~*~ MATTHEW 5 ~*~
The headings of each passage:
* The Beatitudes
* Salt & Light
* The Fulfillment of the Law
* An Eye for an Eye
* Love for Enemies
Okay, I get that God can be seen as the hand of correction here, but there had to be more to it; my heart could feel it as I read each section,(Matthew 5:1-12 is The Beatitudes. 5:13-16 is Salt and Light, and so on...) but my eyes couldn't see it. It wasn't until I was prompted to look at Matthew 5 as a whole, rather than as many little sections and dissected stories, that I started to see a bigger picture: In Matthew 5, God's hand is pointing us to a world of love and peace, joy and healing, safety and all that is good, that lies beyond the realm of the human ego...
If you want God's favour, God's blessings, God's presence, God's hand in your life, you need to move beyond your ego. Jesus shows you how. He is telling us not to be swayed by insult, anger, lust, greed, passing feelings and so on. For as long as we're controlled by ego, by pride and vanity, we're going to miss the greater blessings, greater peace, greater joy, greater freedom, and so on. Jesus is telling us how we can avoid being controlled, manipulated and imprisoned by any and every emotion that works to darken our hearts and lives.
Jesus is not trying to give us a bunch of rules and regulations; nor is He offering condemnation. His desire is to set us free from bondage, not chain us to it. "It is for freedom that Christ has set us free..." Galatians 5:1 We can't forget that when reading these verses. If we do, all of what He is saying would become quite daunting. Rather, we must try to see what He is saying, and what He is leading us to, in view of God sending Him to set us free from sin, death, and the consequences of both, and through the fact that He was sent by Love, in Love, with Love and for Love.
In these passages, (and in all that He does and is) Jesus is calling us to where God is. To where God dwells. To where God's peace, love, joy, healing, and so on, can be, and will be ours in abundance -- if we want it. He is God's hand, showing us the way to The Promised Land; it's up to us whether or not we want to go there.
How do we get there? Let Jesus show you the way...