Seeking the Kingdom First: Luke 12:13-34

Focus Passage: Luke 12:13-34 (NASB)

For this journal entry, let’s look at a misconception that many people have about what God promises to give us when we follow Him. The headline for this passage is often something like the “Parable of the Rich Fool” for the first part, and then “Teaching about Money and Possessions” for the second part. With that frame of mind, many people latch on to the following two verses as a promise from God:

For all these things the nations of the world eagerly seek; but your Father knows that you need these things. But seek His kingdom, and these things will be added to you.” (Verses 30-31)

Looking out into society, we see nations and individuals seeking fame, power, prominence, glory, wealth, security, as well as a number of other things. Since we just read the headline and have a frame of mind that this must be talking about wealth and stuff, then these verses must then be promising us both if we seek His kingdom.

However, while the passage does open with the parable of the blessed, stingy fool (he would have not needed to build bigger barns had God not blessed him with an abundant crop), Jesus then begins to frame how we should view our money and our stuff, and what really matters. Jesus tells the disciples:

“For this reason I say to you, do not worry about your life, as to what you will eat; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. . . And which of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life’s span? If then you cannot do even a very little thing, why do you worry about other matters? . . . And do not seek what you will eat and what you will drink, and do not keep worrying. For all these things the nations of the world eagerly seek; but your Father knows that you need these things. But seek His kingdom, and these things will be added to you.” (Verses 22-23, 25-26, 29-31)

The context of this promise is that God promises us food, clothing, and peace, and He will give these things to us when we seek His Kingdom as our number one priority. Money, status, fame, or luxuries are not included in this list. While God may bless some people with one or more of these things, there is no promise that He will do so for everyone.

Instead, we should be grateful for what God has blessed us with; we should seek Him and His kingdom into our lives; and we should seek to use what He has blessed us with in ways that would please Him. Gratitude is where we should begin, because one big truth I see between the lines in this passage is that when we are grateful for what God has done for us, we won’t be as inclined to worry about what will happen next.

This thought was inspired by studying the Walking With Jesus "Reflective Bible Study" package. To discover insights like this in your own study time, click here and give Reflective Bible Study a try today!

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