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1759. Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread

The Daily Platform / Bob Jones University
The Truth Network Radio
April 25, 2024 5:00 pm

1759. Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread

The Daily Platform / Bob Jones University

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April 25, 2024 5:00 pm

Dr. Drew Conley continues a Seminary Chapel series entitled “The Lord’s Prayer,” from Matthew 6:11.

The post 1759. Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread appeared first on THE DAILY PLATFORM.

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Welcome to The Daily Platform. Our program features sermons from Chapel Services at Bob Jones University in Greenville, South Carolina. Every day students are blessed by the preaching and teaching of the Bible from the University Chapel Platform. Today we'll be studying Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread with Dr. Drew Conley, Senior Pastor at Hampton Park Baptist Church in Greenville, South Carolina. A great privilege to be with you today and I trust that our meditation will be one that will be an encouragement to you. God continues to train us in His ways well beyond our seminary days. As challenging as the academic rigor is and all that goes with it in these days, God doesn't quit training His kids. And so we're still in that process.

I remember not too long before my dad died, his trudging upstairs together and he said, I just thought I would be more sanctified, less carnal at this point in my life than I am. So we keep growing and we keep learning and it's often through actually the very arena we're going to talk about today that God grows us. And so we want to focus on this phrase Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread. If you're looking for an outline today, there won't be one.

So don't be frustrated that you're not finding the outline because there's not going to be an outline. We're going to kind of follow what I hope will be a logical flow of thought and be a blessing to you. The model prayer that Jesus gives His followers in the Sermon on the Mount is actually part of an overall contrast between the righteousness of the Pharisees who were considered the best examples of righteousness of the day and the actual true righteousness of those that were really citizens of that everlasting kingdom of the Messiah. In contrast to prayers that were offered to glorify self like we see with the Jews and often with any religious people and in contrast to the prayers designed to manipulate God because you don't trust Him enough to do good toward you like the prayers of the pagans of the day.

Jesus taught His disciples to pray like this. Our Father, which art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come.

Thy will be done in earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us of our debts as we also have forgiven our debtors and lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil. Our text this morning stands at the very center of this prayer.

In fact, if you actually count the English words, you have, if I counted right, 24 words before and 23 after and I think there's 25 Greek words after, 24 and 23 or 25. If the first part could be summarized as worship, prayer as worship, the second part would be prayer as reliance and this request leads off the reliance section. In other words, the very first thing that Jesus says to pray for when you're relying on God is this.

Now, I don't know about you but I find that striking. I mean, you would think that this request would almost be an afterthought for really spiritually minded people, right? But instead, Jesus puts it between your will be done and forgive us of our debts. In other words, between God's sovereign rule and our need to be forgiven for violating it.

This request right in the middle of those. So, this request teaches us truth both about God and about ourselves. It teaches us that life is more integrated than sometimes we think it is and that God's love for us extends to our bodies as well as to our souls and that our real needs that nurture healthy dependence on God are physical as well as spiritual. Jesus healed bodies, not just souls.

He fed the hungry as well as pointing people to the bread of eternal life. And so, if we take our cue from Jesus, if we take our cue really from as we read the scriptures, God's care for this part of us, we understand that God cares for all that makes us up and supplies our needs. It was actually the ancient Greek philosophers that preached the false gospel of a dualistic universe where the soul is valuable and the body is a prison. And then the Gnostics take up the theme and they divide between the evil material world and the good spiritual world, but God created both.

And God says that both were very good when he created them. When we sinned in the garden, the curse of death fell not just upon our souls, but upon our bodies. And the redemption through Christ rescues our bodies as well as our souls. So, it shouldn't surprise us then that Christ resurrects our bodies at the end of the age. Death is the enemy, and death separates body from soul. And Christ conquered death, reuniting body and soul in the resurrection. His resurrection guarantees ours.

He's not content. God is not content to save just the immaterial part of you. He's going to save all of you.

He's going to save all of us. And in our glorified state, our bodies become immortal and we still eat. Twelve kinds of fruit grow along that river leading to the throne of God. Eating was part of man's unfallen state, and eating will be part of our glorified state as well. And God's rescue of our bodies and care for them is not just future.

It actually extends to our present existence. That's why we would pray this way. He heals us. He keeps us alive. And the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit affects both our bodies and our soul.

