Read Matthew 12:1-8. I love it when Jesus gives it to the Pharisees! It’s easy to picture them, with their noses in the air and their clean robes, standing just outside the crowds that followed Jesus. Close enough to watch what he was doing, but separated enough to show their disdain and judgement. Those Pharisees … More What if I’m a Pharisee?
Read Matthew 7:7-12 and Luke 11:5-13. He told us to ask, seek and knock. If we do, we’ll be given what we ask, find what we seek, and have doors opened. The one who answers, gives and opens is God. Jesus makes it clear on the mountain that if a father on this earth gives … More What if I can’t be bothered?
Read Matthew 6:9-15. He was talking about prayer. They asked for it (if you look in Luke 11), so they should have expected it to stretch them. Everything else that Jesus told them surely did. Most of the short prayer seemed pretty cut and dry: Give praise to God. Ask for his will to be … More What if the debt is too great?
Read Matthew 6:1-4 I had not thought of this in 30 years, but I’m smiling as I remember it now. A person had given us a very generous financial gift. We were very touched when we received the check from the church secretary. The donor? Anonymous. Even more touching. I prepared to write a thank … More What if my left hand finds out?
Read Matthew 5:43-48 “I love everyone.” Easy to say, hard to live. “I love everyone, but I don’t have to like them all.” It may be technically true, but is not very biblical. “I love those who are like-minded in Christ.” Now, you’re just falling off the path. What did Jesus say on the mountain? Love … More What if my enemy walks in?
Read Matthew 5:38-42 He was referring to the Law. Justice is pretty clear-cut. Lose an eye, take an eye. A tooth for a tooth. It’s easy to follow the logic of the law. I’m sure Jesus wondered why his people couldn’t follow it better. After all, it was easy to understand. But Jesus wasn’t just … More What if I get smacked?
Read Matthew 5:29-30. “The Devil made me do it!” At least, that’s what comedian Flip Wilson used to say. The blame game is nothing new. It started in the Garden and has never ended. What’s funny to me, though, in this passage from the Sermon on the Mount, is that Jesus seems to be letting … More What if it’s your eye’s fault?
Read Matthew 5:21-26 He was preaching to thousands. It’s hard to imagine that he would specifically intend this lesson for me, right? Yet, like his parable about the sower, I suppose he was spreading seeds here, and it’s for me to decide what kind of soil I will be. I can’t exactly pick and chose … More What if your brother’s mad at you?
Following Jesus is not easy. It’s joyful, wonderful, full of blessings, but not necessarily easy. He never said it would be, but he did say he would be with us. I’m so grateful for that! During his short time on this earth, Jesus shared with his followers (which includes those present and those to come–us) … More What if…