MATTHEW CHAPTER 5

OBSERVATION STAGE

TABLE OF CONTENTS

The purpose of the observation stage is to maintain focus on the text at hand within the normative rules of language, context and logic which limits the observer to the content offered by the book of Matthew. This will serve to avoid going on unnecessary tangents elsewhere; and more importantly, it will provide the framework for a proper and objective comparison with passages located elsewhere in Scripture.

Remember that something elsewhere may be true, but in the text at hand it may not be in view.

Note that the context chapter 5 is dependent upon an understanding of the end of chapter 4:

****** EXCERPT FROM MATTHEW CHAPTER 4 ******

JESUS WENT THROUGHOUT ALL GALILEE TEACHING IN THE SYNAGOGUES, PROCLAIMING THE GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM - MAINLY TO JEWS; AND HEALING EVERY KIND OF DISEASE AND SICKNESS. THE REPORTS ABOUT HIM WENT OUT INTO ALL SYRIA, FROM WHERE THEY BROUGHT TO HIM ALL THE SICK - AND HE HEALED THEM TOO. FURTHERMORE, LARGE CROWDS FOLLOWED HIM FROM GALILEE, DECAPOLIS, JERUSALEM, JUDEA AND BEYOND THE JORDAN

****** END OF EXCERPT FROM MATTHEW CHAPTER 4 ******

I) [Mt 5:1-12]:

A) HAVING SEEN CROWDS OF PEOPLE FOLLOWING HIM, JESUS WENT UP TO A LOCATION IN ONE OF THE MOUNTAINS NEAR CAPERNAUM AROUND THE SEA OF GALILEE, EVIDENTLY TO GET AWAY FROM THEM. THERE ON THE MOUNTAINSIDE HE SAT DOWN AS WAS THE CUSTOM WHEN RABBIS TAUGHT OTHERS. WHEN HIS DISCIPLES CAME TO HIM, HE BEGAN TO INSTRUCT THEM

B) THE WORD RENDERED "BLESSED" APPEARS THROUGHOUT THIS SECTION OF MATTHEW CHAPTER 5 CONVEYING THE SENSE OF BEING SINGULARLY BLESSED BY THE GRACE OF GOD, I.E., BY GOD'S UNMERITED FAVOR. THE NINE BLESSINGS ARE STIPULATED AS REWARDS WHICH ARE DECLARED WILL BE BESTOWED BY GOD UPON PARTICULAR BELIEVERS, HENCE NOT ALL BELIEVERS, BECAUSE THEY HAVE LED SINGULARLY FAITHFUL LIVES CHARACTERIZED IN THE MANNER STIPULATED THROUGHOUT THE PASSAGE. AUTHOR MATTHEW STIPULATED THAT JUST LIKE THE PROPHETS OF THE PAST THESE PARTICULAR BELIEVERS WILL RECEIVE REWARDS IN THE TEMPORAL AS WELL AS HEAVENLY LIFE COMMENSURATE WITH THEIR FAITHFULNESS. SO UNBELIEVERS AND LESS FAITHFUL BELIEVERS ARE NOT IN VIEW. FURTHERMORE, SALVATION UNTO ETERNAL LIFE CANNOT BE IN VIEW BECAUSE THAT IS A GIFT, NOT A REWARD

C) THE PHRASE RENDERED "BLESSED ARE THE POOR IN SPIRIT" HAS BELIEVERS EXCLUSIVELY IN VIEW; FOR ONLY BELIEVERS HAVE EXPRESSED REPENTANCE TO A MOMENT OF FAITH ALONE IN CHRIST ALONE UNTO ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN WHICH IS EVIDENCED WHEN ONE EXPRESSES BEING POOR IN SPIRIT ACCORDING TO THE CONTEXT OF MATTHEW CHAPTERS 1-5. PARTICULAR BELIEVERS WHO HAVE LED SINGULARLY FAITHFUL LIVES, HENCE NOT ALL BELIEVERS, ARE CHARACTERIZED IN VERSE 3 AS BEING POOR IN SPIRIT, I.E., AS HAVING DEMONSTRATED THEIR TOTAL LACK OF CAPACITY TO BE RIGHTEOUS BEFORE GOD. SO A SPIRITUAL POVERTY, NOT A TEMPORAL ONE, IS IN VIEW IN CHAPTER 5. UNBELIEVERS ARE NOT IN VIEW BECAUSE BY DEFINITION THEY HAVE NEVER DEMONSTRATED SUCH A MOMENT OF BEING POOR IN SPIRIT BEFORE GOD WHICH IS IMPLIED WHEN ONE TRUSTS ALONE IN GOD'S SON ALONE FOR ETERNAL LIFE TO BECOME A BELIEVER. THE REWARD FOR THE PARTICULAR BELIEVERS BECAUSE OF THEIR FAITHFULNESS IS CONVEYED BY THE PHRASE RENDERED "THEIRS IS THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN," A STATEMENT OF POSSESSION OF THE KINGDOM EVIDENTLY COMMENSURATE WITH THE QUALITY AND DURATION OF BEING POOR IN SPIRIT IN ONE'S TEMPORAL LIFE. POSSESSION OF THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN IMPLIES THAT ONE HAS ALREADY GAINED ENTRANCE INTO IT IN ORDER TO RECEIVE OWNERSHIP OF IT, CORROBORATING THAT ONLY BELIEVERS ARE IN VIEW

