The Sermon on the Mount is one of the more well known passages in the Bible. While most scholars don’t think that there was an actual “sermon” during which Jesus made all of these statements (it’s usually viewed as an artificial scene in which the Gospel writer brings together different elements of Jesus’ teaching), Matt 5-7 sums up a lot of the religious thought and ethical declarations of The Teacher.
Last week at Experiemental Theology, Richard Beck went through the “Sermon” putting much of it in his own words – summarizing the passages as he interpreted them. It was a really interesting post and I think it is a valuable thing to do…so I copied him. Here’s my Sermon Remix…
*Contrary to some present appearances, in the end, it will be those who live their lives for God who will be satisfied and complete.
*You should be world-changers; and you should never lose your passion for your mission. When people look at you they should see something different – “zesty.” The quality of your character and actions should lead them to God.
*Be concerned about your way of life and the uprightness of your heart above all else.
*Harbored anger will destroy your relationships and lead to the destruction of your brothers and sisters. Reconciled relationships are more important than going to church.
*You can commit sin in your heart without actually going through with the act. Sometimes it is just as harmful. Do not lust after women in your mind and thereby turn them into objects with which to please yourself. Flee from that kind of thinking. Cut sin off at the root…in your thoughts.
*Honor your marriage vows and stay together at all costs. Only in the most extreme circumstances should you consider divorce.
*Be truthful always. Your character should be such that nobody should even have to question your honesty.
*Never pay back evil for evil, even on those who you might naturally label an “enemy.” But overcome evil with good.
*Don’t be showy in your good works or religious acts of devotion…if you are, it’s pretty clear that your motives aren’t pure.
*Pray for God’s will to be done, and for enough strength to be used for that purpose daily.
*Forgive people. Period.
*Be unconcerned with worldly wealth. It will not last. Love of money is antithetical to the love of God.
*Don’t worry. Stop worrying. Seriously, it’s not worth it.
*Don’t judge people. You do not know anyone else’s heart. And besides, you’ve got issues of your own.
*God is good. Pray to Him.
*It all boils down to the Golden Rule. You’ve heard it…do it.
*Not many people care to follow these teachings or give serious attention to their relationship with God. Don’t be one of the “many.” Build your life on this counsel, and your soul will live.