|Matthew 5:21-30 |
21 You have heard that it was said to them of old, 'You shall not kill, and whoever kills shall be in danger of the judgment.'
22 But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother will be subjected to judgment;3 and whoever says to his brother, 'Raca,' [in contempt] shall be in danger of the council; but he who says, 'you fool,' shall be in danger of hell fire. [From the Word of the Lord within: "Do not be misled; anger must be eliminated to enter the kingdom."]
23 Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and remember that your brother has something against you;
24 Leave your gift there before the altar and go your way; and first be reconciled to your brother, then come and offer your gift.
25 Agree with your adversary quickly, while you are on the way with him; lest at any time the adversary delivers you to the judge, and the judge delivers you to the officer, and you are cast into prison. [Jesus uses prison as a metaphor for Hell; he is pleading for men to do right and warning them of the consequences of doing wrong. Luke 12:35-59 gives more detail of this pleading.]
26 Truly I say that you shall by no means get out, until you have paid the last penny. [Notice! When in Hell you have paid the last penny for your debt of sins committed on earth, you get out; Hell is not forever. We trust in the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of those who believe. 1 Tim 4:9-10. See Is There Hope for All for more details and more scriptures that support Hell not being forever. The last penny is a metaphor for the amount of suffering you must endure. In Hell all criticisms of anyone or actions causing pain to anyone are replayed with you feeling the emotional and/or physical pain that you caused those to feel, (afterwards you are relieved, so the pain is not permanent). In this way you learn to hate the mistakes you made when on earth, resolving to never repeat those behaviors again; and as you learn to hate evil, you are drawn to goodness, which is being drawn to God. Thus, we learn from all our mistakes made while on earth.]
27 You have heard that it was said to those of old, 'You shall not commit adultery.'
28 But I say to you that whoever looks on a woman with lust for her has committed adultery with her already in his heart.4 [From the Word of the Lord within: "A man must learn control of his body. Mankind's failure—sexual immorality."]
29 If your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your body parts should perish, rather than your whole body should be cast into hell;5 [Looking on a woman with lust, committing adultery, is serious sin that leads to Hell. However, Jesus doesn't want us to maim ourselves; He wants us to come to Him so He can purify us through obedient faith to the commands we hear Him speak to us as we wait on Him in humble silence.]
30 And if your right hand offends you, cut it off and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your body parts should perish, rather than that your whole body should be cast into hell.
5 Notice, just after he tells us that looking at a woman with lust for her is committing adultery in our hearts, he tells us in the very next verse if our eye causes us to sin to pluck it out. This is how serious sexual lust is. For this you know, that no sexually immoral, impure person, or covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no man deceive you with vain words. For because of these things, the wrath of God comes upon the children of disobedience. Eph 5:5,6. But, he doesn't want us to maim ourselves. He is only illustrating how serious continuing to sin is, (see also Mat 18:8-9, Mark 7:21-23). Jesus is desperately trying to tell us that to enter the Kingdom and escape hell, sin has to go. He knew false ministers with false gospels promising freedom to continue to sin would arise after he left. Changes in our heart through the missing cross to purity can take away the desire of the hand, foot, and eye to cause us to sin.