Sermon on 1 Peter 5:7 | What to Do with Life’s Cares


What to Do with Life’s Cares (1 Peter 5:7)

There are so many troubles in this life. Cancer strikes a loved one, and we watch him die a slow and painful death. Our marriage isn’t any good—we just can’t stand the person to whom we’re married. We discover that the company to which we’ve given our lives is moving to Mexico and we no longer have an income.

There are so many ways to deal with these worries. We can turn to alcohol or drugs in an effort to forget that we have problems. We can keep our problems bottled up inside of us until we have a nervous breakdown and be hospitalized. We can become so short-tempered that our family can’t stand to see us coming.

But there is another alternative-we can give those cares to Jesus. A preaching instructor once said, “Preach often to those with troubled hearts ” Tonight, we’re going to do just that-we’re going to open up the Scriptures to see what we can do with life’s cares.

We’re going to examine one verse of Scripture: “Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you” (1 Pet. 5:7). This text is too often neglected and forgotten. But, tonight, we want to examine it to see what it teaches.

You Are in This Verse

The text says, “Casting all your care upon him.”

We live in a very impersonal world. We don’t know our neighbors—When Tammy and I lived in a townhouse in Pikeville, I didn’t even know my neighbors’ names! We can get on the Internet and purchase just about everything we need without ever having contact with anyone; instead of picking up the phone, we can just send a quick email. When we’re in school, we have a student ID number, and most professors don’t know our names.

But God know you by name. He doesn’t keep track of us on some gigantic, cosmic computer. God knows his own by name (Jn. 10:3). God knows you. Matthew 10:30. 1 Corinthians 10:13—God knows how much temptation you can bear. It stands to reason since God created you that God would know you.

God knows your worry. What are you anxious about? Some medical test/surgery, the loss of a loved one, whether or not your marriage is going to survive, whether you’re going to have money to buy food after you pay for your prescriptions? God knows what that worry; it’s no secret to him.

Jesus often took time to care for the individual. When Jesus passed through Jericho, he made time to care for Zacchaeus (Lk 19:1-10). Even though his disciples rebuked him, he took time to put his hands on and pray for small children (Mk 10:13-16).

God has time for you.

Your Cares are in This Verse

“Casting all your care upon him.”

“Anxiety” is really the right translation: the Greek means excessive care or worry over circumstances which one does not know how to handle. Anxiety brings great problems. Because the spies were anxious, they said the Israelites couldn’t take the Promised Land. Because Peter became anxious, he began to sink (Matt 14:30).

There are many kinds of cares in this verse.

The believers of Peter’s day were suffering terrible persecution. They had been forced to flee for their lives, leaving everything behind: home, jobs, and possessions. They, no doubt, struggled with anxiety; thus, this is an appropriate admonition for these Christians.

There are many kinds of anxiety we carry around as well. We may have anxiety about our family, parents, children, wife, or husband. We may have anxiety about our finances, future, job security. We may have anxiety about our health, the health of others, or mental health. We may be anxious about world conditions, war, or nuclear destruction. Every care that you are carrying is in this verse—there is no care or burden that you cannot take to God.

Cares prevent us from receiving God’s blessings. The reason this is so is that God has instructed us Christians not to worry. Matthew 6:25. Philippians 4:6. If we disobey God and keep our worries in front of us, there is no way that God can or will bless us.

We are to take our cares and cast them upon the Lord. The verb “cast” means “to throw upon” and indicates a decisive act on our part; it’s not something which just happens by accident—it is something we must decide to do. We’re always to leave our worry in God’s hands. Matthew 6:31-32. Philippians 4:6.

Are you leaving your worry in God’s hands?

Jesus is in This Verse

“Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.”

Jesus has always cared for people. Jesus was “a Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief” (Is. 53:3)—This doesn’t just refer to his crucifixion—it means that he cares about our grief and our sorrows. When two blind men asked Jesus to heal them, he “had compassion and touched their eyes” (Matt 20:34). When a leper asked Jesus to heal him, Jesus was “moved with compassion, [and] stretched out His hand and touched him (Mk. l:41)—it was dangerous to touch a leper, but Jesus did so anyway. If Jesus cared for all these individuals while he was in the flesh, surely he cares for those of us in the flesh.

Though Greek philosophy at its highest could formulate a doctrine of God’s perfect goodness, it could not ever imagine his active concern for mankind. The Deists did not believe that God had an active concern for mankind—According to them God just wound the world up, and then he left it alone. Many of us act like that—We worry and worry and worry without ever asking God to help us deal with these anxieties.

“Does Jesus care when my heart is pained Too deeply for mirth and song, As the burdens press, and the cares distress And the way grows weary and long? O yes, he cares, I know He cares, his heart is touched with my grief: When the days are weary, the long nights dreary, I know my Savior cares.”

Jesus stands ready to take our burdens if we give them to him. Are you willing to give your cares to Jesus?

This sermon was originally preached by Dr. Justin Imel, Sr., at the Alum Creek church of Christ in Alum Creek, West Virginia.

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