In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said, “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?”
Have you ever wondered why Jesus mentions regarding what we eat, drink and wear? In considering these necessities, we might be aware of passages such as 1 Cor 10:31, Luke 17, or passages in Ecclesiastes 3, 9 as well as Romans 14 and few other places.
But I have yet to read a commentary that links the basic necessities of eat, drink and wear to the provisions in the wilderness by God for the Israelites. When we read Exodus carefully, we realize God provided the Israelites in what they ate with Manna and Quail. Also, he provided what they drank periodically through the desert. Furthermore, we read in Deuteronomy 8:4, “Your clothes did not wear out and your feet did not swell during these forty years.” And in Deuteronomy 29:5 once again it states, “During the forty years that I led you through the wilderness, your clothes did not wear out, nor did the sandals on your feet.” When we consider all these provisions, what we realize is that God provided all these in a miraculous way.
What’s the point? The point is: 1) We don’t have to worry about the basic necessities in life because when we belong to God, He will take care of us. 2) So, because God will take care of our needs, what we are called to do is to “Seek his kingdom and his righteousness,” knowing that “all these things” will be given to us.
For most of us living in America, this is a radical calling to truly follow Christ who sought the kingdom of God and God’s righteousness. I say “radical” because of the scarcity of such a level of commitment in American Christianity. Most Christians in America are willing to somewhat seek his kingdom and somewhat seek his righteousness. Some might be even willing to more than somewhat seek his kingdom and his righteousness, but they do it to “add all these things” unto themselves. It is rare to see a Christian who is purely seeking his kingdom and righteousness without the alternative motive of having “all these things” added unto them.
What would it look like if we Christians simply sought his kingdom and his righteousness knowing that God will take care of us the way that God took care of the Israelites… miraculously!
Reverend Henry Lee is the lead pastor of the English ministry at Los Angeles Full Gospel Church.