Are Good Deeds Supposed to Be Public or Not?

Supposed contradiction and verses:

Are good deeds supposed to be public or not?

Matthew 5:16

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

Matthew 6:3-4

3 But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth:

4 That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly.


   This again is a god example of the atheist/skeptic taking verses out of context. I am going to address these two verses in reverse order.

   First, Matthew 6:3-4 is really cut and to the point. Jesus made a point about the Pharisees that we see quite often with Christians today. ďHey! Look at me, look what Iím doing? Arenít I a good Christian?Ē Time and again I have seen people bring attention to them or have to bring something up that they did so that they can get people to tell them what a great job they are doing. We are NOT supposed to seek after the praise of men, but to do our works for the Lord. Jesus went on to say that if you do this, you have already received your reward. Since we are told not to store up riches on earth, these people are working on being spiritually bankrupt in Heaven! Not that we need riches there, thatís a whole other topic. But the Pharisees in like manner drew attention to themselves on how much they gave, as well as the acts of kindness they did. This is NOT the way it is supposed to be.

   In Matthew 5:16 we are told to let our light shine for the whole world, but this is not the same thing. Jesus is the Light within us, and everything we say, what we do, our entire lives are a testimony for Him. We can go out and live for Him, and let our lives be that testimony without purposely drawing attention to ourselves. Thatís the point, let Him have the glory, not us. When people want to know whatís different, or why we do what we do, itís not about us, but rather the change He has made within us. A true Christian cannot help but distribute those types of things, because their will be evidence of the fruit of the spirit. What are those thing and how do you know when you must question if the Holy Spirit is within you? Glad you asked.

Galatians 5:19-24

19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,

20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,

21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,

23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

24 And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.

   So now we see, Jesus showed what serving God was supposed to look like in one verse, and not supposed to look like in another. There is no contradiction!


In His Grace,

            Mike Harris


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