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The Bible In A Year: Day 80

Deuteronomy 10-11
Psalm 79
Luke 6:27-49

Deuteronomy 10-11

Moses recounts the destruction of the first set of tablets containing the Ten Commandments and tells about how God made him the second set at the top of the mountain, where he stayed and fasted as before for 40 days.

He then gives some good reasons for obedience to God, because most of his warnings so far have been the consequences of disobedience. He lays it out very simply, and reminds them that they seen all that God did in Egypt and the wilderness with their own eyes, this isn’t stories based on the witness of others. They are given a simple choice between disobedience and curses, or obedience and blessings.

Luke 6:27-49

Jesus’ teachings on love take a radio turn here, when he commands that we love our enemies. This is a major departure from what was considered the norm for the people in his day. They understood to love their neighbors, but enemies?

Gk Chesterton said “we’re commanded to love our neighbors and our enemies because many times they’re the same people” and this can be true, but it can also be the person you’ve never liked or been able to get along with, it may be a person that hates you or has done harm to you, or it could be someone you’ve never even known. The point is, that if you love friends and enemies then you love everyone. We are all children of the same God, his love extends to everyone, and since we are to love like Jesus loved, that means there’s no person excluded. This doesn’t mean it’s easy, in fact it can be one of the most difficult of the commandments from Jesus to follow through on.

He goes on to warn about judging others and being a hypocrite. His teaching here is often misconstrued to mean we shouldn’t judge others and we shouldn’t point out sinful behavior when we see it, but that’s not really whats being said. Jesus said to first remove the log from your own eye, then you’ll be able to help remove the splinter from your brother. Judge others how you’ll wish to be judged, be fair and don’t be a hypocrite. If you have a particular sin in your life and you see someone struggling with it, the wrong move would be to publicly criticize them, but if you are able to overcome it then it would be a good thing to help them to overcome it too.

As Christians we are called to judge actions but not persons. We don’t know what a person is going through, what their motivations were, how culpable they are in a situation, but we can say that the act itself is inherently sinful. Saying one does not say both.

Jesus follows it up by asking why people call him “Lord” but refuse to do what he says? We can’t deceive ourselves and think we’ll have a back door into heaven because we said some prayers once or we were baptized as babies. Those may be the way to begin the relationship, but unless we remain in him, and that means listening and following his voice, we’ll be the ones saying “Lord Lord” on the last day, and he’ll tell us to depart from him.

Tomorrow’s Readings:
Deuteronomy 12-14
Psalm 80
Luke 7:1-35

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