D) THE PHRASE RENDERED "BLESSED ARE THOSE WHO MOURN" CONTINUES TO HAVE BELIEVERS EXCLUSIVELY IN VIEW. FOR ONLY BELIEVERS HAVE EXPRESSED REPENTANCE TO A MOMENT OF FAITH ALONE IN CHRIST ALONE UNTO ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN WHICH IS EVIDENCED WHEN ONE DEMONSTRATES MOURNING ACCORDING TO THE CONTEXT OF MATTHEW CHAPTERS 1-5. PARTICULAR BELIEVERS WHO HAVE LED SINGULARLY FAITHFUL LIVES, HENCE NOT ALL BELIEVERS, ARE CHARACTERIZED IN VERSE 4 AS MOURNING IN THE SENSE THAT THEIR TEMPORAL LIVES ARE CHARACTERIZED AS EXPERIENCING GRIEF OVER THEIR TOTAL LACK OF CAPACITY TO BE RIGHTEOUS BEFORE GOD. THEY MOURN THEIR SPIRITUAL POVERTY. UNBELIEVERS ARE NOT IN VIEW BECAUSE BY DEFINITION THEY HAVE NEVER DEMONSTRATED A MOMENT OF SUCH MOURNING WHICH IS IMPLIED WHEN ONE TRUSTS ALONE IN GOD'S SON ALONE FOR ETERNAL LIFE TO BECOME A BELIEVER. THIS BEATITUDE COMPLEMENTS THE PREVIOUS BEATITUDE, FOR THOSE PARTICULAR BELIEVERS WHO MOURN ARE THOSE WHO ARE POOR IN SPIRIT. THE REWARD FOR BELIEVERS WHO CHARACTERISTICALLY MOURN IS TO BE COMFORTED BY GOD IN THEIR TEMPORAL LIVES COMMENSURATE WITH THE QUALITY AND DURATION OF THEIR MOURNING, NOT THE LEAST OF WHICH IS ASSURANCE OF ETERNAL LIFE IN THE ETERNAL KINGDOM OF HEAVEN

E) THE PHRASE RENDERED "BLESSED ARE THE MEEK CONTINUES TO HAVE BELIEVERS EXCLUSIVELY IN VIEW; FOR ONLY BELIEVERS HAVE EXPRESSED REPENTANCE TO A MOMENT OF FAITH ALONE IN CHRIST ALONE UNTO ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN WHICH IS EVIDENCED WHEN ONE EXPRESSES MEEKNESS ACCORDING TO THE CONTEXT OF MATTHEW CHAPTERS 1-5. PARTICULAR BELIEVERS WHO HAVE LED SINGULARLY FAITHFUL LIVES, HENCE NOT ALL BELIEVERS, ARE CHARACTERIZED IN VERSE 5 AS MEEK IN THEIR TEMPORAL LIVES IN THE SENSE OF BEING HUMBLE AND SUBMISSIVE TO GOD - ACKNOWLEDGING IN THEIR THOUGHTS, WORDS AND DEEDS THAT AT NO TIME CAN THEY BE RIGHTEOUS BEFORE GOD. UNBELIEVERS ARE NOT IN VIEW BECAUSE BY DEFINITION THEY HAVE NEVER DEMONSTRATED FOR A MOMENT SUCH MEEKNESS WHICH IS IMPLIED WHEN ONE TRUSTS ALONE IN GOD'S SON ALONE FOR ETERNAL LIFE TO BECOME A BELIEVER. THIS BEATITUDE COMPLEMENTS THE PREVIOUS BEATITUDES - FOR THOSE PARTICULAR BELIEVERS WHO ARE MEEK ARE THOSE WHO ARE POOR IN SPIRIT, WHO ARE THOSE WHO MOURN. THE REWARD FOR BELIEVERS BEING CHARACTERISTICALLY MEEK IS STIPULATED AS INHERITING THE EARTH IN THE SENSE OF RECEIVING IT AS AN INHERITED POSSESSION WHEN IT IS UNDER THE RULE OF THE ETERNAL KINGDOM OF HEAVEN ON EARTH COMMENSURATE WITH THE QUALITY AND DURATION OF THE MEEKNESS. INHERITING THE EARTH IN THIS CONTEXT IMPLIES THAT ONE HAS ALREADY GAINED ENTRANCE INTO THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN IN ORDER TO RECEIVE IT AS AN INHERITANCE CORROBORATING THAT ONLY BELIEVERS ARE IN VIEW

