to cut the bread, from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, Tenn. Original source.
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Treasure in Heaven
Matthew 6:7-21 Commentary
by Gerald C. Liu
“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6:21).
The aphorism is not unfamiliar for preachers. Yet how many of us have connected it to the model of prayer provided by Jesus in verses 7-13?
Jesus instructs his disciples not to overvalue the inflated language of the Gentiles, but to pray with simplicity because God already knows what they need before they ask. His prefatory remarks have an economic dimension to them by implying that worthwhile prayers unfold efficiently and come straight from the heart. Though Matthew 6:21 follows verses that directly speak about the impermanence of physical possessions, its connection to the preciousness of prayer seems quite clear. Faithful prayers do not waste words. They also mine the riches of what is known by God in the heart.
The advice from Jesus is also not incidental. At the time, Jewish customs expected adult males to pray morning and evening, three times in the direction of Jerusalem, before and after meals, and in postures such as bowing and standing (Dennis C. Duling, Harper Collins Study ...
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2019-20 Worship resources
The narrative lectionary is a four-year cycle of readings. Read more.
NL Podcast 347: Treasure in Heaven
February 03, 2019
Podcast on Matthew 6:7-21, the Narrative Lectionary readings for Feb. 3, 2019 (Treasure in Heaven) featuring Profs. Rolf Jacobson, Craig Koester, and Kathryn Schifferdecker. Recorded at Luther Seminary, Saint Paul, Minn., for Working Preacher.