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Matthew 6

6
Doing Good Deeds Secretly
1“Be careful not to do good deeds in front of other people so that they’ll see you. If you do that, you won’t get any reward from your Father in heaven.
Giving to People in Need
2“When you give to people in need, don’t announce it by having trumpets blown in front of you. That’s what the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets because they want people to notice them. Truly I tell you, that’s all the reward they’ll get. 3But when you give to people in need, don’t let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. 4Then your Father, who sees what you do in secret, will reward you.
Prayer
5“When you pray, don’t be like the hypocrites who love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on the street corners so that other people will see them. Truly I tell you, that’s all the reward they’ll get. 6When you pray, go into your room, close the door, and pray to your Father, who can’t be seen. Then your Father, who sees what you do in secret, will reward you. 7And when you pray, don’t keep talking on and on like the people who worship other gods. They think their prayers will be answered because they’ve talked so much. 8Don’t be like them, because your Father knows what you need even before you ask him.
9“Therefore, pray like this:
“ ‘Our Father in heaven,
may your name be honored.
10May your kingdom come—
may your will be done on earth
as it already is done in heaven.
11Give us today our daily bread,
12and forgive our sins,
just as we forgive those who sin against us.
13Don’t let us fall into temptation,
and save us from the evil one.’
14If you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15But if you don’t forgive other people, your Father won’t forgive your sins.
Fasting
16“When you go without eating, don’t look all sad like the hypocrites. They make strange faces so that people will notice that they’re fasting. Truly I tell you, that’s all the reward they’ll get. 17But when you go without eating, refresh your hair with olive oil and wash your face. 18Then no one will be able to tell that you’re fasting. Only your Father, who can’t be seen, will know it. And your Father, who sees what you do in secret, will reward you.
God and Money
19“Don’t try to get a lot of riches on earth, because moths and pests can destroy your things there, and thieves can break in and steal them. 20Instead, make sure you have a lot of riches in heaven, because moths and pests can’t destroy anything there, and thieves can’t break in and steal anything. 21Wherever your riches are, that’s where your heart will be.
22“The eye lets light into the body. If your eyes are healthy, your whole body will be full of light. 23But if your eyes are unhealthy, then your whole body will be full of darkness. If the light inside you is darkness, then it’s really dark!
24“No one can serve two masters. Either you’ll hate the first and love the second, or you’ll be devoted to the first and not care about the second. You can’t serve both God and money.
God Knows What You Need
25“So I’m telling you not to worry about your life, what you’ll eat or drink, and not to worry about your body, what you’ll wear. Isn’t there more to life than eating? And isn’t there more to the body than clothes? 26Look at the birds of the air. They don’t plant or harvest crops, and they don’t put grain away in barns. But your heavenly Father feeds them. Aren’t you worth much more than they are? 27Can any of you add even one hour to your life by worrying?
28“And why do you worry about clothes? See how the wild flowers grow. They don’t work or make clothes, 29but I tell you that not even Solomon in all his royal robes was dressed as well as one of these flowers. 30If God dresses the wild grass so well, even though it’s here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, isn’t he even more likely to make sure that you have clothes? You have such little faith! 31Don’t get all worried and say, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ 32People who don’t trust in God are concerned with those things. But your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33So be concerned about the kingdom of God first, and do what he wants you to do, and all those things will also be given to you. 34Don’t worry about tomorrow—let it worry about itself. Each day has enough troubles of its own.
6
Giving
Jesus said:
1When you do good deeds, don't try to show off. If you do, you won't get a reward from your Father in heaven.#Mt 23.5.
2When you give to the poor, don't blow a loud horn. That's what show-offs do in the meeting places and on the street corners, because they are always looking for praise. I can assure you that they already have their reward.
3When you give to the poor, don't let anyone know about it.#6.3 don't let anyone know about it: The Greek text has, “Don't let your left hand know what your right hand is doing.” 4Then your gift will be given in secret. Your Father knows what is done in secret, and he will reward you.
Prayer
(Luke 11.2-4)
Jesus continued:
5When you pray, don't be like those show-offs who love to stand up and pray in the meeting places and on the street corners. They do this just to look good. I can assure you that they already have their reward.#Lk 18.10-14.
6When you pray, go into a room alone and close the door. Pray to your Father in private. He knows what is done in private, and he will reward you.
7When you pray, don't talk on and on as people do who don't know God. They think God likes to hear long prayers. 8Don't be like them. Your Father knows what you need before you ask.
9You should pray like this:
Our Father in heaven,
help us to honour
your name.
10Come and set up
your kingdom,
so that everyone on earth
will obey you,
as you are obeyed
in heaven.
11Give us our food for today.#6.11 our food for today: Or “the food that we need” or “our food for the coming day”.
12Forgive us for doing wrong,
as we forgive others.
13Keep us from being tempted
and protect us from evil.#6.13 evil: Or “the evil one”, that is, the devil. Some manuscripts add, “The kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours for ever. Amen.”
14If you forgive others for the wrongs they do to you, your Father in heaven will forgive you.#Mk 11.25,26. 15But if you don't forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins.
Worshipping God by going without eating
Jesus continued:
16When you go without eating,#6.16 without eating: See the note at 4.2. don't try to look gloomy as those show-offs do when they go without eating. I can assure you that they already have their reward. 17Instead, comb your hair and wash your face. 18Then others won't know that you are going without eating. But your Father sees what is done in private, and he will reward you.
Treasures in heaven
(Luke 12.33,34)
Jesus continued:
19Don't store up treasures on earth! Moths and rust can destroy them, and thieves can break in and steal them.#Jas 5.2,3. 20Instead, store up your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy them, and thieves cannot break in and steal them. 21Your heart will always be where your treasure is.
Light
(Luke 11.34-36)
Jesus continued:
22Your eyes are like a window for your body. When they are good, you have all the light you need. 23But when your eyes are bad, everything is dark. If the light inside you is dark, you are in the dark.
Money
(Luke 16.13)
Jesus continued:
24You cannot be the slave of two masters! You will like one more than the other or be more loyal to one than the other. You cannot serve both God and money.
Worry
(Luke 12.22-31)
Jesus continued:
25I tell you not to worry about your life. Don't worry about having something to eat, drink, or wear. Isn't life more than food or clothing? 26Look at the birds in the sky! They don't plant or harvest. They don't even store grain in barns. Yet your Father in heaven takes care of them. Aren't you worth more than birds?
27Can worry make you live longer?#6.27 live longer: Or “grow taller”. 28Why worry about clothes? Look how the wild flowers grow. They don't work hard to make their clothes. 29But I tell you that Solomon with all his wealth#6.29 Solomon with all his wealth: The Jewish people thought that Solomon was the richest person who had ever lived. wasn't as well clothed as one of them.#1 K 10.4-7; 2 Ch 9.3-6. 30God gives such beauty to everything that grows in the fields, even though it is here today and thrown into a fire tomorrow. He will surely do even more for you! Why do you have such little faith?
31Don't worry and ask yourselves, “Will we have anything to eat? Will we have anything to drink? Will we have any clothes to wear?” 32Only people who don't know God are always worrying about such things. Your Father in heaven knows that you need all these. 33But more than anything else, put God's work first and do what he wants. Then the other things will be yours as well.
34Don't worry about tomorrow. It will take care of itself. You have enough to worry about today.