Published on July 12th, 2020 | by God's Squad DNA team0
Jesus fulfilling the Law, Matthew 5:17-18. June 10, 2020 by Corky
This reflection can also be viewed from our Youtube channel here
Hey, welcome to Ireland. Welcome to sunny Ireland. Today I’m going to be chatting about life and about god but first things first; coffee, follow me.
That’s better. I hope you managed to get a coffee also.
So let me attempt to set the scene of what I want to talk about today. So Jesus, Jesus of Nazareth, on the road with his band of brothers and sisters and he’s preaching and he’s teaching. He’s also healing people so large crowds have come to see him and hear him speak and to be healed. So he’s in the countryside, large crowds milling around and his own band of brothers and sisters.
Then he does this; he retreats up a hill and he calls his band of brothers and sisters, he calls his travel companions to him. He says follow me, come away with me. So what I find interesting immediately there is that there is this separation from the crowd. The people he has called to follow him, his band of brothers and sisters, you know, there’s a detachment there. He’s calling them away from him. I think that takes courage for those people, his band of brothers and sisters. It takes courage for us if we say we follow Christ because we come away from the safety of the crowd. So if God wants to get our attention, if Christ wants to get our attention he calls us away from the crowd.
He’d been teaching so he gathers his band of brothers and sisters around him. He starts to teach about this new way. This new way he has come to bring in. So what does he say? Well, this leads us onto this passage of scripture, God’s word that we’re going to talk about today.
So what Jesus said is recorded for us in the Gospel of Matthew, chapter 5, and verse 17 – 18. So I’m quoting, this is what Jesus says ‘ Don’t for one minute think that I have come to demolish the scriptures, God’s law or the prophets, I’m not here to demolish, I’m here to complete’
So that’s worth repeating; so Jesus again says ‘ Don’t for one minute think that I’m here to demolish the scriptures, God’s law or the prophets, I’m not here to demolish, I’m here to complete ‘ To add value to, to make all things new.
So that probably, I don’t know about you, that probably doesn’t make a whole lot of sense because, you know, we’re just taking one little small piece. We need to zoom out.
As I mentioned Jesus had been on the road, so this is a small part of a talk that he had been giving to the people, the crowds and to his band of followers and he had talked about many things that day. He painted a picture of what God’s word talks about, this word here, God’s word talks about. A picture of what you know, God talks about when he says I want you to live a particular type of life, and it’s called God’s law. God’s law for us.
So in the bigger picture, when we zoom out, Jesus had been talking that day about community, what it’s like to come away and follow him. But in the following of him, Jesus says this; the following of him requires things of us
What does it require? It requires us to make a decision about him.
It requires us to make a decision about following him. Then in the middle of all it or around all that, it requires us to repent, repentance.
So what is that? What does that mean? What does that look like? Repentance.
Repentance is a turning around. If we’re in sin and we’re repenting of sin it’s because we’ve gone away from God, we’re going our own way. Maybe we never knew God but we’re going our own way. We’re not going the way God wants us to go. God has laid down a plan for our lives in this book here, called the Bible. Maybe we’ve never known that way, so that’s what Jesus is talking about.
He’s saying that if you turn away from that life, if you turn back to me and I give you courage and strength to do that. You’ll learn a new way because in this talk, which is called the ‘sermon on the mount’ in all of this talk that Jesus was having that day. He was talking about heavy things, serious things, which are all prevalent in life today. You’ll see them on any social media and in any newspaper. He talks about murder, he’s talking about divorce, he’s talking about retaliation, he’s talking about oaths, he’s talking about, you know, the hating of our enemies, he’s talking about adultery.
So in this new way that Jesus is talking about, that he has come to bring, what does that look like, what does that new way look like?
It’s radically different, Jesus says in my new way, the way we deal with offence, and the way we deal with people who offend us is different. The way we deal with them is we forgive them. The way we deal with people, who perpetrate violent acts or speak badly against us and cause us to suffer, we forgive them.
He talks about money, the new way of dealing with money; he says that if we have money we share with others, we share with those that don’t.
Then he moves on to leadership and he talks about leadership. So there’s a new way of being a leader and dealing with leadership. He talks about putting others first, putting others first. Servant leadership and of course Jesus Christ modeled this all throughout the new testament to his band of brothers and these crowds, these people that followed him.
Then he talks about corrupt society. A new way of dealing with corrupt society.
He said look my new way is that I’ve come to bring a new order, in a new way. I’ve not come to crush the old order but bring in a new order.
Then he talks about relationships and this is unique, he talks about new ways of relating to each other in this new way that he’s brought in, this new way of following him. He talks about unique things like putting the other person first and treating the other person who we ourselves would like to be treated, this is Jesus’ way but this is good news for us.
This is good news and this good news talks about, hey life can be radically different if we follow Jesus. Again what does this look like, this radical difference? Well it talks about if we decided to turn away and follow Jesus that, hey, it’s not a rewriting of the past for us. It’s not a rewriting of the past for us. With Jesus leading with us following him, he sets a new course for us so we’re following him, this new course for our lives and a course with fresh purpose because he’s setting the purpose. The purpose of course is us, serving God, serving Christ in following Jesus.
So what does this good news mean for us? What’s the takeaway for us, what’s the practical stuff for us today from this good news or this message?
Well if we are those who have already answered the call and follow Jesus I believe the takeaway today is to live out our God created identity, live generously towards others like Christ Jesus lives generously towards us but to remember this also my brother Isaac when he spoke last week talked about the power of community we’re not made to live this life on our own, we’re made for community and we get the power to live this life through Christ Jesus and the Holy Spirit but if you don’t know God and here’s the good news, if you don’t know God, you can know him today, you can walk towards him because his son has died to heal us and to restore us in that broken relationship with the father because him and the father love us
If you have walked away from Jesus, the good news for you today is why not walk back? Why not turn around? Walk back towards him who loves us and wants a relationship with us
So finally thank you so much if you stayed with me this far.
This God stuff matters to me because you matter to me and I believe we all matter to God so thank you for your time, slainte and take care.
– Corky, Pilgrim chapter, Ireland
This reflection can also be viewed from our Youtube channel here