Thought For Today
Matthew 6:1 Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven. Alms: Anything given freely, especially money, to help the poor, charity. People who give alms and make sure others know about it are just as the heathen, they are looking for self satisfaction, and glory for themselves. This would not be considered giving alms, this would be trying to buy praise and glory for themselves! There will be no rewards in heaven for these people.
Matthew 6:2 Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, they have their reward. Hypocrite: A person who pretends to be something other than he is or better than he really is; one who makes a false pretense of being virtuous or religious. Don't brag about what you do to help others, for if you do you are a hypocrite looking for glory of men. And, if you are looking for glory of men, then your reward will be of men and not in heaven.
Matthew 6:3 But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth: This scripture is referring to the church which is the body of Christ. Just as the scriptures above this is telling us when we help others we are not to run to the rest of the congregation and brag about our charity to others. We are to cheerfully give to those in need secretly, and know that out Father in heaven will reward us openly.
Matthew 6:4 That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly. Same as Matthew 6:3 be charitable in secret. Not looking for the praises and glory of man.
Matthew 6:5 And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. When praying about situations especially concerning others, do not make a big deal about it by praying loudly in church, or standing on the street. This is not to say: Don't pray in church or on the street, because we should pray whenever we feel led to, but we do not have to make a big production about it in an attempt to draw attention to the fact that we are praying. To draw attention to ourselves of other men by praying loudly is being a hypocrite, and is using prayer to get the glory of men! Pray in church, pray on the street, but do so modestly so as not to intentionally draw attention to yourself in an attempt to gain self glory! Remember the rewards of hypocrites will be rewards of men not of God!
Matthew 6:6 But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly. This scripture is telling us basically the same thing as Matthew 6:5, pray not to draw attention to yourself in an attempt to gain glory of men. When praying about your personal matters, or the matters of someone who has ask you to pray do so in secret, do not pray about yours or someone else's personal matters aloud in church, or on the street, but do so in private. An example would be: Praying aloud in church about a financial problem you are having, this would be trying to tell the congregation that you need money in hopes that someone would walk up to you after church and hand you money. This is not how it is done! Pray to God the Father in secret and he will reward you openly! He will lay it on someones heart to help you with that financial problem, and it will be of God not of men.
Matthew 6:7 But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. Heathen: A person who does not acknowledge and worship the God of the bible; a person who is neither Jewish, Christian, nor Muslim; a pagan. When you pray you do not need to say the same thing over, and over. God hears you the first time. I try to ask God one time, and then I start thanking him for the answer and I continue thanking him even after the answer comes. I think this verse talks about much speaking as kind of like the devil worshippers who chant the same thing over, and over.
Matthew 6:8 Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him. Asking God for what we need is not necessary because he already knows what we need before we ask. However, I think asking God for what we need is a way for our human selves to feel like we are doing something to acknowledge our faith and belief in God, and God understands this. So I think it is ok to ask God for what we need, but do so in private, not in public!!