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.” NKJV
Almost every time I have heard a sermon from this text, it was about money. It is talking about money, wealth, or possessions, but it is about much more. It is addressing “divided hearts” or “divided allegiance.” In my view, that is one of the central messages of the Gospel, in my opinion. The verbiage of this passage is quite interesting to me. Let’s examine it if we might.
Notice Jesus said that we could not serve Two Masters. Think about that, He called possessions, wealth, money, or whatever divides our hearts and allegiance a Master. That would imply that we are slaves to whatever that is. Some are enslaved by their sexual addiction, some by drugs or alcohol, some by the quest for power, some by fame, some by public opinion, and many other things.
If we allow anything to become a Master or Lord in our lives and divide our hearts and allegiance, we become the person of James 1:8, “double-minded” and thereby Unstable in ALL our ways. He did not say some of our ways, but ALL of our ways and an unstable man cannot be depended upon.
Proverbs 25:19 says, “Confidence in an unfaithful man in time of trouble is like a bad tooth and a foot out of joint.” Paul told the Corinthian church in 1 Corinthians 15:58, “…be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.”
Why do I use Proverbs 25 to address the person with a divided heart and divided allegiance? Read the following words of our Lord about the person attempting to serve Two Masters, “he will be loyal to the one and despise the other.” That which keeps us from what we want or reminds us of our primary duty when we want to split our love and loyalty is almost always despised. God will not share His Glory with anyone or anything.
1 Samuel 12:21 declares, “You must not turn aside, for then you would go after futile things which cannot profit or deliver, because they are futile.” That speaks of a divided heart and results in a lack of productivity. The writer of Hebrews declared in Hebrews 10:23, “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.” John warned in 1 John 2:15, “Do not love the world nor the things of the world if anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in them.” A divided heart results in robbing one of the Joy of the Lord.
God is not pleased with a Divided Heart, as we can see in Hosea 10:1-2 – “Israel is an empty vine, he bringeth forth fruit unto himself: according to the multitude of his fruit he hath increased the altars; according to the goodness of his land they have made goodly images. 2 Their heart is divided; now shall they be found faulty: he shall break down their altars, he shall spoil their images.” Some seem to think they can live with a divided heart and God, or others will not notice, but God sees and knows.
I suggest you read these passages:
1 Samuel 16:7 – “But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart…
Psalm 7:9 – “Oh let the wickedness of the wicked come to an end; but establish the just: for the righteous God puts hearts and minds to the test.”
Psalm 44:21 – “Would God not find this out? For He knows the secrets of the heart.
Proverbs 15:3 – “The eyes of the LORD are in every place, watching the evil and the good.”
Proverbs 21:2 – “Every person’s way is right in his own eyes: but the LORD examines the hearts…”
Proverbs 24:11-12 – “Rescue those who are being taken away to death, And those who are staggering to the slaughter, Oh hold them back! 12 If you say, “See, we did not know this,” Does He who weighs the hearts not consider it? And does He who watches over your soul not know it?
And will He not [a]repay a person according to his work?”
Jeremiah 17:10 – “I the LORD search the heart, I try test the mind, to give every person according to his ways, and according to the result of his deeds.”
1 John 3:20 – “For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knows all things.”
Revelation 2:23 – “And I will kill her children with plague, and all the churches will know that I am He which searches the minds and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your deeds.”
God is a jealous God in the sense that He has given us Unconditional Love through Jesus on the Cross and seeks to give us the New Birth and translate us from the kingdom of darkness to His kingdom of Light. He wants to include us in His Body, which requires exclusivity of commitment. Come out from among them and be separate is the plea.
If we ‘seek first’ God and His kingdom, we have the benefits and promises of God. If we divide our heart, love, and loyalty, we separate ourselves from God and find nothing but futility.
God bless you as you enjoy this day in Him!