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Intensified Law, Sin Boldly

Our gospel is a continued except from Jesus’ infamous ‘Sermon on the Mount’.

Within the scripture,…

But Jesus’ tone has shifted.
Jesus denounces the rumor that he came to ‘abolish’ the law.

The Torah, teaching, is the first 5 Books in the Hebrew Bible (and Old Testament).
The Torah includes the Ten Commandments and the remaining legal code.

Who enjoys the law? Depends on the situation. 

According to Martin Luther and our Lutheran tradition, the legal code serves three purposes:

  1. Civil Law and Order
    It is a guideline for healthy interaction with God and neighbor while maintaining good order (and boundaries). In essence the legal code restrains us, especially from killing one another, due to the consequences. Honestly, in the words of Brandy Clarks’ Strips “the crime of passion aint worth the crime of fashion” (lol).
  2. A Mirror Reflecting Our Short-Comings
    Who enjoys seeing themselves in the mirror in the morning, without hair and make up done? NO ONE. The legal code is that mirror, which reflects to us the sins, failures, and short-comings we are reluctant to recognize and acknowledge.
  3. Points us to Christ
    Although the third use of the law is debated, after looking into the mirror, it points us to our need for God’s love, mercy, and grace through Jesus the Christ.

Jesus did not abolish the legal code, but intensified it while rebelling against the non-essentials. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 17, 2020 in Sermons

 

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SALT Shaker!

The gospel is an excerpt from Jesus’ infamous ‘Sermon on the Mount’.

Jesus speaks of being a light, which is the emphasized imagery of this Time after the Epiphany that perhaps you have grown weary of hearing…
Well, pause and take a deep breath.

I am not talking about the light, instead the SALT.

Jesus tells the gathered crowd to be the salt of the earth,
but what does that mean?

I am intrigued at times about how language changes throughout the decades, not to mention the centuries and the millennia. For example:

If someone is ‘salty’, they are upset of bitter about something minor.
But, does Jesus want us to be bitter about insignificant things?
I don’t think so.

Or reflecting on my Western States Youth Gathering adventure with a friend from church, I can not help but recall ‘salt’. We noted youth, sorry ladies but primarily female youth, who were sweet as sugar when chaperone eyes were watching but behaving inappropriately and vindictively when those eyes were not. We nicknamed them ‘salt’, because although appearing to be sugar, they were something different. We might say they wore a mask, were two-faced, or the popular and often deserved criticism of Christians as being hypocrites.
But, does Jesus want us to be two-faced, hypocrites? I doubt it. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 10, 2020 in Sermons

 

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