Skip to content

You have heard that the ancients were told, ‘YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT MURDER’ and ‘Whoever commits murder shall be liable to the court.’But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother shall be guilty before the court; and whoever shall say to his brother, ‘Raca,’ shall be guilty before the supreme court; and whoever shall say, ‘You fool,’ shall be guilty enough to go into the fiery hell. (Matt 5:21-22 NASB)

During this wonderful passage we call the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus takes the Law that has been taught to the Jewish people for centuries and begins to explain it a completely new way.

Don’t get me wrong, the scholars of Israel had long been commenting on the holy scriptures, and teachers had been passing on these writings from generation to generation.

As I understand it, and again I am no scholar, much of this writing was putting the laws into keepable methods. (or nearly keepable anyway) They would take every area of life and tell you exactly what you could and could not do.

There were laws about how to handle your money, and your crops, and your kids, your wife, your livestock, your mothers-in-law. (Nothing was intended by the order of that last sentence – honest) There were laws and rules and procedures for everything. A Jewish life was a well-oiled machine.

But Jesus, rather than explaining to the people how they could manage their lives in such a way as not to offend God, took these laws and showed them how in every day life they were offending God even in their keeping of the laws that they supposed He imposed on them.

Later in His ministry He would go into detail about how the best keepers of the law of their day, the Pharisees, offended God by their way of keeping and enforcing the law.

Jesus just finished saying we could not get rid of the laws, now He is going to explain the heart behind them in such a way as to make them un-keepable!

The point? The law is both imperishable and impossible and YOU need a Savior!

Jesus is that Savior, who lived a life that pleased God, died a death that appeased God, and now offers you that life for your's, so you can please God too. [Tweet This]

Will you bow your knee to this Jesus and allow Him to be your Master, King, Boss and God? Do it today!

How? (you might ask) No magic words, no hocus pocus. Simply own (admit) your inability to live a life pleasing to God. Confess everything in your life that He brings to mind that may have offended God, and surrender the CEO position in your life to Him. If you do this with all your heart, He will begin to show you how to change those things you confessed (this is called repentance) and He will guide you into a new life. A full and free life.

If you did that today, let me know! You can direct message me @MrBnd or you can post a comment below.

Thanks for reading today.

Ben

photo credit: OZinOH via photo pin cc

photo credit: AMagill via photo pin cc

 

Permit it at this time; for in this way it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” (Matt 3:15)

Today I want to take just a couple minutes of your time, and ask you to think about something: fulfilling righteousness. Three verses come to mind here. This one, where Jesus is asking John the Baptist to baptize Him. John begins to protest saying in effect, You should be baptizing me.

Then in Matt 5:17 Jesus says “Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish, but to fulfill.” He goes on to say that the Law would stand forever.
The third verse I want to throw in the little concoction is from Paul in Romans 8. This is where it gets a little hairy because the first two were about Jesus fulfilling the law, and we all love that. Yep – Jesus did it all, so the law is no more problem for us. We are not under the law brother, so don’t bother me with all this righteousness and holiness stuff.
But Paul has the audacity to say “in order that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.” (Rom 8:4) Does that feel a little out of context to you? Here is the whole thing from verse one:
There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.
So there it is. The law was weak because we were weak, so God sent Jesus who kept the law (every little bit of it!) and took our punishment for breaking it. What a plan! So the meeting of the requirements part is done by Jesus, now all that is left is for us to walk in the Spirit, and not fulfill the lusts of our flesh! Wait – how did it come back to us being good again?
It's not about doing good works to be acceptable, it's about being accepted so you can do good works! [Tweet this] We fulfill the law when we live the Spirit filled life. (See Ephesians 2:8-10)
Let me try one more time.
No Spirit inside  Cannot keep the Law  [        ]
Spirit inside        Law fulfilled                 [Check]
If you are struggling with trying to act good, quit it! You must have the Spirit of God on the inside. Ask Him to come in, and live in you. It is what He is hoping for. It is what you are hoping for too! Does this sound really good to you?
Some of you have been involved with Church your whole life, and struggled with every kind of sin and impurity. You feel shame and guilt, maybe so much so that you quit church, quit religion, quit all of it. It does not have to be that way. The Spirit inside can change everything!
You know what to do – Ask Him to change you – to come into you. You don’t need my words. Use your own, but ask Him today.
Then tell me about it – or tell someone about it.
If you are still not sure what to do or say – check my post called “What Peace.” It may help.
Thanks for reading today. Please let me know if this blog helps.
Ben

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.

(Matt 5:9 – NASB)
Today I would like to focus on this idea of peace. What peace is Jesus referring to? Is it simply tranquility, or the cessation of hostility? Is it some sort of détente like we had with the former USSR when they could no longer afford to maintain a cold war?
Consider what the father of John the Baptist said upon the birth of this man of God.
“Through the tender mercy of our God, with which the Dayspring from on high has visited us; To give light to those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death, To guide our feet into the way of peace.” (Luke 1:78-79 NKJV)
And again in the next chapter in regard to Jesus Himself: “Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!” (Luke 2:14)
The peace we are talking about here is the peace that Jesus offers, the ending of hostilities between God and man. Paul tells us in Romans 8 that the mind set on the flesh is actively hostile toward God. This war ends not when God ignores our sin, but when we surrender our lives to him.
With the coming of the Prince of Peace, Jesus, we can finally put down the weapons of our warfare against God: our hate, our rebellion, our self-righteousness, and we can take up the cause of Christ. We can become peacemakers – those who work to bring this same peace to others.
Once you know the peace that Jesus offers, you will never be content to sit by and let those around you wage useless war against the Lord of Hosts.
If you don’t know this peace for yourself, you can find it today. Call upon the name of Jesus. These beatitudes we have been looking at paint a great picture of the way to enter a relationship with Jesus, the Prince of Peace.
Talk to Jesus about it. (He can hear you wherever you are)
  • Admit your own poverty of spirit, and that you need God.
  • Confess and forsake all your sin. Tell Him about every sin you can remember doing, and ask Him for forgiveness.
  • Meekly submit your will – your desires, your plans – to Him.
  • Pursue righteousness and integrity in everything you do, again with His help.
  • Offer mercy and forgiveness to those who owe you or have hurt you.
  • Ask Jesus to purify your heart, and press into more and more purity, by meditating on His word. You are made clean through the God's Word, The Bible.
  • Then you will become a peacemaker too, and you experince His peace, you will want to draw others to His side as well.
Ben NelsonThanks for reading. If you have talked to Jesus about these things, tell me about it. You can message me on face book, or comment here, or tell a Christian you know. Get plugged into a church, and begin to live in His word the Bible. We live by the daily bread of His voice.
Ben
%d bloggers like this: