Jesus calls us in Matthew 6 to live a lifestyle inclusive of fasting and prayer. All throughout the Bible there are examples of men and women after God’s own heart who exemplify this fasted lifestyle. We can take courage from their example to practice fasting in our own lives.
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Caring for the needy is foundational to the Christian life. We all face the same struggle of caring for the needy not out of compulsion, but from a willing heart of gratitude whose hope is not found in amassing wealth in this age but in the age to come.
One of the most difficult things to do in the world is to willingly allow ourselves to be affronted without righting the situation, but one of the ways Jesus calls us to testify to our faith in him is by doing just that.
It seems to make sense that divorce and oath keeping would be connected in the Sermon on the Mount. Marriage is a great and solemn oath.
Jesus tells us that the pure in heart will see God. In our war against lust we cut off those things that lead to sin, but the ultimate treasure we receive is deeper fellowship with the Father himself, attracting the world toward that same kind of relationship in the process.
Jesus' admonition regarding anger does not repudiate the Law, or establish a new Law, but highlights the goal of the Law.
God's law is not about rules to do or don't. It highlights our character. God is looking for people who are characterized by the heart and spirit that naturally produces righteous action. He wants a people, like Jesus, who fulfill the law by love, not obligation.
What makes a disciple of Jesus different from other people we encounter in our own culture? Jesus says we are salt for the earth and the light of the world. It is important for us to engage with people in our spheres of influence, but how we engage is also important as we help others learn about the character of God.