Showing posts with the label Sermon on the Mount

Law or Liberty - which is it?

There are two schools of thought when it comes to the Old Testament: 1) It is out of date and no longer applies because we have the New Testament now; and 2) It has "some" meaning, but it really isn't all that relevant to us today. Both of these beliefs are a little bit askew of what Jesus taught, making them inaccurate.  There used to be an old adage about tossing the baby out with the bath water - if we toss out the Old Testament just because Jesus came on the scene, we are kind of doing just that.  In fact, Jesus reminded the people he taught of the importance of "keeping the Law", but he changed the focus of "how" it was to be kept.  Prior to his teaching, the Law was a set of rules to be kept by repeated self-effort.  If we look at what Jesus says about "keeping the Law", we will find that he simply says we are to obey it, teaching others to obey it, as well.  You may argue Jesus came to "fulfill" the Law, therefore making the

Climbing Companions

3 "You're blessed when you're at the end of your rope. With less of you there is more of God and his rule." (Matthew 5:3) I had never really paid much attention to the words that open the teaching of the Sermon on the Mount.  I just plunged ahead to the "good stuff" of the "blessed are you if..." and missed something in the opening verses.  As we begin to dig into the message of the Sermon, we need to just take a moment to consider the opening verses:   1-2  When Jesus saw his ministry drawing huge crowds, he climbed a hillside. Those who were apprenticed to him, the committed, climbed with him. Arriving at a quiet place, he sat down and taught his climbing companions. This is what he said... Jesus is seeing vast crowds attracted to his ministry.  You might have been among those who gathered that day if you had lived during that time.  Your aim in going to see this "great teacher" may have been to hear his message of hope for a nation,