Our Text is taken from the Gospel of Jesus Christ as recorded by St. Matthew. The Gospel of Matthew is divided into seven sections, comprising of the Introduction with five Teaching sections and the Conclusion. Matthew laid emphasis on the Teaching ministry of Jesus and the demonstration of His authority. Our Text is taken from the First Teaching Section commonly called the “Sermon on the Mount,” which is a series of the Teachings of Jesus on the life and lifestyle of those in God’s Kingdom, as seen in Matthew 5-7. In Matthew 6, Jesus teaches on what believers should do in Giving to the Needy [v1-4]; how to pray and fast [v5-18]; the right use of material and laying up treasure in Heaven [19-24]; Worldly Cares/Priority versus God’s Priority [25-34].
“SEEK FIRST”: To seek for something means to look for or search for something or someone eagerly and earnestly with a consuming concentration. When Jesus said seek first, it means the things that are of utmost importance that is worth spending every energy, resources and drive to acquire and retain.
The First is the Priority. When we talk of Priority it is something that you think to be more important than other things and should be dealt with first. It is to give something the most important place among various things that have to be done. Priority entails that there are competing demands, ordering things according to the scale of preference and choices to be made according to needs and importance. We live in a world of competing demands. Daily, we face what one could call Existential confrontation of realities in life, and the choices we make impact our lifestyles and eternal destiny. Why are you doing what you are doing? This question searches out our motives and inordinate ambitions.
This is also obvious in Matthew 6:24: “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon”. Therefore, to determine Priority is to determine preference of Service; it is to determine Loyalty and to determine one’s passion as to who to love or hate. It is evident that the one whom we serve, is the one whom we are passionate about and the same is the one we are loyal to, that one is our Master.
(Culled from the Presidential Address of the Primate, the Most Rev. Henry Chukwudum Ndukuba to the 13th General Synod of the Church of Nigeria by the Ven. Dr Princewill Ireoba)
TO BE CONTINUED