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Thursday, October 6, 2016

Unveiled Lust (Matthew 5:27-28)

"You have heard that it was said, "Do not commit adultery," But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart."

The attached photo is not exactly Playboy centerfold material.

In 2008 major newspapers carried an article about a Muslim cleric in Saudi Arabia calling on women to wear a full veil, or hijab, that reveals only one eye. Fully robed women with only their eyes showing make men lust. Hmmm. I am against women dressing seductively. I know men are visual but, seriously, what kind of man is tempted by seeing a woman in full hijab?

In Jesus' day a most noted group of men were admired by their piety. They were called the Black and Blue group. They had bruises all over their faces as they ran into stuff to avoid looking at women.

Lust is a problem of the human heart. We can all thank Adam and Eve for that DNA download! Even if every woman in the world dressed modestly (and I am all for women dressing modestly) men would still have a problem with lust (and women with chocolate, shoes, and purses).

The heart of every problem is the problem of the human heart. The Pharisees proved that keeping the Law could not make one perfect, demonstrated by their hearts of lust and lack of love for others unlike themselves.

The Sermon on the Mount message, while condemning the Pharisees, gives Christ-followers hope. The same Spirit who raised Christ from the dead gives life to His followers--His life! His followers, therefore, experience His life as they yield to the reality of His presence in their lives. Only Christ meets the standard presented by the Sermon on the Mount. And He lives in me to produce His very life.

Questions for today's Chronological Bible reading (Matthew 5:21-7:29):
  • List the five "You have heard" statements in chapter five
  • Where does anger against a brother begin?
  • What is more important to God a gift on the altar or the right relationship with another?
  • Where does adultery begin?
  • What does the treatment of their wives tell you about the Pharisees?
  • In what way are men most like the Heavenly Father?
Matthew 6
  • What three acts of righteousness does Jesus mention?
  • How does Jesus differ on these matters from the Pharisees?
  • How does the Pharisee's view of God differ from the truly righteous man's view of God?
  • What attitude does the Lord's prayer demonstrate toward God?
  • Why does Jesus warn the people about storing up riches for themselves?
  • When Eve chose to eat the forbidden fruit what did she base her decision on? What does verse 22 teach you about self-restraint?
  • What three things do people worry about. Why does Jesus tell believers to stop worrying?
Matthew 7
  • Why is judging wrong?
  • How does Jesus describe the believer's relationship with God?
  • How does Jesus' teaching differ from that of the Pharisees?
Turning truth into prayer
Ask the Lord to open your eyes to all that you are in Christ Jesus.