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Daily Devotional

August 17

A First Book of Daily Readings

by D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (selected by Frank Cumbers)

Seek ye first the kingdom of God

[Our Lord] says: You are concerned about these other things, and you are putting them first. But you must not. What you have to put first is the kingdom of God and His righteousness. He ... said that, in the model prayer which He taught these people to pray.... You come to God. Of course you are interested in life and in this world; but you do not start by saying, ‘Give us this day our daily bread’. You start 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.’ And then, and only then, ‘Give us this day our daily bread’. ‘Seek ye first’—not ‘your daily bread’, but, ‘the kingdom of God and his righteousness’. In other words, you must bring yourself to that position in mind and heart and desires. It must take absolute priority over everything else.

... our Lord ... is telling [His hearers] how to behave because they are Christian. They are in the kingdom of God, and because they are in it they are to seek it more and more. They are, as Peter puts it, to ‘make their calling and election sure’ ... as children of our heavenly Father, we should be seeking to know Him better. Now the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews puts that perfectly when he says in 11:6, ‘He that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him’. Put your emphasis on the ‘diligently’. Many Christian people miss so many blessings in this life because they do not seek God diligently. They do not spend much time in seeking His face.... The Christian is meant to be seeking the face of the Lord daily, constantly. He takes and makes time to do so.

Studies in the Sermon on the Mount, ii, p. 143

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