Matthew 6:25 is the twenty-fifth verse of the sixth chapter of the Gospel of Matthew in the New Testament and is part of the Sermon on the Mount. This verse shifts the discussion from one of money to one of worry.
- Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for
- your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink;
- nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not
- the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?
The World English Bible translates the passage as:
- Therefore, I tell you, don’t be anxious for your life:
- what you will eat, or what you will drink; nor yet
- for your body, what you will wear. Isn’t life more
- than food, and the body more than clothing?
For a collection of other versions see BibRef Matthew 6:25
Jesus has just told his followers that it is impossible to pursue both God and wealth. In this verse he begins a discussion of why one should not be over anxious about all material things. In this verse Jesus states that there is more to life than food and clothing, and implicitly warns that a focus on these practical concerns could distract from the focus on God. The word translated as life could also refer to the soul, but writers of the period did not see a distinction between the two concepts. This verse is also interpreted as a reminder that God provided one's life and one's body so one should not doubt that he will also provide the necessities of survival.
Fowler notes that the early manuscripts are divided on whether the verse includes the question "what will you drink." The absence of this question would make a clearer parallel with later verses, as while the questions about food and clothing are answered, this one is not.
The word translated as life literally means soul, but when Jesus states that one should not be anxious about one's soul it is quite clear that this is meant in the Jewish sense of vitality or vigour, rather than the Christian theological idea of the soul. Thus the soul, which in this verse is portrayed as both eating or drinking, is more accurately translated as life. The word translated in this verse as eat is the same word frequently translated as rust in Matthew 6:19.
- Nolland, John. The Gospel of Matthew: a commentary on the Greek text. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing, 2005 pg. 198
- Fowler, Harold. The Gospel of Matthew: Volume One. Joplin: College Press, 1968
- Hendriksen, William. The Gospel of Matthew. Edinburgh: Banner of Truth Trust, 1976
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