Again, the dominant culture dictates the ethics for a particular society. Did the Bible change? But our convictions did. That message is simply this: What Jesus teaches and even commands us to do does not change. Ok, out a pin in that for a second. All of Judah is taken over by the Roman Empire, the temple is destroyed, and there are the beginnings of persecution against the Jews, heavy taxes, and, what Rome does so well, the forced assimilation or whitewashing of the culture it has taken over. So many that he has to climb up to a higher elevation so everyone can see and hear him.
He does so by first reminding the people who they are: The Salt and Light. It is no longer good for anything, but is thrown out and trampled under foot. Then he adds:. Then Verse 14 and following:.
A city built on a hill cannot be hid. We well understand these metaphors. As believers, what can we add if we are bland? No, we are called to share with enthusiasm and great imagination the good news of Jesus Christ. But if our testimony and the way we live our faith is bland, then it does nothing to the culture we are added to.
The salt does nothing, it is worthless.
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Likewise, we are called to be a light — the city on a hill. When others look at you, do they see light? A light and a love for Christ that is so pronounced, you cannot help but to shine?! That cannot, nor should it be, be hidden. Not only does it make you feel better, it makes the whole world a better place. This is really critical to understand:.
2) God’s Plan is to Bless Us When We Repent (v 19 – 21)
The Law is, what? The 10 Commandments. The Decalogue. The prophets are the wisdom in the Old Testament books. Jesus is very much a Jew. Now, just as an aside, when we talk about Jesus flipping over some of the Old Testament thought, it really comes down to this:. No, here Jesus upholds the law, and he says that if you sin against the commandments, you will be called least in the Kingdom of Heaven.
No one wants that. The scribes and Pharisees seemed like they were righteous, but their actions proved otherwise. And Jesus has no tolerance for hypocrites…. So you see, Jesus is telling us to remain witnesses — the salt and light. And again, who is Jesus talking to? Those people who are being influenced by a new and dominant culture: The Romans and Hellenization.
Whole different sets of values, of gods, and of the way they act in community. Instead, love and stand up tall the way God commands us to — no matter what surrounds you.
To us today. Now if we believe the Bible is the Living Word — and we do — then what Jesus is saying applies to us in our lives on this very day. The Bible is not some historical document or some ancient words of wisdom.
It is the Living Word that speaks to and guides us today — in the scope of what we face today. So the mission is to remain constant in Christ. Slavery, beating children, and oppressing women are examples of how we incorrectly interpreted the Word. Yet there are still passages that we continue to wrestle with today.
That means never denying the revelation that Christ is Lord. Those, in a nutshell, are the commandments. Jesus tells us those are never reinterpreted. Again, if you know and love Jesus, there is no reason you would need to worry about any of these things. This world. We live in a tumultuous time, indeed. Political ideologies, injustice and inhumanity around the world and right here in our own country.
The law demands perfect righteousness from man. But under Grace, God supplies to us perfect righteousness through Christ. This means that God did not justify you make you righteous because of any cause or reason in you. God justified you because of Christ. Before we were saved, nothing we did could make us righteous. This cannot be true! Pastor Prince shares how he used to use his faith for many things—provision, healing, etc. Many times, we try to change our spouse and our children to improve our family situation.
But many times, our attempts to change our loved ones become law-based.
Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine In the very heart of your house, Your children like olive plants All around your table. This means that if you are blessed, your whole house will be blessed. Focus on the fact that because you are righteous in Christ, you are blessed of the Lord. When this is your focus, there is going to be an effect on your wife and your children. It says that they shall be taught by the Lord. Pastor Prince shares about a recent time when the Lord taught Justin a powerful truth about the Passover.
The result of the Lord teaching your children personally is that they shall experience great peace. What does God require for your children to have great shalom? The answer is in the next verse:. In righteousness you shall be established ; You shall be far from oppression, for you shall not fear; And from terror, for it shall not come near you. When you are settled in your heart that your righteousness is in Christ, there comes a peace on you that can be felt and even seen on your face. It affects the atmosphere of the home. When you are established in righteousness, your family will be blessed see Ps.
For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. When you confess our Lord Jesus, you are confessing healing, health, wholeness, provision. You need to say it. Surely, shall one say, in the Lord have I righteousness and strength : even to him shall men come; and all that are incensed against him shall be ashamed. In the Lord shall all the seed of Israel be justified, and shall glory.
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Not the High Priest of our thoughts or our emotions but our confession. For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need. This is referring to a confession of faith. Fortunately, you have not discarded morality along with religion, although you are in daily contact with those whose moral profession is at variance with their base and dishonest practices.
In spite of the low maxims and actions of many who surround you, you believe in the ideal of a moral life, feel attracted by it, and aim at realizing it in your conduct. But you must confess that the deeper your moral views and convictions are, the less you feel enabled to conform to them in your daily life. Why is it?
You lack true religion, which is the feeder of a truly moral life. Christ was the per- fectly religious as well as the perfectly moral man.