Let’s review for a moment and take a look at the reasons we are not to worry. The list is simple and easy to remember – We are told NOT to worry because (1) He commands it, (2) He cares for YOU, (3) He controls your “cubits”, (4) He clothes creation with beauty, (5) He conforms you daily to Christlikeness, (6) He can be trusted, and today’s addition to our list (7) He is cognizant of your needs! (How’s that for finding enough words that begin with “c” for my list?)
There is a therefore , and it is there for showing us that we don’t need to worry. Jesus is teaching us that because of all these things He has just talked about, we really don’t have to worry. After all, it only does harm to worry, right? We do not need to be concerned about the daily needs we have (things like clothing, food, or drink). He also takes the time to let us know that if we are consumed with worry about these daily needs, we are doing what the “gentiles” do. The word Gentile here means peoples or nations, any non-Jew. Jesus uses it in this context to mean pagans. People outside of God’s kingdom and family. The word is used to denote those without faith. It is the pagan non-believers who lack faith completely and live only to chase after things. It is their motto to “Eat, drink, and be merry; for tomorrow we die!” They believe that No One cares for them and so they live to themselves (“If it doesn’t hurt anyone it’s okay!”)
So if we worry about these things, we are doing what those without faith do! Again we see that faith is at the heart of the matter. The Gentiles believe that they need to please themselves – instant gratification – and so they live to that end. How sad to miss the fact that the Heavenly Father loves each of us enough to have sent His Son to die for us on the cross – the “gentiles” fail to see any meaning or purpose to life, least of all service to a loving Creator.
I like the end of verse 32 especially for today – God already knows what we need. He doesn’t say that it’s wrong to need or want food, drink, or clothing (basic necessities). As a matter of fact, Jesus tells us that God knows what we need. He is cognizant (aware) of what we need. He “knows that you need all these things.”
So the things aren’t the problem, it’s the priority that is the problem. If we have faith we realize our dependence on God for everything – life, peace, faith, joy, forgiveness, as well as food, clothing, and drink – He will provide everything we need. The things though aren’t His concern. He cares about our attitude – the things we seek and chase after. Just because we need something doesn’t mean that the need has to overwhelm our thoughts and desires.
We can take comfort today that we have faith and that God knows about what we need. He knows. Trust Him. And obey Him – once again He started this verse with a command – “therefore, do not worry.” I will say it again – trust Him – and you can’t trust Him if you don’t know Him – take the time to get to know Him better today.
Don’t live like those who have no faith and only live for self – instead, be overcomers in the faith – and take the victory over worry that He has given us. We are more than conquerors – in Greek that phrase is hypernikos. It can be broken down into two words “hyper” and “nike” – yes that’s right, nike! Nike in Greek means victor – and hyper means more than or “hyper”! So in Christ we are hyper nikes – more than victors – through Him that loved us and gave Himself for us. Don’t worry – trust Jesus!
Once again, remember the seven reasons we are not to worry.
(1) He commands it – Psalm 37:7-8
(2) He cares for You – Isaiah 49:16
(3) He controls your “cubits” – Psalm 139
(4) He clothes creation with beauty – Psalm 19:1-3; 21:5
(5) He conforms you daily to Christlikeness – Lamentations 3:22-23
(6) He can be trusted – Psalm 19:9; 20:7
(7) He is cognizant of your needs – Psalm 139:2-4; 73:11