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Matthew 6:27

Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature?
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Augustine of Hippo

AD 430
De Op. Monach., 23: Some argue that they ought not to labour, because the fowls of the air neither sow nor reap. Why then do they not attend to that which follows, “neither gather into barns? Why do they seek to have their hands idle, and their storehouses full? Why indeed do they grind corn, and dress it? For this do not the birds. Or even if they find men whom they can persuade to supply them day by day with victuals ready prepared, at least they draw water from the spring, and set on table for themselves, which the birds donot. But if neither are they driven to fill themselves vessels with water, then have they gone one new step of righteousness beyond those who were at that time at Jerusalem, ought the Apostle therefore not to have fled, but to have remained still to have been seized, that God might save him as He did the Three Children out of the midst of the fire. Serm. in Mont., ii, 15: Ye are of more value, because a rational animal, such as man is, is higher in the scale of na...

George Leo Haydock

AD 1849
Why should the children of God fear want, when we behold the very birds of the air do not go unprovided? Moreover, what possible good can this anxiety, this diffidence procure them? Almighty God gives life and growth, which you cannot do with all your solicitude, however intensely you think. Apollo may plant, Paul may water, but God alone can give the increase. (1 Corinthians iii. 6.) Of how much greater consequence is it then to love and serve Him, and to live for Him alone! (Haydock) ...
< 1 min2/12

Glossa Ordinaria

AD 1480
Non occ.: He teaches us not only by the instance of the birds, but adds afurther proof, that to our being and life our own care is not enough, but Divine Providence therein works; saying, “Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit to his stature?”
< 1 min3/12

Hilary of Poitiers

AD 368
Otherwise; As by the example of the spirits He had fixed our faith in the supply of food for our lives, so now by a decision of common understanding He cuts off all anxiety about supply of clothing. Seeing that He it is who shall raise in one perfect man every various kind of body that ever drew breath, and is alone able to add one or two or three cubits to each man’s stature; surely in being anxious concerning clothing, that is, concerning the appearance of our bodies, we offer affront to Him who will add so much to each man’s stature as shall bring all to an equality. ...

Jerome

AD 420
There be some who, seeking to go beyond the limits of their fathers, and to soar into the air, sink into the deep and are drowned. These will have the birds of the air to mean the Angels, and the other powers in the ministry of God, who without any care of their own are fed by God’s providence. But if this be indeed as they would have it, how follows it, said to men, “Are not ye of more worth than they?” It must be taken then in the plain sense; If birds that today are, and tomorrow are not, be nourished by God’s providence, without thought or toil of their own, how much more men to whom eternity is promised! ...

John Chrysostom

AD 407
For God created all animals for man, but man for himself; therefore by how much the more precious is the creation of man, so much the greater is God’s care for him. If then the birds without toiling find food, shall man not find, to whom God has given both knowledge of labour and hope of fruitfulness?. For it is God who day by day works the growth of your body, yourself not feeling it. If then the Providence of God works thus daily in your very body, how shall that same Providence withhold from working in necessaries of life? And if by taking thought you cannot add the smallest part to your body, how shall you by taking thought be altogether saved? ...

John Chrysostom

AD 407
But if you can not bear, upon hearing so high words, to release yourself from these grievous bonds, consider the unprofitableness of the thing, and so put an end to your care. For Which of you by taking thought (says He) can add one cubit unto his stature. Matthew 6:27 Do you see how by that which is evident, He has manifested that also which is obscure? Thus, As unto your body, says He, you will not by taking thought be able to add, though it be ever so little; so neither to gather food; think as you may otherwise. Hence it is clear that not our diligence, but the providence of God, even where we seem to be active, effects all. So that, were He to forsake us, no care, nor anxiety, nor toil, nor any other such thing, will ever appear to come to anything, but all will utterly pass away. Let us not therefore suppose His injunctions are impossible: for there are many who duly perform them, even as it is. And if you know not of them, it is nothing marvellous, since Elias too suppo...

John Chrysostom

AD 407
It is not until he has clearly revealed his affection that he proceeds also to reprove them, saying, “O you of little faith.” For this is the quality of a wise counselor. He balances counsel and reproof, that he may awaken persons all the more to the force of his words. The Gospel of Matthew, Homily ...
< 1 min8/12

John Chrysostom

AD 407
Note the acceleration of images: just when the lilies are decked out, he no longer calls them lilies but “grass of the field.” He then points further to their vulnerable condition by saying “which are here today.” Then he does not merely say “and not tomorrow” but rather more callously “cast into the oven.” These creatures are not merely “clothed” but “so clothed” in this way as to be later brought to nothing. Do you see how Jesus everywhere abounds in amplifications and intensifications? And he does so in order to press his points home. So then he adds, “Will he not much more clothe you?” The force of the emphasis is on “you” to indicate covertly how great is the value set upon your personal existence and the concern God shows for you in particular. It is as though he were saying, “You, to whom he gave a soul, for whom he fashioned a body, for whose sake he made everything in creation, for whose sake he sent prophets, and gave the law, and wrought those innumerable good works, and for...

John Chrysostom

AD 407
Do you see how Jesus clarifies what has been obscure by comparing it to what is selfevident? Can you add one cubit, or even the slightest measure, to your bodily life span by worrying about it? Can you by being anxious about food add moments to your life? Hence it is clear that it is not our diligence but the providence of God, even where we seem to be active, that finally accompanies everything. In the light of God’s providence, none of our cares, anxieties, toils or any other such things will ever come to anything, but all will utterly pass away. The Gospel of Matthew, Homily ...

Theophylact of Ochrid

AD 1107
This means, even if you take the utmost care, you can do nothing if God does not will it. Why then do you drive yourself to exhaustion with futile worries?
< 1 min11/12

Theophylact of Ochrid

AD 1107
This means: Even if you take the utmost care, you can do nothing if God does not will it. Why then do you drive yourself to exhaustion with futile worries?
< 1 min12/12

Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. - 2 Peter 1:20

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