We’ve all probably heard and read this chapter so many times. But, it contains so much instruction from Jesus – the central tenants of Christian discipleship.
There is so much power in Jesus’ teaching in regards to helping people understand how the Old Covenant is done away with by Jesus’ coming to earth. I’m sure many chins dropped when Jesus delivered this statement:
21″You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘Do not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ 22But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment.
Like some who profess to be Christians today, it’s easy to say, “I may not be perfect, but I do pretty good when it comes to the ‘Big 10′”. Not so much. What about this one:
27″You have heard that it was said, ‘Do not commit adultery.’ 28But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.
It’s clear that when we’ve broken one, we’ve sinned…period. It’s not a matter of if you’ve done more good than bad, or if you’re better than someone else. If you’re feeling pretty good about yourself because you compare yourself to anyone but Jesus, you might want to reconsider.
And, comparing ourselves to Jesus only points out that we can’t make it on our own. That’s the whole point of the New Covenant. We need the redemption of Jesus, who took on our sin at the cross and paid the penalty once and for all.
Lastly, verse 48 jumped out at me:
48Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
Impossible? Well, it’s a journey. None of us is perfect. The Bible is clear about that in Romans. Yet, with a soft heart, and eye always on Jesus, and a band of brothers to help keep us in line, we will be moving more towards perfection through Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit inside us.