What does Matthew 6:31-33 really mean?

Matthew 6:31-33 is about the idea that one should not worry about material needs, but instead focus on seeking God’s kingdom and righteousness, trusting that all necessary things will be provided.

31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’
32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all.
33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.


Setting the Scene for Matthew 6:31-33

The scene in Matthew 6:31-33 takes place on a serene hillside overlooking the Sea of Galilee. Jesus, surrounded by a group of his disciples, has just finished delivering the Sermon on the Mount. The disciples, including Peter, James, John, and Andrew, are seated attentively around Jesus, absorbing his teachings on worry and the importance of seeking the Kingdom of God above all else.

As the gentle breeze rustles the grass and the sun begins to set over the horizon, Jesus gestures towards the lilies of the field, reminding his followers of God’s provision for even the smallest of creatures. His words are filled with wisdom and compassion, urging them not to be anxious about their daily needs but to trust in the Father’s care. The disciples listen intently, their hearts stirred by the profound truths being shared with them on that peaceful evening.

In this moment, the disciples are not just students of a great teacher; they are witnesses to the transformative power of faith and the profound love of their Savior. The scene is one of tranquility and spiritual enlightenment, as Jesus implores his followers to seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, promising that all their needs will be provided for in due time.

What is Matthew 6:31-33 about?

This verse emphasizes the importance of prioritizing spiritual growth and connection with God over worldly concerns and material needs. It is a reminder that by focusing on building a closer relationship with God and living in accordance with His teachings, we can find true fulfillment and peace. Instead of allowing worries about material possessions or financial security to consume us, this verse encourages us to trust in God’s provision and guidance.

Have you ever found yourself consumed by worries about material needs and possessions? This verse serves as a powerful reminder to shift our focus towards seeking God’s kingdom first. We can experience a deeper sense of purpose and contentment by placing our trust in Him and making our spiritual well-being a priority. Reflect on how you can redirect your energy and mindset towards nurturing your relationship with God, and trust that He will provide for your needs according to His plan.

Understanding what Matthew 6:31-33 really means

In the midst of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, we encounter a poignant reminder in Matthew 6:31-33, addressing the common human concerns that often plague our minds – daily needs and anxieties. Jesus urges us, “Do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’” This directive is a call to trust in God’s provision rather than being consumed by anxiety over material needs. It’s a stark contrast to the behavior of those without faith, as highlighted by the phrase, “For the pagans run after all these things,” emphasizing the preoccupation of the faithless with material concerns. The reassurance follows swiftly, “Your heavenly Father knows that you need them,” affirming God’s awareness and attentiveness to our needs.

Furthermore, Jesus instructs us to “seek first his kingdom and his righteousness,” underlining the importance of prioritizing spiritual pursuits and aligning our lives with God’s will. The promise that “all these things will be given to you as well” serves as a beacon of hope, assuring provision when our focus is on God’s kingdom. This message resonates with other biblical passages like Philippians 4:6-7, which reinforces the call to trust in God and not be anxious, and Proverbs 3:5-6, emphasizing trust in God and submission to His will. The illustration in Luke 12:24, comparing the care God provides for His creation to our own value in His eyes, further solidifies the message of God’s provision and care for His children.

In today’s world, where anxiety about financial stability, health, and future security abounds, this passage remains profoundly relevant. It encourages a shift in focus from material concerns to spiritual growth and trust in God, promoting a lifestyle of faith and reliance on His provision. An anecdote of a young professional struggling with constant worry about job security and financial stability serves as a powerful example. Upon prioritizing their spiritual life, dedicating time to prayer and community service, they found peace and unexpected provision, reinforcing their trust in God’s care.

In conclusion, Matthew 6:31-33 calls us to a life of faith and trust in God’s provision, urging us to prioritize our spiritual lives and trust that God will take care of our material needs. It serves as a poignant reminder that our value lies not in possessions but in our relationship with God, guiding us towards a life of peace and trust in His unfailing care.

What are we seeking first: God or material possessions?

Jesus is teaching his followers in the verse not to worry about the material needs of life such as what they will eat, drink, or wear. Instead, he instructs them to seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added unto them. This means that our primary focus and priority should be on seeking a relationship with God and living according to his ways. We demonstrate our trust in God to provide for all our needs by prioritizing Him over material possessions.

When we seek God first, we are acknowledging that he is the ultimate provider and sustainer of our lives. Placing our trust in him liberates us from the worries and anxieties that often accompany the pursuit of material possessions. Seeking God first means recognizing that our true fulfillment and contentment come from our relationship with him, rather than from the accumulation of wealth or possessions. The verse serves as a reminder to reorient our priorities and focus on what truly matters in a world that often values material wealth and possessions above all else. We align ourselves with God’s kingdom’s values of love, compassion, and righteousness by seeking God first, and we can experience a deeper sense of peace and fulfillment that transcends material wealth.


Imagine juggling work and family demands—constant hustle. But what if the secret to balance lies in putting God’s kingdom first? Like a GPS guiding you through life’s chaos, focusing on God provides clarity and abundance. Are you ready to let go of worry about material things and trust Him to lead the way? Why not make today the day you start prioritizing God’s kingdom in every part of your life?