God wove them together in an integrated whole. For instance, think about verses like this. We present our bodies as a living sacrifice to God as our spiritual, our rational service of worship. Our liturgy to God is not just what we're thinking and what we're doing on the inside, while obviously that's critically important, but it's how that translates into what we do on the outside with our bodies, how we use our fingers and how we use our feet. You know, blessed are the feet of those that carry the good news of the gospel.

Your God reigns. We praise God with physical tongues. We share the gospel with our mouths. We serve God with physical strength. We use our bodies to do works of righteousness. And when we use them for sin, we violate the very purpose for which God gave us a physical being. Think about verses like 1 Thessalonians 4, 3 and 4. For this is the will of God, even your sanctification that you should abstain from fornication.

That obviously starts in the mind, but it extends to the body. And that every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honor. So how to use my body for God is something that God cares about.

And this request helps us understand the connection between body and soul and God's care for both. God's our creator, our sustainer, the Lord of history, not just the macro history of the rise and fall of nations, but the micro history of our daily lives with all the tangle of needs, with our desires, with our labor and the reward from it. Think about what Ecclesiastes teaches us.

It teaches us about life under the sun and how to deal with living in a fallen world and the frustration of being part of an earth that's cursed and yet trying to live for God. And part of what the writer Solomon teaches us is that it shows thanksgiving to God. It brings God honor to actually enjoy what he provides.

That enjoying your food ought to be an act of worship to God. His life force is what makes crops grow and what gives strength for us to work for what we eat. There would be no seed if God hadn't created it.

There would be no harvest if he didn't give growth to it. The rain, the sun, the minerals, life itself all belong to God and are gifts of a good God to us. And God created us as those with physical needs. He placed Adam and Eve of all places in a garden.

Ever thought about that? He placed them in a garden full of food and beauty with fulfilling physical work along with the spiritual refreshment of walking with God in the cool of the day. In other words, right from the beginning in God's perfect design, he meant for these things to work together. So praying for our daily bread is more significant than what we might think. It is often the training ground of faith and it's the battleground against sin. Remember it was this very area of need that the serpent targeted. The command you shall not eat of this one tree displayed not just the authority of God but the generosity of God because all the other trees God freely gave Adam and Eve to eat as they desired.

Their food need was supplied. But Satan argued that God was untrustworthy in his warning and that God was stingy in his gifts. Satan charged that God was denying Adam and Eve what they needed to be filled and fulfilled.

It was all a deadly lie, but they fell for it. And ever since then, we their descendants have been falling for the same line instead of trusting God for our daily food and recognizing that he meets our needs, that he's not shortchanging us, that he's not cutting us off, that he's not keeping us from being fulfilled and finding what we need. How many temptations are rooted in our feeling like God hasn't given us what we actually need. Think about most of the physical temptations where Satan attacks us and draws us have to do with feeling like we have a need that God's not meeting.

And so we try to meet the need in a way that God wouldn't approve. How many give themselves to sin largely for the sake of eating better or at least indulging the body in some perceived need instead of trusting God to supply within the boundaries of his will. Satan used the human need for food in his temptation of the second Adam, the Lord Jesus. If you are the son of God, turn these stones into bread. Now Jesus is very hungry.

He's been fasting for days. And Jesus replies, it is written, man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that proceedeth from the mouth of God. Was he saying, you know, read your Bible and then you don't have to eat.

That's not what he's saying. He's quoting from Deuteronomy 8 from a passage that talks about God's supply of all the needs that Israel had, their physical needs like their shoes not wearing out and like having food to eat, manna. Israel ate manna through their 40 years of wandering through the wilderness. They ate manna because God said, I'm going to give you manna.

God chose to meet that need. The manna actually stopped after they crossed the Jordan on the very day that they first ate the crops of Canaan. Canaan was promised land. God supplied their need in the wilderness in an extraordinary way. And God supplied their need in Canaan in what we would call the normal way. But either way, God supplied their need for food. And what Jesus is saying is that God supplies our need for food.

I don't have to go outside the boundaries of God's will in order to achieve it. So how we get our food is under his jurisdiction. And Jesus, James teaches us that we should be praying if the Lord wills. We will go into a city, spend a year.

We will buy, sell, and get gain. We don't just make our plans for how we're going to eat apart from subjecting them to the will of God. However, he wants them to be subjected. Work is often difficult. And ever since the curse, we eat by the sweat of our brows. So sometimes people go hungry because they won't work. In fact, the scripture says, if you don't work, you shouldn't eat.

