Epiphany 2022, Gospel of Matthew, Day 8 of 58

Gospel of Matthew, Start your year on sure footing, Day 8 of 58

Reading

Matthew 5:1-26

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew%205%3A1-26&version=NIV

Scripture

16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.

Observation

The Sermon on the Mount talks a lot about behavior more than belief. If we are saved by grace through faith (Ephesians 2:8-9), then why does Jesus talk so much more about our behavior than our belief? Could it be that true inward belief naturally emanates outwardly? I think this is the challenge of Jesus to Love God and Love Others, and not compartmentalize divine love and human love. Invariably, love for God and love for neighbor are tied together. For instance, the two tablets of the ten commandments cannot be separated. For instance, the first four commandments are about love of God, and the second six commandments are about love for neighbor.

Application

Do I practice my beliefs by sharing my love for God with my neighbor? The other day I was challenged in the Publix parking lot when I saw a mother with her two children with a sign asking for help? My cynical side said “Someone else will take care of it. Maybe it is a scam.” However, I thought about you, O Lord, and what you would do. Maybe I didn’t offer enough, but I did something. Help me to be moved by your example of love, mercy, and compassion.

Prayer

Dear God, help us to share the light of your love with our neighbor. May we never think that we can separate how we treat our neighbor from how we honor You. In Your holy name I pray. Amen.

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