Matt. 6:25-34 (Part 3)

CLEMENT OF ALEXANDRIA: “For,” it is said, “seek what is great, and the little things shall be added.”  The Stromata, 2.336.

6:34 CLEMENT OF ALEXANDRIA: To those, therefore, that have made progress in the word, He has proclaimed this utterance, bidding them dismiss anxious care of the things of this world, and exhorting them to adhere to the Father alone, in imitation of children. Therefore also in what follows He says: “Take no anxious thought for tomorrow; sufficient to the day is the evil thereof.” Thus He enjoins them to lay aside the cares of this life, and depend on the Father alone. The Instructor, 2.213.

CLEMENT OF ALEXANDRIA: For He says, “Take no anxious thought for tomorrow,” meaning that the man who has devoted himself to Christ ought to be sufficient to himself, and servant to himself, and moreover lead a life which provides for each day by itself. For it is not in war, but in peace, that we are trained. War needs great preparation, and luxury craves profusion; but peace and love, simple and quiet sisters, require no arms nor excessive preparation. The Word is their sustenance. The Instructor, 2.234.

TERTULLIAN: The Greeks also sometimes use the word “evils” for troubles and injuries. Against Marcion, 3.316.

CYPRIAN: But it may also be thus understood, that we who have renounced the world, and have cast away its riches and pomps in the faith of spiritual grace, should only ask for ourselves food and support, since the Lord instructs us, and says, “Whosoever does not forsake all that he has, cannot be my disciple.”  But he who has begun to be Christ’s disciple, renouncing all things according to the word of his Master, ought to ask for his daily food, and not to extend the desires of his petition to a long period, as the Lord again prescribes, and says, “Do not worry for tomorrow, for tomorrow itself shall take thought for itself. Sufficient for the day is the evil thereof.” With reason, then, does Christ’s disciple ask food for himself for the day, since he is prohibited from thinking of tomorrow; because it becomes a contradiction and a repugnant thing for us to seek to live long in this world, since we ask that the kingdom of God should come quickly. Thus also the blessed apostle admonishes us, giving substance and strength to the steadfastness of our hope and faith: “We brought nothing,” he says, “into this world, nor indeed can we carry anything out. Having therefore food and raiment, let us be content. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many and hurtful lusts, which drown men in perdition and destruction. For the love of money is the root of all evil; which while some coveted after, they have made shipwreck from the faith, and have pierced themselves through with many sorrows.”  The Treatises of Cyprian, 5.452-453.

© OTR 2023