But even if we're working for it, as God wills, it is ultimately God who feeds us. I mean, I often think about, you know, who kept you alive last night while you were sleeping? I mean, you weren't there monitoring your heartbeat. Now beat. Beat again.

Beat again. Make sure you're breathing. Right?

You weren't thinking about it at all. I mean, it's interesting, you know, God compares death to sleep. And when we're asleep, there's a sense in which we might as well be dead in terms of the control that we have. God kept us alive. And God does that through our lives. Whatever shortage we may feel, and we do feel it at times, God designs that sense of need to drive us to Him as our ultimate provider. So when we look at this request, we realize that bringing our physical needs to God does not express spiritual immaturity, but rather it gratefully affirms that God cares about us, both body and spirit.

It expresses trust in His ability and in His willingness to supply what we need. That confidence in the reliability of God, that conviction that God is actually good is what carries us through the dark times and the difficult times. You know, we sang, you know, the Lord is my shepherd, Psalm 23, how much of that imagery there is of the Lord providing food for His sheep and protection for them and physical care. And isn't this exactly what Jesus teaches us later in Matthew 6, when He says, take no thought, don't be worried about, don't be fretting, don't make it a burdensome care saying what shall we eat or what shall we drink or wherewithal shall we be clothed. He says, for after all these things do the Gentiles seek, those that don't know God.

For your heavenly Father knows that you have need of these things, but seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you. Ever thought about for you and I to actually serve God in whatever arena He's called us to serve? Bring it down to perhaps the greatest mission of all of sharing the gospel and making disciples. We really can't focus on that the way that we ought to, if we're fretting about what we're going to eat. The world is pursuing, you know, what am I going to eat?

What am I going to wear? You know, how am I going to make ends meet? And that takes so much energy and focus and time. It distracts from the real mission of life. If my mission in life is just how much good food did I eat? I mean, think about it. You know, what did you do with your life, Drew? Well, you know, I had, you know, at least half my life I ate really well and I worked hard to make sure that it happened.

Is that it? Like, you know, I might as well be a squirrel or a worm, okay? If it's all just about eating. No, by trusting God about the eating, it lets me focus on the serving. So trusting God for daily food is one hallmark of those who belong to Him versus those who don't. And it doesn't matter whether we're living in an agricultural society or an urban one or an ancient environment or a modern one, the trust has to be there to actually serve God.

And so let's just look, it's a very short phrase, short statement, but let's just look at the words themselves. The word give, the word give. God provides for our material needs of every kind. So as much as I might feel that I'm earning my way, the reality is that God's actually giving. So we express our gratitude to Him.

We express our dependence on Him by praying this kind of prayer. That's why we can safely give generously to the Lord. In the Old Testament it would be called the first fruits. It's the first part of the harvest.

Why? Because you expected more to come. We don't farm, most of us, but as we get our paychecks, as God supplies, God intends for us to use first fruits, first of the week, give to the Lord a portion of what we've received. What are we saying when we do that? We're saying that, that God, you gave this to me and God, you will continue to supply. I trust you to do that. And God, part of the reason that you gave me what I have is so that I could do your work on earth.

I could, I could actually pass this along and use it in a way that would glorify you. So this kind of praying actually causes us to question, am I, am I getting my income? Am I providing my means of eating? Am I doing that in a way that honors the God who is actually my provider? And once he's provided, am I honoring him in what I do with that? It's amazing to me how many, as much as the Bible talks about generosity toward the poor and, and towards sustaining worship and toward advancing missions and all these kinds of things, as much as the Bible talks about that, how many believers basically think they have a pass on using the resources for anyone but themselves. It's a pagan way of thinking. It's a, it's a lack of trust in the God that supplies. Give us, give us, as we pray this prayer, we, we are praying for more than just ourselves individually. We're, we're also praying for other believers with whom we have connection, we're praying as the people of God, we're praying with a consciousness of how our life touches the lives of others.

And it reflects a generous heart for others rather than a self obsession with only my own needs. Give us this day. Tomorrow will take care of itself. We have to plan.

The fool is the one who doesn't plan. But I can only live one day at a time. And think back over your life. How much time and energy, how much sleep have you lost wasting today worrying about tomorrow?

