“Putting the Kingdom First”

Matthew 6:25-34

We are currrently reading through the sermon Jesus gave on the side of a mountain at the beginning of His earthly ministry. He was presenting them with His “Kingdom principles.” This was primarily necessary because up to this point the Israelites had been living under 613 commandment principles and they had seriously messed things up. God had come, in the flesh, to establish a new covenant with His creation. His presence on earth meant His Kingdom was also present. He had come to set the record straight and provide guidance. 

Today Jesus is focusing on priorities. His first priority is for them to keep their eyes on God. Their ultimate goal should be Kingdom living, not earthly pursuits. He’s aware that as soon as we take our eyes off Him and focus on what is around us, worry begins. 

Statement to remember, verse 25: 

“Do not worry about your life.”

Easier said than done. Every day we wake up, we are in the midst of it, life. Somehow, without even being aware, life seems to take over. 

The family needs to be fed. 

The dog needs to go outside. 

Off to work. 

Bills need to be paid. 

The family needs to be fed again. 

The car breaks down. 

Someone gets sick. 

Life doesn’t go the way we think it should, so what happens? 

We begin to worry. 

Jesus gets it. 

He is trying to remind us that we should not get so tangled up with worrying about these things, because our life just so happens to be MORE than these things. 

Jesus addresses the very three things the world is most engrossed with: 

  • What will you eat?
  • What will you drink?
  • What will you wear?

The basis for just about every commercial created, although had Jesus been speaking today He may have added:

  • What will you drive?

The backbone of how the first three of the Ten Commandments are broken, through the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye and the pride of life. 

What did Jesus mean by “do not worry”?

I think we need to recognize that we often masquerade our ungodly, untrusting sense of worry in the guise of “responsibility.” There is a difference between a godly sense of responsibility and an ungodly, untrusting worry. Jesus wasn’t saying we shouldn’t be concerned with the ultimate issues of life. He was instructing us to leave the management, and the worry, over material things with God. For Jesus, our life is more than our physical needs. We are not mere animals, we are created in His image and are called to pursue more eternal matters.  

Jesus continues in verses 26-30 with some examples and arguments against worry. He starts by looking at the birds. God is so sovereign over His creation He cares about the Black-Capped Chickadee, therefore, He will certainly care for us. It’s true that birds may not worry, however, they do work. They don’t just sit around with their mouths open expecting God to drop food into them. 

Part of the reason humans worry over the material things of life is because they do not have a true sense of their value before God. God values the birds, and God values humans. He’s got our back.

One of Jesus’ best arguments against worry is that in reality, the energy and effort put towards it accomplishes nothing. Well, not exactly true, it accomplishes stress, depression, anxiety, and I could go on with more. 

Jesus provides another example, look at the flowers of the field, He clothes it, surely He will clothe you. At the end of verse 30, Jesus remarks on our level of faith. 


The concept of having little faith will come up again. 

Jesus claims we only need faith the size of mustard seed to move mountains. Is it the size of our faith or the belief of the size of our God? 

Certainly the God of our universe is able, but do we believe He is willing to keep us clothed. Often we resort to putting our faith into our job, or our money, to keep us clothed and fed, skipping God’s involvement in the process altogether. This is what grieves the Lord. 

Why shouldn’t we worry?

Jesus answers this question by stating the Father knows our needs. He owns the cattle on a thousand hills. Not only is He able, Jesus tells us He is ready and willing. God invites us to be free of worry and anxiety over material things. 

Jesus compares those who know God with those who don’t and suggests we consider how we will tell the difference. For those of us who say we know God, shouldn’t our lives reflect so?

Jesus doesn’t just leave the worriers with an empty space where they once worried. He suggests we let go of our worry and replace it with seeking the Kingdom of God. 


Check this out, when you worry you add nothing, when you seek God’s Kingdom first, 

all these things get added to you. 


Jesus is telling us how the Kingdom of God works. When we come seeking the Kingdom of God, first, in everything we do, everything else falls into place. 

For example, you don’t have to choose between being a good spouse or being a good worker and honoring God. We honor God and seek first His Kingdom, when we are being good spouses and good workers. 

Remember to whom Jesus was first speaking. He was telling these first century believers and now us, that the focus on physical well-being was not something we should devote our lives unto. When our god is mammon then our lives will be filled with worry, and much like an animal, concerned mostly with physical needs. Instead of worry, we are called to put God’s Kingdom first, turn our focus to what Jesus would do. In return, verse 32 states,  “all these things will be given to you as well.”

What are “all these things”?

  • Heavenly treasures
  • Rest and divine provision
  • Fulfillment of God’s highest purpose for you
  • Fellowship with God
  • Being a part of His Kingdom.

Jesus concludes His thoughts on worry with some common sense. If you must worry, do so about the things you are able to adjust, the things of today, now. Most of our worry is over things we have absolutely no control over. What a waste of time and energy. Jesus tells us to keep our focus on living in the moment. He doesn’t say it is wrong to remember the past or to plan for the future, to some degree both of these are good. Just be careful as to how much energy you exert on either of them. Often we are so worried about what happened or will happen that we fail to focus on what is happening. 

God wants us to remember the past, plan for the future but most of all live in the present, with a focus on His Kingdom.

Let’s pray.