing sinasarili natin ang ating mga worries and anxieties, e para bang sinasabi natin sa buong mundo na ‘there is no God who is infinitely able to provide and lovingly care for our needs.’ Dear brethren, may we not neglect that kind of message to the world by living a life that is dominated by the absurdity of anxiety. Instead, may we trust His promises and cast our anxieties to Him. Now, a disciple of Christ must not only stop worrying and then do nothing else. HIndi lang iyon ang command, no! The purpose of breaking the wall of anxiety is to focus on pursuing our primary priority, and that is our second point, Primary Priority.

Makikita natin in verse 33 the clear command for those disciples who desire to serve Christ the King and that is to seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness. Now it’s good to take note na yung word na “seek” dito sa passage na ito, means single-minded focus. Total opposite ito ng word na “anxiety” which means to be divided or to be distracted. And he also gives us, the Lord also gives us our objective, we are not to seek or run after worldly possessions like those who don’t belong to the kingdom of Christ. Instead we are to seek His kingdom and His righteousness first. Now ano’ng ibig sabihin noon? To seek first God’s kingdom means to desire that God’s rule and reign would manifest more and more over all creation. Naalala natin yung Lord’s Prayer, now to seek God’s kingdom first is to seek the answer to the first three requests in the Lord’s Prayer. It is a desire for God’s name to be hallowed, it is a desire for His kingdom, for God’s kingdom to come, and for His will to be done on Earth as it is in heaven.

Now there are so many implications that may come out of that. Maraming pwedeng implications ang lumabas doon. For example, I will just give a few… to seek God’s kingdom first means that you would want the gospel to advance and see Christ. See the King saving His people and ruling in their hearts. Pangalawa, you would also want the church to be sanctified, to be conformed to the image of their King para mas makita yung paghahari ng Diyos in His church. Pangatlo, you will also see that God would sanctify your personal life para maging useful ka sa Kaniyang kingdom purposes. Pang-apat, and yet at the same time, you will also long for the return of the King Himself where the full manifestation of His kingdom over all will be fulfilled.

Now there are so many other implications aside from those, but the main idea is the same: to seek first God’s kingdom is to desire and prioritise that His rule and His reign over all creation might be manifested. Makita, makita natin yung paghahari ng Diyos sa buong creation. Now how about seeking God’s righteousness first? Ano ang ibig sabihin noon? It means that you see, pag ginagamit ni Matthew ang word na righteousness sa kaniyang, lalo na dito sa Sermon on the Mount, he is pointing out sanctification, conformity to the character of God the Father, okay. So ibig sabihin, we must prioritise the pursuit of our growth in our conformity to the character of our God the Father. Practically speaking, it is seeking to conform one’s life to the standard of righteousness revealed in The Sermon on the Mount. Merong standard na ipinakikita sa atin ang Sermon on the Mount and our assignment is to conform to that standard, and by implication to the whole Bible, okay. So yun dapat ang priority ng isang alagad ni Kristo. Ang mag-grow in holiness as it is taught in the scriptures.

Now if we collect our thoughts, makikita natin dito that to seek first God’s kingdom and righteousness means focusing on prioritising, una, God’s name to be hallowed our lives to be holy. God’s name to be lifted up and our lives to be sanctified. Yan ang prayoridad ng isang alagad ni Kristo. Ang sambahin at maitaas ang Pangalan ng Diyos at mag-grow siya sa holiness, maging banal ang kanyang buhay. Now, makikita natin na ibang-iba ang priority na yan ng mga tao na hindi nagsu-submit sa kaharian ni Kristo. Yun ang sabi sa verse 32. Ang mga bagay na hinahabol ng mga Gentiles, it pertains to those people who don’t submit to the kingship of Christ. Ang mga bagay na hinahabol nila ay yung mga bagay lamang dito sa mundo. Now we see here that the disciples of Christ and those of the world have an opposing set of priorities. Magkaiba ang kanilang mga goals. Now it means na kung magkaiba ang prayoridad natin sa mga tao na hindi naniniwala kay Kristo, huwag nating pilitin na gayahin ang mundo. Huwag natin hayaan na sila yung magdikta ng ating mga priorities mga kapatid. Now this world will continue to entice us to live for money, to live for popularity, to live for false security, to live for anything else… just don’t live for Christ. Yun ang kanilang sermon, yun ang preaching ng mundo. And that message is rampant, all around us in various kinds of media, movies, music. Kung anu-anong forms ng media. Yun ang sinasabi sa atin. Huwag kang sumamba kay Kristo. Huwag mong unahin si Kristo. Unahin mo ang ibang bagay.

Now, maybe not end up like Demas. Kung before, isang esteemed fellow worker of Paul along with Mark and Luke, makikita natin sa Philemon na binabati siya ni Paul in the lines of Mark and Luke. Imagine, kahanay niya yung mga Biblical authors na ito in serving Christ. But sadly, paglipas ng ilang panahon, Paul wrote Demas, because he loved this world has deserted me and has gone to Thessalonica. Ganyan talaga ang nangyayari when people have opposing priorities. They will go on their separate ways. And as for Demas, he failed to fulfill the command of Christ to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness at ang inuna niya ay yung mga bagay sa mundo. May we not think that we are exempted from that temptation brothers and sisters. This world will be more and more enticing, more and more tempting and it will give us false promises, and it will seem like that they want what is best for you. They watch your best life now. But don’t be deceived dear brethren, this world does not seek your good. Instead, it seeks to use you, to abuse you and to throw you out when they’re done with you. But the good news is this: there is a true King that promises to add to you all your needs; not just your physical needs, not just your material needs but most of all, most important of all your spiritual needs. There is a King that seeks your own good and the proof that He really cares for you is this: He already laid down His life so that you might have eternal life. He already received the wrath of God so that you might escape the punishment of God. He’s none other than our King, our King Jesus who is the good King that seeks the good of His people. But the question is this: will you still for the world that deceitfully promises your good but gives you nothing? Or will you serve and live for the King who have already proven His love and His care for you through His sacrificial death and victorious resurrection and even right now, He promises to provide for you all of your needs? That is the last challenge: may we seek first the kingdom of the King who seeks our own good. Yun sana ang unahin natin. Yung kaharian ng Hari na ang nais ay ang ating kapakanan.

