WHY TAKE YE THOUGHT FOR THE REST???
Jesus throws out a list of interrogations to this man to whom this was just one of the interrogation questions given. The man was obviously a covetous, wealth seeking, prosperity driven person who wanted Jesus to help him get more of the inheritance that his brother was in control of dividing.
Jesus was obviously angered at the covetousness of this man. The man totally missed seeing the provision of God, the attitude of God of helping provide for the needy. Yet, this man’s goal was for the building up on his own wealth, with no consideration for the needs of others. He had missed understanding the heart of God.
13 And one of the company said unto Him, Master, speak to my brother, that he divide the inheritance with me.
14 And He said unto him, Man, who made Me a judge or a divider over you?
15 And He said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man's life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth.
16 And He spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully:
17 And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits?
18 And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods.
19 And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry.
20 But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?
21 So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.
22 And He said unto his disciples, Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on.
23 The life is more than meat, and the body is more than raiment.
24 Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feedeth them: how much more are ye better than the fowls?
25 And which of you with taking thought can add to his stature one cubit?
26 If ye then be not able to do that thing which is least,why take ye thought for the rest?
27 Consider the lilies how they grow: they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.
28 If then God so clothe the grass, which is to day in the field, and to morrow is cast into the oven; how much more will He clothe you, O ye of little faith?
29 And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind.
30 For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things.
31 But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you.
32 Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom.
33 Sell that ye have, and give alms; provide yourselves bags which wax not old, a treasure in the heavens that faileth not, where no thief approacheth, neither moth corrupteth.
34 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
This man wanted Jesus to get involved in a dispute over the estate of the father of the two sons. Notice the man’s attempt at getting Jesus to help him get more riches:
And one of the company said unto Him, Master, speak to my brother, that he divide the inheritance with me.
Is it not amazing that finances plague our minds so much. We worry, fret, and plan and plan. We are seeking to provide for retirement so much, we do not enjoy life now. We lay up in our barns for tomorrow, and ignore the needs of our neighbors today. Often, the one with the best retirement portfolio, dies and leaves it to the unwise children to waste.
This man was having a family dispute over money. Whether he was justified in thinking his brother was cheating him out of his share of the inheritance, we do not know. Jesus did not even care to hear the story to decide. But, in the midst of this deep discussion of how to avoid the leaven false doctrines of the Pharisees, this man’s mind was on the financial dispute with his brother.
"He that hath ears to hear, let him hear."
This statement is found 8 times in the Synoptic gospels. (Matthew 11:15, 13:9, 43; Mark 4:9:23, 7:16; Luke 8:8, 14:35). It shows that Jesus realized that some do not listen to the truth when it is spoken. To find hearts hungry to hear, is getting rarer and rarer. Some hear the truth, but do not truly hear what is being said. They listen, or seem to be, and yet, they do not truly hear.
Jesus is giving great and valuable principles to keep our doctrines to be Godly. This specific situation would have been a distraction to the thousands here to hear Jesus. So, Jesus refuses to answer the question, but deals with the heart issue that is the cause of all those money disputes of life.
Jesus first interrogation is a bit confusing, until He further explains His distaste:
And He said unto him, Man, who made Me a judge or a divider over you?
Jesus probably shocked this man, when He said ‘who made Me a judge or a divider over you?’ The Pharisees would have jumped in, as would many a minister of today, and told him how to get the most from his brother that he could, and would then probably have prophesied over him that if he wanted that amount to grow, it needs planted as a ‘seed’ in their lives. After the $38 (or whatever) offering, they would promise that all his children would be saved, and he would never get sick again. Of course those kind of words are not from God, for God never takes away one’s free will to choose, and never will take away the fact that this body will age, sweat, and slowly die till the rapture and the new body. God does not sell healings, either, for they were paid for in the atonement.
Jesus, instead, gets to the heart of the problem, and preaches here, in this part of the sermon, some things you never hear from many ministers of today. Nor did the Pharisees then preach it, for the leaven doctrines that they added were contrary to this teaching.
The point of Jesus’ upset at this man’s attempt to involve Jesus in something that was totally foreign to Jesus’ way of thinking, and totally unlike God’s heart is summarized in this verse:
And He said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man's life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth
Covetousness is forbidden.
Exodus 20:17 (KJV)
17 Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour's.
Matthew 6:19-21 (KJV)
19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:
20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
Ephesians 5:3 (KJV)
3 But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints;
So, since it is forbidden, many other names have been given to it. Many Scriptures have been twisted to justify the covetousness with the new name. We are told that Jesus needs us to all get rich to finance the next revival. We are told that riches are part of salvation, and we need them now, not when we get to heaven. We are told that multi-mansions, multi-luxury cars, and clothes that cost a fortune, are indicative of holiness. Where do they get such ideas? Not from Jesus.
Hatred of covetousness is one qualification of leaders, civil and religious.
1 Timothy 3:1-3 (KJV)
1 This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work.
2 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach;
3 Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous;
1 Peter 5:2 (KJV)
2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;
Covetousness will damn the soul.
1 Corinthians 5:11 (KJV)
11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.
Covetousness must be mortified from our person.
Colossians 3:2-7 (KJV)
2 Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.
