I READ AN old fable about a man who met Death on the road to town one morning. When he recognized the Dark Specter, he cried out, “What are you doing HERE?!” Death ominously replied, “I’m going to take one hundred people with me today.” The man said, “A hundred people—that’s terrible!” “That’s just the way it is,” said Death. “It’s what I do.” The man in panic turned around and rushed back in the direction of the borough to warn everybody that Death was on his way. When evening fell, the man met Death yet again, this time as he was heading out of town. “You told me that you were only going to take ONE HUNDRED people this morning!” the man protested. “So why did a THOUSAND die?!” Death replied, “I kept my word.” “I took only one hundred people. Worry took the other nine hundred…”
Brethren, worry can kill—emotionally, physically – and yes, worst of all, spiritually. Our English word translated “worry,” actually comes from the German term that means “to strangle, to choke.” If you take a moment and think about it, worry is (have you got your seatbelt on?), a form of self-murder.
When we worry, we’re strangling ourselves. When our minds are overwhelmed with apprehension and doubt, we’re asphyxiating ourselves in the spirit realm. When our hearts are filled with anxiety, we’re cutting off the life-giving oxygen supply to our souls (cf. Prov. 12:25).
Think of worry as a type of slow suicide.
When Jesus says something once, wouldn’t you agree that we ought to pay attention and obey? Well, in Matthew 6:25-34 our Lord actually says the same thing THREE times. Watch:
- v. 25—“Therefore I say to you, do not worry…”
- v. 31—“Therefore do not worry…”
- v. 34—“Therefore do not worry…”
“Do not worry about WHAT, Lord…?” Notice what He says.
“About your LIFE, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on” (v. 25b). Read that again. “Your L I F E…”
Worry ultimately says, “Jesus, I can trust you to save my soul, but I can’t trust you to take care of my LIFE” (i.e., my most basic needs—like food, shelter and clothing). Worry says, “Jesus, You’re impotent.” Worry says, “Jesus, You’re not big enough to handle my real problems.” Worry says, “Jesus, You can calm the storm on the sea, but You can’t quiet the tempest in my heart.”
Think about that tonight before you pillow your head, dear Christian.
“Do not worry…”
Jesus said it three times—and just maybe He said it over and over because we’re hard-headed and need to hear it more than once.
Never forget: Jesus owns EVERYTHING (Psa. 24:1), Jesus controls EVERYTHING (Dan. 2:20-21; 1 Chron. 29:12), and Jesus provides EVERYTHING (Gen. 22:14; Phil. 4:19).
Online sermon on worry from the West Huntsville church: https://westhuntsville.org/sermons/jesus-teaching-on-worry/