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Ferrar Fenton Bible: Matthew 6

The Philosophy of Charity

"Take care and do not display your charities before men, with the intention of being observed by them; for if you do, you will not have a reward from your Father Who is in heaven. When, therefore, you do a kindness, do not blow a trumpet before yourself, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues, and in the streets, so that they may secure the praise of men. I tell you, however, that they obtain their reward. But whenever you do a kindness, do not let your left hand know what your right hand does; so that your kindness may be secret, and your Father Who looks into the secret will return it to you openly.

How to Pray

"And when you pray, do not follow the example of the hypocrites; for they delight to pray standing in the crowds and at the corners of the squares, so that they may be seen by men. I tell you, however, that they receive their wages. But when you pray, enter your chamber, and having shut your door, pray to your Father in that privacy; and your Father, seeing into that privacy, will return it to you openly.

"But when praying, make use of no babble, like the heathen; for they imagine that they will be listened to because of their volubility. Do not therefore imitate them; for your Father knows your necessities before you can ask Him. Consequently, you must pray in this way:

The Lord's Prayer

"Our Father in the Heavens; Your Name must be being1 Hallowed;

"Your Kingdom must be being restored

"Your Will must be being done both in Heaven and upon the Earth.

"Give us to-day our to-morrow's bread;

"And forgive us our faults, as we forgive those offending us, for You would not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from its evil.2

"For if you forgive men their faults, your heavenly Father will forgive you yours. But if you do not forgive those who wrong you, then neither will your Father forgive you your misdeeds.

"Moreover, when you fast, become not like the hypocrites; for they distort their faces, so that it may be seen by men that they are fasting. I tell you, however, that they receive their wages. But when you are fasting, dress your head, and wash your face: so that men may not know you are fasting, but only your Father, Who is in the secret; and your Father Who observes in secret, will reward you.

Worldliness, and what it Costs

"Do not hoard up for yourselves treasure upon the earth, where moth and canker destroy, and where thieves may burrow through and steal; but store up your treasure in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroy, and where thieves cannot dig through nor steal: for where your treasure is, there your heart will also be.

"The eye is the lamp of the body; if therefore your eye is sound, your whole body will be illuminated. But if your eye is diseased, your whole body will be in darkness. Consequently, if your sight is defective, all your body will be darkness.

"No man can serve two masters: for either he will dislike the one, and be fond of the other; or else he will honour the one, and despise the other. So you are not able to serve both God and Mammon. Because of this I tell you, do not embitter your lives how you shall eat; how you shall drink; nor respecting your body, how you shall be clothed. Is not the life more important than the food, and the body itself than its clothing?

"Just look at the birds in the sky! They neither sow nor reap, nor collect into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them! Are you not much more important than they? Yet who among you, by fretting, is able to add a single foot to his height? And Why should you fret about clothing? Reflect upon the lilies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin: and yet, I tell you, that even Solomon in all his glory, arrayed not himself like one of them. If therefore God so clothes the flowers of the field, which flourish to-day, and to-morrow are thrown into the fire, how much more you! You of little faith! Never therefore fret, saying,'What shall we eat?' 'What shall we drink?' nor 'How shall we find clothing?' for the heathen hunt eagerly for all these! Your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But first secure the Kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things will be ready for you. Do not, therefore fret about to-morrow, for the morrow has its own trouble. The care of each day by itself is quite enough.


  1. TruthUnity Note: This translation by Ferrar Fenton was referenced by Charles and Cora Fillmore in the Forward of Teach Us To Pray. The unique translation he provided illustrates why the Ferrar Fenton Bible remains relevant for today's readers.
  2. Note.—The above is the literal translation of the original Greek, retaining the Greek moods and tenses by the clearest English I could. The old versions, having been made from a Latin translation, could not reproduce the actual sense of the Saviour as given by the Evangelists, for Latin has no Aorist of the Imperative Passive Mood used by Matthew and Luke.
    The force of the Imperative 1st Aorist seems to me to be that of what is called a "Standing Order,"a thing to be done absolutely, and continuously.—F. F.

Transcribed by Mark Hicks on 12-29-2014