Most of what you're worrying about never comes, let alone worrying about what's going to happen 10 years from now. When you get there, God will be there with you and God will still be supplying this day our daily bread. Bread was the staff of life, the basic diet of working men and women. And the word translated daily is used actually only once and it's here. It may mean necessary or sufficient. Obviously you determine the meaning of a word by its usage.

If you've only have one use, then it's like, what exactly is this getting at? It may mean, besides necessary and sufficient, it may mean immediately following, which we then refer to the next day. And so I like the way one man put it, the bread that we need, give us today, day after day. In other words, we're not only trusting God for today, but we're also trusting God for tomorrow, that day by day and with each passing moment, God will supply my need. Prayerful reliance on God this way can actually free us from the anxiety, even over our basic necessities. Now often we worry about things that aren't necessities, but if we're not even supposed to worry about necessities, why would we worry about anything else? Psalm 127 2, it is vain.

It's empty. It really makes no sense for you to rise up early, to sit up late, to eat the bread of sorrows, for so he giveth his beloved sleep. I can, I can sleep at night.

I can rest because of the confidence that God will supply my need. So we go back to the end of Matthew 6 and you know, he's talked about those that, that are materialistic and they show that by the way they, they treat others. They, they love mammon rather than God. And many of the religious higher ups who are well to do and well respected were very materialistically minded and yet the masses of people didn't know what life was like. And I'm, I'm sure, I doubt there's anyone here that would, would think of yourself as wealthy.

If you compared yourself to a third world country, yes, you'd be wealthy, but you're not living in a third world country. So you, you know, you know far more wealthy people and so our temptation is to worry if not to be obsessed with the things that we have. And so Jesus says, therefore I say unto you, take no thought for your life. What you shall eat or what you shall drink nor yet for your body, what you should put on is not the life more than me. Is it not more than food and the body than Raymond? Behold the fowls of the air where they sow not, neither do they reap nor gather into barns and yet your heavenly father feedeth them.

Are ye not much better than they? And that's not just my self analysis. This is God himself in the flesh saying you matter more to God than birds do and yet God takes care of birds. Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit to his stature or one cubit to his lifespan and why take ye thought for Raymond? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow, they toil not, neither do they spin and yet I say unto you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. You know, think about all that God supplies you every day.

I mean, you look out the window here. How many of us could afford to create beauty like the beauty of a, of a spring on a warm day and looking forward to the summer and the beauty of a sunrise or a sunset, just all the symphony of blessings that God brings into our life. You can't buy that and yet God gives it to us every day. Wherefore, if God so clothed the grass of the field which today is and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? Take no thought saying, what shall we eat or what shall we drink or wherewithal shall we be clothed? After these things do the Gentiles seek for your heavenly father knoweth that you have need of these things, but seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things shall be added to you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow, for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself.

Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof. So, what problems are causing you to worry today? What difficulties are robbing you of your joy and your strength to serve Jesus?

What, what has you up late at night calculating or fretting and wondering how you're going to make ends meet? Take all those concerns and lay them before the Lord who himself experienced hunger, who himself was tempted by Satan, but remain faithful through reliance on his heavenly father. Ask him, give us this day our daily bread. He has told you to come and to ask.

Let's pray. Father, thank you for the God that you are. You, your infinite greatness, your, your mighty wisdom and power is, is beyond our comprehension.

Your ways are often inscrutable. And yet, Lord, you, you enter in to the smallest detail of our lives and you put your finger on the very kinds of things that cause us the most anxiety. And you basically tell us that you know and that you will take care of us and that we need to rest in you for those things. Lord, help us do that.

Lord, it's way easier for me to talk about it here this morning than for me to practice it. And you keep testing us in these areas over our lives as we deal with different kinds of difficulties and unexpected expenses and physical ailments and the kinds of things that happen to us that sometimes reduce what we have in terms of resources. And God help us to remember our greatest resource is you. Help us to walk with you day by day. Help us to rely on you even for our most basic of needs, even our daily bread. For it's in Christ's name we pray. Amen. You've been listening to Dr. Drew Conley, senior pastor at Hampton Park Baptist Church in Greenville, South Carolina. We hope you'll join us again tomorrow at this same time as we study God's Word together on The Daily Platform.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-04-25 21:34:34 / 2024-04-25 21:44:31 / 10

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