MATTHEW 7:1_Judge not…
The kind of freedom Jesus teaches is not about keeping out of prison (although Jesus’ type of freedom could save you from that). Jesus wants to free souls.
A free soul gains wisdom.
Therefore a free soul has the ability to make wise decisions.
Wise decisions save from many forms of harm.
Wisdom is able to forgive and not carry the baggage of bitterness – which so often leads to physical sickness.
The wisest man who ever lived, the phenomenal King Solomon, teaches this principle in Proverbs 2:10-13 (KJV), “When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul; 11 Discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee: 12 To deliver thee from the way of the evil man, from the man that speaketh froward things; 13 Who leave the paths of uprightness, to walk in the ways of darkness.”
Notice where wisdom enters – your heart. There is more to learn – Proverbs 4:7-9 (KJV), “Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding. 8 Exalt her, and she shall promote thee: she shall bring thee to honour, when thou dost embrace her. 9 She shall give to thine head an ornament of grace: a crown of glory shall she deliver to thee.”
God of Wisdom, Help me be free from judgment and make wise decisions. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ is wisdom—He wants me to learn to be wise!
MATTHEW 6:19_and where thieves break through and steal.
We are over half way through this year. You’ve learned Jesus never leaves a stone unturned. When He makes a point, He makes a point! Also by now you may have gained insight into why Jesus is like that. Perhaps I’ve already said it a ga-zillion times … if you love someone, you’ll do anything to help them live free. You want to be sure not to leave any stone unturned on their path to freedom.
The Great Teacher and Master of Graphics [Jesus] goes further than stuff breaks – it can be stolen. If you’ve ever had something you held close in your heart stolen, you understand Jesus’ illustration. Some things you can replace. Things unique to you or your family, having sentimental value, can never be replaced.
It is not wrong for you to love the possession. Even the thief, whom you may feel bitterness toward, is in your life for a reason. This thief is a part of God’s ultimate plan. God wants to teach you how to love the thief, more than the possession. That does not mean the thief should not answer to the law and receive punishment (depending upon the situation). It means your heart is free to let go of the possession, but not the thief.
Holy Jesus, Help me love all the people You bring into my life. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ loves people more than stuff—He will help me!
MATTHEW 6:11_this day…
Psalm 118:24 (KJV), “This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.” Each day is new. Stop and think about that. It is brand new. It is not yesterday. Neither is it tomorrow. It is today! Every day has new needs and every day your Father has an abundant supply. It is His joy to bless you each day.
Lamentations 3:22-23 (KJV), “It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.23 They are new every morning: great is Thy faithfulness.”
Here is another part of God’s daily giving. God’s mercy protects from being consumed – daily.
If you think to be consumed is to be eaten you are not entirely wrong. The things that hold you in bondage eat away at life. You can be consumed by lust, greed, envy, bitterness, unforgiveness, and depression.
These are not come-and-go bondages. They consume daily – eating away love, joy, and peace. Because God is faithful and full of compassion, His mercy saves from being consumed by bondage. Just like each day is new – so are God’s mercies of compassion and faithfulness.
Freedom can be a process. But compassion is not. Just don’t cave in to doubt. God delivers. It’s a part of who He is. This may be the day for you!!!
I can understand why Jesus teaches, Give us this day!
Merciful God, Praise You that Your compassion saves me daily. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ’s mercy is new every day—He gives it to me!
MATTHEW 5:47_And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? Do not even the publicans so?
What is your first instinct when someone offends you? The silent treatment, right? “I won’t say anything mean – I just won’t say anything at all. As a matter of fact, I’ll never speak to them again!” Do you know there are actually people who live years without speaking to one another? Sadly, there are even those who go to their graves holding a grudge they never made an effort to resolve.
Matthew 18:18 (KJV), “Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”
I’m not taking any chances! I don’t want anyone going to heaven tied up in cords I placed on them because I was offended in some way. I want to loose grudge-holding cords in this life. I want to send the people in my life to heaven free from my grudges!
If I don’t loose any and all cords of bitterness, Jesus says I’m not doing anything radical. No more than a non-Christian. Not setting an example. Not being salt and light. Nothing about me attracts the lost and the searchers.
Stay with me and see how Christ completes this part of His power-packed sermon!
Lord Jesus, Please don’t let me bind anyone, but free all who hurt me. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ does not bind anyone—I must not either!
MATTHEW 5:40_And if any man will sue thee at law, and take away thy coat…
If there will ever be any kind of goodwill toward man in this life, it will come from Jesus’ crazy teachings about not fighting back. The reason? God’s power is released into your life when you have faith. Faith in the strength of God’s love to fight your enemies for you. Jesus has taught you not to seek revenge and not to slap back.
Check this one out:
Someone sues you. You are in the right. You tried, but were not able to settle out of court. The case goes against you – strongly against you. In other words, you lost all your savings! Now you have big money problems.
This is not easy to take, even if you were in the wrong. If you were in the right, it is heart wrenching. This can result in something worse than your money problems – the bondage of bitterness.
Bitterness, unforgiveness, and grudge-holding bind. Bitterness bondage chokes your spirit, contaminates your salt, and puts out your light.
The money problems place a painful curb on your life. The bitterness places a curb on your heart, and its ability to love.
Jesus becomes The Great Healer. He offers a radical cure.
Great Healer, I need Your help so I am not bitter when I am treated wrongly. I need Your wisdom to know how to respond. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ’s love holds no grudges—He will teach me!