Archive for the ‘vows’ Tag

Sermon Review XXIV: Sermon on the Mount CD 16 Exceeding Righteousness Part B

Matt 5:20
What Lord Jesus wants is inward attitude.
Righteousness of the Pharisees is just external obedience.
While the Pharisees want more and more obedience, Lord Jesus requires deeper and deeper obedience.
God is the God of morality and He wants to see us changed inside out.

4.)    The 3th commandment (Matt 5:33)

Oath and vows are encouraged in the Bible. Oaths have to do with future action; vows have to do with material gifts. God is against someone who takes oaths and vows and don’t do them.
In Jesus’ days, oath and vows can be non-binding as long as they do not invoke God’s name. The rabbi came up with much excuse to break oath and vow. There was much lie and dishonesty.
Lord Jesus said: Don’t be flippant when it comes to holy things of God. For Him, any word is a bond regardless of any vows formula. Righteous person does not need to swear because every word he/she says is the truth.

Matt 26:63-64
Lord Jesus did not mind being put under oath. Christians are allowed to make oath whenever necessary.
– Oath taking is permitted.
– On rare occasion we may need to say “God is my witness.”
However, don’t use swearing a normal part of conversation. An honest man/woman hardly needs to resolve to swearing.

5.)    Loving someone who is down-right evil. (Matt 5:38-42)

It is not part of the 10 laws. It is part of the civil law in the days of Lord Jesus.
It is initially the instruction for judges, in the legal books.It is called principle of retribution.
Eye for eye, tooth for tooth. We are not to take matter into our hands. No one should take personal revenge.
The scribes neglected the background of verse ‘eye for eye, tooth for tooth’. They applied it to their daily personal relationship.
Lord Jesus taught us not to resist evil person = don’t immediately sue the evil person.
Our response is never based on retaliation.
Slapping on the cheek = insult. We may have the legal right to sue, but let’s not use it.
Tunic and cloak = very precious. When we are bullied, don’t retaliate.
One-two mile= Roman soldier was only allowed to command a Jew to carry out his stuff for one mile. It was public humiliation for the Jew, reminding the Jew they were still under Roman empire.
God will ensure justice is done. We just need to commit the injustice into God’s hand.
Lord Jesus is not promoting pacifism. Military service is still needed.
Vengeance is not my prerogative. It is God’s prerogative.
Don’t always demand justice because God does not always demand justice from our life. If He does, none of us stands alive.

6.)    ‘Love neighbor-hate neighbor’ teaching (Matt 5:43-45)

The Bible never taught to hate the enemy. The scribes added it because they thought only fellow Jews were neighbors. They considered non-Jews to be enemies. They were racist.
The scribes limited the ‘love’.
Lord Jesus taught them to love enemies, to speak well of, to be kind to, to do good to, and to pray for enemies. We can’t keep praying if we keep on disliking them.
Like Father like Son. God the Father sent rain to both Christians and non-Christians. Lord Jesus was sent to everyone. We, too, should love everyone.
What is so special about us if we only love our neighbors? What is so special if we avoid divorce, adultery or if we honor parents or if we are polite? Non-Christians do the same.
Our calling is to outdo the non-Christians in term of virtue.
The mark of perfection for Christians is love regardless of the attitude of the receiver. Our love has to be patterned after God’s love.

You can get a copy of the sermon at The Ink Room here:

Posted November 25, 2012 by Jefri Yue Fei 吴岳飞 in Sermon

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