Matthew 6:18

18 Then you won't look like you are fasting to people, but only to your Father who is present in that secret place. Your Father who sees in secret will reward you.

Matthew 6:18 Meaning and Commentary

Matthew 6:18

That thou appear not unto men to fast
Which is just the reverse of the hypocrites, the Scribes and Pharisees; and quite contrary to the customs of the Jews, who when they fasted, particularly on their noted fasts F12,

``brought out the ark into the street of the city, and put burnt ashes upon it, and upon the head of the prince, and upon the head of the president of the sanhedrim, and every man upon his own head.''

All which was done, to be seen of men to fast; but Christ directs to such sorts of fasting, and which is to be done in such a manner, as only to be seen by God:

but unto thy Father which is in secret;
who is invisible, and who sees what is done in secret, and takes notice of the internal exercise of grace; which he approves of, and prefers to outward fastings; and

thy Father which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly:
and to have honour from God, is infinitely more than to have the applause of men; for as God delights in, so he will reward his own grace with glory.


FOOTNOTES:

F12 Misn. Taanith, c. 2. sect. 1.

Matthew 6:18 In-Context

16 “And when you fast, don't put on a sad face like the hypocrites. They distort their faces so people will know they are fasting. I assure you that they have their reward.
17 When you fast, brush your hair and wash your face.
18 Then you won't look like you are fasting to people, but only to your Father who is present in that secret place. Your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
19 “Stop collecting treasures for your own benefit on earth, where moth and rust eat them and where thieves break in and steal them.
20 Instead, collect treasures for yourselves in heaven, where moth and rust don't eat them and where thieves don't break in and steal them.