3 For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.
4 When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.
5 Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry:
6 For which things' sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience:
7 In the which ye also walked some time, when ye lived in them.
Covetousness is a sin that brings many other sins to be more likely. Greed and murder have happened due to covetousness. Oppression, violence, and injustice are sins bred by covetousness.
Covetousness was in Eve when she ate the forbidden fruit. It was in Lot when he chose the best lands that Abraham had right to have. Esau desired and tried to keep the birthright promised by God to Jacob. Balaam was willing to curse Israel for the rewards. Achan took goods from Jericho, due to covetousness. The rich young ruler preferred his riches rather than to be a disciple of Jesus and have eternal life. Judas betrayed Jesus for silver. Covetousness is still shaming many lives.
And He spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully:
This parable is an illustration that life does not consist of earthly possessions,
This ‘certain rich man’ may have been represented by many in this huge crowd, and probably many of them were the Pharisees.
Jesus knows the thoughts of all of us, and reveals what kind of thoughts the covetous person has:
And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits?
Laying up treasures here is the goal of many who call themselves Christian. Surely it is wise to not waste our income, and to have in store some to pay bills, and provide for emergencies. Yet, many go far beyond that. They want more and more.
Our goal in life needs to be far more spiritual than the mammon oriented lifestyle. This ‘certain man’ had fruits, which is the Greek word, karpos (G2590), meaning harvests from the trees, vines, and fields of vegetables and grains. He had worked to have these fields, so they were not ‘ill-gotten’ gain. They were truly his, but his goal was totally self centered, and there is not mention of concern for others who were not as blessed.
Covetous person scheme and plot to get more and more. They are never happy, no matter how much they gain. Notice Jesus’ revelation of how covetous persons think:
And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods.
And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry
This ‘certain man’ was even talking to himself. He is totally thinking of a life of ease and luxury. The ‘eat, drink, and be merry’ was not the lifestyle of our Lord when He came, and He commands us to have our minds on evangelizing, interceding, caring for souls. The blessings Jesus allows in our lives need invested in our true work, in winning souls, in making disciples. Our true treasures are in heaven, these treasures here are meant to be used for His glory.
God has an interrogation for covetous persons:
But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?
Jesus calls this man a ‘fool’. He is senseless, not thinking with the mind that the Lord wants in us. We are told to ‘let this same mind be in you, as was in Christ Jesus.’
Philippians 2:5-8 (KJV)
5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:
7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:
8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
God has this right and power to do anything He wants. This certain man of the parable, dies that night. Our end may come sooner than we plan. We may have plans and goods laid up to live till we are too old to enjoy this life. Yet, the Lord can call us home at any time. The best preparation for such event is to lay up our treasures where we are going, for that home is eternal.
Jesus has to make plain what He wants, was not fighting over estates, and its possible addition to wealth, but in seeking to be rich in God;
So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.
We need to be rich toward God, not just rich in the eyes of our ‘financial planner’. We do need a ‘financial Planner’, and His name is Jesus. In fact, here in this sermon, He is laying out His plan.
Jesus admonition, yes, command, to this man, and to all of us yet today is:
And He said unto his disciples, Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on. The life is more than meat, and the body is more than raiment.
These verses 22 and 23 are so foreign a thought to most today, that ministers in pulpits can hardly be ever accused of preaching this. It is not a verse you will see on the wall of an investment counselor, and still it is far more truthful than all his advice on the stock market.
WE NEED CONTENTMENT WITH HEAVENLY GAIN.
1 Timothy 6:6-12 (KJV)
6 But godliness with contentment is great gain.
7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.
8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.
9 But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.
10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
11 But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness.
12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.
Jesus saw the potential for Judas to have been a great apostle, and for a while, he was. Judas had preached, had cast out devils, had laid hands upon the sick and seen them healed, and once had devotion to the Lord. Yet, it was a divided loyalty, part love for Jesus, and part love for money. Judas had a chance, for he had three years watching Jesus heal the sick, resurrect the dead, teach the ignorant, and love the unloved. Judas had seen marvelous and miraculous deeds, had witnessed miracles uncountable. His discontent was due to a love for money, the filthy lucre of the world. That lack of contentment lingered in his mind. This seed of wickedness overcame all the teaching of Jesus that he had heard. Judas allowed his tainted relationship with the Lord to make him become a damned soul. He had not destroyed every ounce of sin in his life. He held onto one vice, a manageable vice, he thought. Judas was wrong. That one vice that he hated to give up, damned his soul to hell-fire.
Some in ministry today, are facing the battle of sins unconquered in their own lives. The constant battle between their love for following Jesus, and their desire to yield to that temptation to sin is a seemingly never ending battle. Ministers are human, are normal people, with normal temptations. All have and all will fail in this life, Peter did, James and John did, etc. So will ministers in our day. Yet, what will be the ultimate winner? Jesus or our sinful self? Are we going to be content with what the Lord provides for us, or is our lack of contentment going to blind us to the right paths we are to walk?
We see prosperity preachers today on television, in church pulpits, in their radio sermons. Imagine the INTERROGATION of Jesus to them, if they would only open their spiritual ears!!!