Monday, December 12, 2011

"But I say to you..." Jesus' Sermon on the Mount

Five Antithesis in the Sermon on the Mount

Matthew 5--7

“you have heard”

“but I say”

Explanation / application

Direction of the Law:

“do not commit murder”

“whoever commits murder is liable in court”

“do not be angry”

saying “raca” is enough to be liable in the supreme court; banished to hell.

Be reconciled to another before you present your worship to God. Better to make friends than go to court.

The law spoke to not merely the external but the psycho-sins lying behind the act, such as anger and insults.

“do not commit adultery”

“Whoever divorces his wife, let him give her a certificate of dismissal.”

“do not look…commit adultery in your heart”

“Everyone who divorces his wife makes her commit adultery…”

Be rid of those parts of your body which offend God rather than all of you perish.

Except for the cause of unchastity

The law condemned not only actual acts, but the psycho-sin of lust.

The law allowing divorce supported marriages, not to permit their dissolution.

“do not make false vows, but fulfill your vows to the Lord”

“make no oath at all”

It should be enough that you stand behind your word

The law of oaths was to make your word good, without the need for an outside witness.

“An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth”

“do not resist, but turn the other cheek..

“give your shirt and coat… walk two miles… give to him who asks.”

The law instructed Israel’s judiciary for the punishment to fit the crime. The law limited prohibited unmeasured vengeance.

“love your neighbor, and hate your enemy”

“love your enemies”

God’s common grace is a pattern for ethical living.

The Law never allowed for preferential treatment of others.

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