Faithlife Sermons

Daily Needs

Notes & Transcripts

07/05/2009 Daily Needs Knox 16 PC

485/625/699 Psalm 23 Philippians 4:15-20 Matthew 6:25-34

OOPS! In a cemetery in England stands a grave marker with this inscription: SHE DIED FOR WANT OF THINGS. Alongside that stone is another which reads: HE DIED TRYING TO GIVE THEM TO HER.  
  UGH! David was a man on the run before he became king. King Saul sought him out to murder him, as he considered him a rival for the throne. It was hard for David not to be afraid during those years of running and hiding. It is a biblical version of the fugitive. The man is innocent and he can find no place to hide, safely. He is constantly in danger.
The people of Israel had a great deal of uncertainty, in their corporate trust of God. It seems that trust was on and then it was off. Trust to be real needs to be the solid ground on which we stand in this life until we see the reality of God in the life to come. When our life is on the line will we dare to trust and to rest in contentment.  
  Contentment for most people in our society is to have all the money they need to do all the things they want to do. How often do we crave after some of the things out there for all these highly paid athletes and executives of companies and so on? Have you ever gone into a house that is beyond your ability to buy and just sort of drool as you see all of the modern conveniences which you will never had.
Too many people spend money they haven’t earned to buy things they don’t want, to impress people they don’t like. —Will Rogers If the grass looks greener on the other side of the fence, you can bet the water bill is higher. —Laugh Book  
  Since the Lord is my Shepherd, then I shall not want. Actually the word "want" as used here, has a broader meaning than might at first be imagined. No doubt the main concept is that of not lacking - not deficient - in proper care, management or husbandry. But a second emphasis is the idea of being utterly contented in the Good Shepherd's care and consequently not craving or desiring anything more.
A man, who had few possessions but enjoyed the simple things of life, was conversing one day with a millionaire. Consumed with the passion for making money, the financier was always gathering wealth but had no time to help others or attend to the important matter of his soul. The Christian said to his friend, "You know, Bob, I'm richer than you are. I have as much money as I want, but you don't!"  
  AHA! When everything is gone, who will we trust? The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want. I have everything I need. I have all that I need. I lack nothing. The issue here for the shepherd boy, David, is trust. Indeed, it is contentment in trust.
WHEE! In those days when he was a young boy, the Lord had delivered him out of some serious trouble when he was a Shepherd. Allowing him to kill a bear and a lion with his bare hands. He showed no fear when he walked out on that field with only a slingshot and a stone and his regular clothing, to meet the champion of the Philistines, a person named Goliath.  
  Does that mean that he was never afraid? He probably had a number of fears. But the bottom line for David was it is better for me to get my discipline and my punishment from God whom I trust. All of his anxiety and all his concerns he brought to the throne of grace, to the living God. The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, the God of Jacob.
Listen to the Scriptures in Psalm 34. Fear the Lord, you his holy people, for those who fear him lack nothing. The Lions may grow weak and hungry, but those who seek the Lord, lack no good thing. An indication is made here of what David's trust was like.  
  Listen to psalm 84:11. For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favour and honour; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless. Lord Almighty, Blessed are those who trust in you.
We gain the blessings of the presence of God in our lives when we trust in him. Our goal is not to focus on all the things that are concerning us, because they would overwhelm us. Our call is to focus back in on the God in whom we find contentment. In Psalm 107 it says. Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for humankind, for he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.  
  Marianne Harris had been feeling a little sorry for herself all day. In a store, the saleslady had asked her if she qualified for the senior citizen discount. She wasn't that old--not quite. But it was hard to accept the fact that her age was showing, especially since she worked so hard at trying to look young. Later in the day she went to see her friend Evelyn, who--although she was 90--was always upbeat and fun. Evelyn was all excited about seeing the pictures from Marianne's son's wedding. She had to use a magnifier and hold the photos up close to her face in order to make out anything in them, but she carried on a lively conversation the whole time.
Marianne wished she knew Evelyn's secret but hesitated to tell her why she was feeling down. Instead she asked, "Does the magnifier help?" "The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away," the older woman said smiling. "But what did He give you when He took away your sight?" "Acceptance," she replied triumphantly.  
  Paul has a reason to give thanksgiving. In all of his ministry he had tremendous support from the people of Macedonia. From the day that he set out for Macedonia, no other church shared with him in the matter of giving and receiving except for the Philippians. God had honoured Paul's desire to follow his call to preach the gospel in Macedonia. It was provision enough to meet his needs.
This is the apostle who writes I have learned to abound in the Lord and I have learned to be abased in the Lord. It is not that he desires the gifts of the Philippians. What he desires is that more be credited to your account. That you receive more blessings because you have acted upon your faith and your trust in God. Your gift has amply supplied me when I needed it.  
  And then he makes that profound statement. And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus. According to all the riches and the glory of the coming kingdom, God will meet all of your needs and mine. The call is to be content in the Lord, to have faith and trust, knowing that we are standing on solid ground.
In a letter to the Hebrews it is written. Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, "Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you." So we say with confidence, "The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can human beings do to me?"  
  This is playing off of what Jesus himself was saying in his ministry in chapter 6 of Matthew's gospel. Here refers to the two facts. You cannot serve two masters. You either have to choose money or you have to choose God.
And he is telling his disciples not to worry about your life or about what you will eat or drink; or about your body, or about what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes. Look how God looks after the birds of the air. They don't sow or reap. But your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they are?  
  Can anyone of you add a single hour to your life by worrying? Look at the flowers in the fields, that are here today and gone tomorrow. God has clothed them very well, what more will he do for you? Even King Solomon and all his splendour was not dressed as well as these flowers of the field. How much more will be clothe you, you of little faith?
The pagans need all of these things. Food, clothing, shelter and transportation, and God knows this. But our call is to seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to us as well. Do not be worried about tomorrow because tomorrow has enough worries for itself.  
  Each day has enough trouble of its own. What he is saying is, take one day at a time with me, and let me get you through this day. When you are feeling all alone and that life has let you down, God is still here with you! There is no one who can compare to our God.
In Romans chapter 8, Paul is making a trial position and to say how well we are treated and need to have trust in the living God. In this trial, the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit are on our side. The decision for justification by faith in Christ alone is guaranteed by our God. What then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own son, but gave him up for us all, how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?  
  Indeed, we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. And those the predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.
The bottom line? The Lord is my Shepherd and I am proud of my Shepherd. Because of him I shall not want. I shall be content in all things to trust in him for what I need. He is the one who ensures our daily bread. In him I shall remain content.  
  YEAH! The Gospel Herald told of a man who came to the place in life where he began to think of retiring. He was very wealthy, having assets which totaled more than a million dollars. Over the years this financier had paid his employees well and had contributed liberally to the church. He had not been greedy, nor had he engaged in graft; yet his bank account continued to grow. One day he said to his wife, "I'm going to stop working and spend some time enjoying myself. But I also want to be more useful and generous in supporting the work of the Lord." Not long afterward came the 1929 stock market crash. Almost everything he owned was swept away in the panic that followed. He testified later, "If I hadn't known the Lord, I would have gone to the 26th floor of my office building and jumped out of a window. Four other brokers I knew did just that." He concluded, "Because I trusted the Lord when I had plenty of money, I was equally content to trust Him when I was almost broke."
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