In His ministry, the Lord Jesus often used illustrations from the world around Him. Objects and scenes that His listeners would be familiar with were taken, and lessons were drawn from them. This, combined with His authority, certainly must have made His teaching memorable. Consider The Lilies Do you ever wish you had been alive when Jesus was here on earth? “If only He were here today,” you may be thinking, “and I could sit with a crowd and listen to His enthralling teaching!” While that is not possible, many of the objects and situations that He spoke about are still with us, and we can surely benefit as we take time to “consider” them. Although the “lilies of the field” that the Lord was looking at may be difficult to identify precisely today (Bible commentators have different ideas), we are all familiar with wildflowers. You may have seen a field of wild poppies, for instance, swaying gently in the breeze. Flowers can appear so graceful, yet at the same time they are very simple objects. Their life-cycle is marked by growth. First a shoot appears, then later a tight bud gradually opens into a beautiful full bloom.
One Of These
Flowers have a glory of their own. Amazingly, as He surveyed “the lilies of the field,” Jesus said that “even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these” (Mt. 6:29). Solomon was arguably Israel’s greatest king. He surpassed all other kings for riches and wisdom (1 Ki. 10:23). His reign epitomized glory. “And yet” (Mt. 6:29) Jesus said, with all his splendor Solomon was not dressed like one of these wild flowers!
They Toil Not
Clearly there are different kinds of glory. Solomon’s glory was very impressive. Those, like the Queen of Sheba who visited him, were overwhelmed by what they saw. How, then, could one lily in the field exceed Solomon in all his glory? The answer is found in the words “they toil not, neither do they spin” (Mt. 6:28). Solomon’s robes of majesty had been skillfully woven and embroidered, and all this required much time and effort. The lilies of the field were beautiful naturally – without any toiling or spinning. Their growth was effortless and their beauty came from within.
The secret is simply this. The glory of our lives does not depend upon our human striving and effort. God wants the Holy Spirit to take over, working quietly within to promote growth and produce His own distinctive fruit. This is the sure way to bring glory to our Creator and blessing to other people.
“Wherefore, if God so clothe 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?” Matthew 6:30
By Martin Girard
With permission to publish by: Sam Hadley, Grace & Truth, 210 Chestnut St., Danville, IL., USA. Website: www.gtpress.org