Matthew – Fulfilled
“Sticks and stones will break my bones but words will never harm me!”, we used to shout to our taunters on the school playground. But then as we grew older, we find that words do hurt, maim and even murder who we are trying to be and do. Words said in ugly tones stick in our memory. We try to overcome them. We pray to overcome them, but they come back to mind when taunted again by others. Those words that brought you down as a child, making you feel never good enough, have a way of coming to mind as you anxiously prepare to accomplish a challenging task. The evil one is the culprit, but Jesus is the overcomer in us. Praying in Jesus Name will cause those thoughts of feeling “less than” to flee when you ask God to give you higher thoughts. If we do not pray for help in this we find ourselves hurting others as we have been hurt. Words kill.
Matthew 5, The Message
21-22 “You’re familiar with the command to the ancients, ‘Do not murder.’ I’m telling you that anyone who is so much as angry with a brother or sister is guilty of murder. Carelessly call a brother ‘idiot!’ and you just might find yourself hauled into court. Thoughtlessly yell ‘stupid!’ at a sister and you are on the brink of hellfire. The simple moral fact is that words kill.
23-24 “This is how I want you to conduct yourself in these matters. If you enter your place of worship and, about to make an offering, you suddenly remember a grudge a friend has against you, abandon your offering, leave immediately, go to this friend and make things right. Then and only then, come back and work things out with God.
25-26 “Or say you’re out on the street and an old enemy accosts you. Don’t lose a minute. Make the first move; make things right with him. After all, if you leave the first move to him, knowing his track record, you’re likely to end up in court, maybe even jail. If that happens, you won’t get out without a stiff fine.
Tough stuff, right? Jesus has taken the Law, the commandment, “Do not murder” to a much higher level of thinking. This love others stuff includes not hurting each other with our words and actions. Even if a brother or sister kills your innermost being with his/her words. We must love them back without a grudge. This is forgiveness on a level above humankind. This is Kingdom attitude. This is Jesus. Love God…love others…”as I have loved you.”
Dear Heavenly Father,
I repent of all grudges and desire your help to quickly forgive a brother or sister. I do not have to agree with others to love. Thank you for this message to me this very morning. Help me to extend the kind of grace, mercy and forgiveness you have extended to me. I cannot forgive sin. That’s your work. But I can forgive words offensive to my character and put the offender in your hands. My job is to love. Help us to work things out with others and make things right with You. This is serious. This is freedom. This is You.
In Jesus Name, Amen