The Sermon on the
Mount: Matthew 6:19-34
Based on Making Sense of the Sermon on the Mount
John Y. H. Yieh
Hypothesis: Our piety bridges the requirements of God’s law and human practice.
I. Possessions and Trust (Matt. 6:19-34)
1. Yieh asks “How do we [Christians] respond to these two sayings?” [“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth” (6:19) and “You cannot serve God and wealth.” (6:24)] Likewise, he asks, “Can a reasonable person put them into practice?” How do you respond to these questions?
2. How do you think Jesus was asking his followers to balance the need for resources for home and welfare with the need to be charitable?
3. Do you think Jesus was asking his followers to choose poverty, even at the risk of becoming a burden on society? Why or why not.
4. Yieh questions, “Do you think wealth is a form of blessing? Can wealth not be used to show God’s glory and serve the needy?” How would you answer these questions?
5. Some have pointed out that Jesus failed to teach his followers about the proper use of wealth. Rather, he directed the followers to pay attention to service of God alone. Do you consider these to be a concern for us? Why might Jesus have chosen to focus on service of God as opposed to using wealth?
6. How does Matthew’s refrain, “Therefore, do not worry.” provide a backdrop for Jesus’ teaching in this section?
7. What impact do you think contemporary (Wesley and more modern theologians) attempt to lessen the radicalness of Jesus’ command has on Jesus’ intent and teaching about money and possessions? What benefit could be realized by a believer’s attempt to explicitly follow Jesus’ commands?
8. What do you think a reasoned response is to Jesus’ teaching about wealth and possessions would be for 21st century Christians?