Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Matthew: Chapter 5

The richness of Matthew is beyond absorption. As I contemplate that this Gospel was written to the Jewish people, I am overwhelmed by the awe-inspiring manner in which Christ fulfills the Law. This portion of teaching from Christ is described by Oswald Chambers in this way: “The essence of the Sermon on the Mount is: never look for justice but never cease to give it.” Jesus is describing the economy of the Kingdom of Heaven. He was explaining the Kingdom in which He rules to those who have already accepted Him as their ruler.

The word ‘blessed’ speaks of God-given satisfaction; Christ’s Kingdom is above and beyond all that this world offers. Entrance is granted only to humbled hearts--there is no place in Kingdom of Heaven for ‘self.’ After the Beatitudes…after Christ outlines the attitudes His subjects are to have….He reminds us of our purpose. We are created to flavor this world, to be a preservative and share the Light we have received! When we allow this sermon to penetrate, we will see our desperate need for a Savior: only Jesus can fulfill the righteousness outlined by the Law.

The next passage in this chapter reveals the heart of the Law. While the nation of Israel focused on external obedience, Jesus elevated that teaching to internal application. The truth that heart attitudes are the root of behavior is clearly revealed. The teachings on oaths speak to the same issue: integrity. What we say, we must do.

Finally, my heart has been singing ’Freely, freely, you have received. Freely, freely, give.’ as I think on the closing verse of this scripture. Reconciliation not retaliation is the ministry we have received. God dealt--and deals--with us in mercy; we are to do the same. The Voice of the Martyrs ministry continually teaches me about the realities of these scriptures. I am so thankful God has given me only small application lessons in these truths of loving enemies. In our Bible Study last evening, we looked at how God chose to reach out to us as His enemies and transform us into beloved children. My question of myself--and for each of us--is this: Whom is God asking me to love from ‘enemy’ status to treasured family? Only Christ in me can do that!


No comments:

Post a Comment