Now that is only possible if you, if you already saw how the Lord cares for you. Kung nakita mo na ang care ng Panginoon, doon mo hahanapin ang Kaniyang kaharian. And may that securing love and care of Christ along with His promises to provide all of your needs, cast away all of your anxieties and fears and give you freedom to prioritise the objectives given by Him.

Pero kumusta ba ang ating mga priorities, mga kapatid lately? Ano ba ang inuuna natin? Does it align to the commands of Christ to seek first His kingdom and righteousness? Or are we still seeking the things of the world? As first John says: are we still seeking the lust of the eyes? Are we seeking the lust of the flesh? Are we seeking the pride of life? Know brethren that when our hearts desire for these worldly things, it is always rooted in a deception, in a deception that says that the offer of the world is better than the loving care of Christ. Yun yung deception na pinaniniwalaan natin everytime na inuuna natin ang mundo. Mas pinaniniwalaan natin na nais ng mundo na mapabuti tayo, which is not! It is Christ who lovingly cares for you. Don’t believe the lie of the world brethren. It is Christ, your King that truly cares for your soul. Serve the King, serve the King that truly cares for you. But also know brothers and sisters, that if you serve Him, it doesn’t mean na magiging magaan na parati yung buhay natin. Na wala nang prublema, na parati na lang na may provision, no! There will still be times of difficulty. Actually, most of the time, we will face afflictions if we choose to follow Christ. But there will be, uh there will even come a time that where we need to let go of some opportunities in order to prioritise the kingdom of God. But this is the promise of God: He will give all of our needs, all of our needs.

Tignan natin ang buhay ni John Fawcett. Naligtas si John Fawcett dahil sa pagp-preach ng gospel ni George Whitfield. And soon, siya rin ay nag-preach ng gospel at noong 1765, he was called the minister sa isang maliit na..maliit at mahirap na Baptist Church sa Wainsgate Yorkshire. Now pagkatapos ng pitong taon, nakatanggap siya ng invitation to become a minister sa isang sikat at malaking church noong mga panahon na iyon. Ang pangalan ng church ay Carters Lane Church in London England. So nag-preach siya ng kaniyang farewell sermon sa maliit na church in Wainsgate. Naihanda na niya yung mga bagahe niya, yung mga baggage niya at yung pamilya niya ay ready na umalis. Now after that, bago sila umalis, biglang nag-iyakan yung buong congregation. They begged John na kung puwede, huwag na lang siyang umalis. Now at the end, at the end of dun sa mga exchange nila ng usapan, the love and the tears of the church prevailed. At sinacrifice ni John ang napakagandang opportunity para mag-minister sa malaking church sa London para patuloy na maalagaan itong small, poor but very devoted flock Sa Wainsgate. Pinagpalit niya yung yaman at kasikatan para masunod ang kaniyang Panginoon. At hindi yan madali mga kapatid. Hindi madali na gawin yan. Kailangan natin ng kalakasan. We need a strength that is sustained by our God for all of our days para ma-fulfill natin yung primary priority na ibinigay sa atin. And sometimes it will cost us our comfort, our wealth, at alam iyan ni John Fawcett. Actually, na-express niya sa isang mga, sa isang kanta o composed hymns niya yung mga katotohanan na iyon. That he needs the strength that comes from Christ para siya ay ma-sustain.

Babasahin ko yung lyrics ng kaniyang ginawa: Afflicted saint to Christ draw dear, your saviour’s gracious promise here. His faithful word you can believe that as your days, your strength shall be. That as your days your strength shall be. Now, may we hold on to that promise that God will truly provide all of our needs. Whether iyon ay spiritual need, material need or gaya ni John Fawcett – even the strength for day-to-day life. And may that equip us, believing that promise made that equip us to pursue our primary priority which is to seek first God’s kingdom and righteousness.

Now King Jesus promised that He will provide all the needs of His people holding on to this promise enables us to focus on our primary priority to seek God’s kingdom and righteousness first and not to be distracted by worldly anxiety may the Lord help us to live according to His word.

Let us pray. Our Father in heaven, Panginoon, maraming salamat po sa Inyong pangako na ibinigay para sa inyong people. That Lord, you will truly provide for all of our needs. Tulungan Niyo po kaming manampalataya sa pangako na ito. Tulungan Niyo po kami na magtiwala sa Inyo at Lord, as we trust You God. May our fears, may our anxieties ay ma-wash away Lord God ng pagpapatibay Mo sa aming pananampalataya. Lord, help us to look to Christ, na kung Siya Panginoon ay naibigay Mo na para sa aming greatest need, what more yung mga lesser needs namin dito sa mundo. Tulungan Niyo po kami na makita ang katotohanan na ito. At Lord, hindi lang makita, kundi, ipamuhay namin oh, God. Maging totoo sa aming mga buhay ang katotohanan ng Inyong salita. Lord, tulungan Niyo po ang bawat isa na i-cast away yung aming mga worries, ibato sa Inyo, ibato sa Inyo ang aming mga alalahanin. At ganun din po Lord God. Tulungan Niyo po kami Lord God na unahin ang mga prayoridad na ibinigay Niyo po sa amin. Marami pong salamat Oh Lord. In Jesus’ Name we pray, amen.


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