F) THE PHRASE RENDERED "BLESSED ARE THOSE WHO HUNGER AND THIRST FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS" CONTINUES TO HAVE BELIEVERS EXCLUSIVELY IN VIEW; FOR ONLY BELIEVERS HAVE EXPRESSED REPENTANCE TO A MOMENT OF FAITH ALONE IN CHRIST ALONE UNTO ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN WHICH IS EVIDENCED WHEN ONE HUNGERS AND THIRSTS FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS ACCORDING TO THE CONTEXT OF MATTHEW CHAPTERS 1-5. PARTICULAR BELIEVERS WHO HAVE LED SINGULARLY FAITHFUL LIVES, HENCE NOT ALL BELIEVERS, ARE CHARACTERIZED IN VERSE 6 AS ONE WHO HUNGERS AND THIRSTS FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS IN THE SENSE OF EARNESTLY DESIRING FOR GOD TO EXPRESS HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS IN THEM, THROUGH THEM AND AROUND THEM IN THE WORLD, WHICH ONLY GOD CAN PROVIDE FOR THEM, IMPLYING A LACK OF IT IN THEMSELVES AND THE WORLD. UNBELIEVERS ARE NOT IN VIEW BECAUSE BY DEFINITION THEY HAVE NEVER DEMONSTRATED FOR A MOMENT SUCH HUNGER AND THIRST WHICH IS IMPLIED WHEN ONE TRUSTS ALONE IN GOD'S SON ALONE FOR ETERNAL LIFE TO BECOME A BELIEVER. THIS BEATITUDE COMPLEMENTS THE PREVIOUS BEATITUDES - FOR THOSE PARTICULAR BELIEVERS WHO HUNGER AND THIRST IN SUCH A MANNER FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS ARE THOSE WHO ARE POOR IN SPIRIT, ARE THOSE WHO MOURN, AND ARE THOSE WHO ARE MEEK. THE REWARD FOR BELIEVERS WHOSE TEMPORAL LIVES ARE CHARACTERIZED BY HUNGERING AND THIRSTING IN SUCH A MANNER FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS IS TO BE FILLED IN THE SENSE OF BEING CONTROLLED BY THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD IN THEIR TEMPORAL LIVES COMMENSURATE WITH THE QUALITY AND DURATION OF THAT HUNGERING AND THIRSTING. NOTE THAT ONLY BELIEVERS ARE IN VIEW HERE BECAUSE UNBELIEVERS BY DEFINITION DO NOT CHOOSE TO BE FILLED / CONTROLLED BY THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD

G) THE PHRASE RENDERED "BLESSED ARE THE MERCIFUL, FOR THEY SHALL OBTAIN MERCY" IN MT 5:7 CONTINUES TO HAVE BELIEVERS EXCLUSIVELY IN VIEW; FOR ONLY BELIEVERS HAVE EXPRESSED REPENTANCE TO A MOMENT OF FAITH ALONE IN CHRIST ALONE UNTO ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN BY THE MERCY OF GOD, WHICH IS EVIDENCED WHEN ONE EXPRESSES GODLY MERCY ACCORDING TO THE CONTEXT OF MATTHEW CHAPTERS 1-5. ALTHOUGH ALL BELIEVERS HAVE RECEIVED THE MERCY OF GOD WHEN THEY BELIEVED AND RECEIVED ETERNAL LIFE; ONLY PARTICULAR BELIEVERS WHO HAVE LED SINGULARLY FAITHFUL LIVES, HENCE NOT ALL BELIEVERS, ARE CHARACTERIZED IN VERSE 7 AS MERCIFUL IN THE SENSE OF DEMONSTRATING A GODLY, AGAPE-SELF SACRIFICIAL LOVE IN BEING GRACIOUS, KIND, COMPASSIONATE AND FORGIVING TOWARD ALL OTHERS. UNBELIEVERS ARE NOT IN VIEW BECAUSE BY DEFINITION THEY HAVE NEVER DEMONSTRATED FOR A MOMENT SUCH MERCY THE CAPACITY OF WHICH IS IMPLIED WHEN ONE HAS TRUSTED ALONE IN GOD'S SON ALONE FOR ETERNAL LIFE TO BECOME A BELIEVER. THIS BEATITUDE COMPLEMENTS THE PREVIOUS BEATITUDES - FOR THOSE BELIEVERS WHO ARE MERCIFUL ARE THOSE WHO ARE POOR IN SPIRIT, ARE THOSE WHO MOURN, ARE THOSE WHO ARE MEEK, ARE THOSE WHO HUNGER AND THIRST FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS. THE REWARD FOR BELIEVERS BEING CHARACTERISTICALLY MERCIFUL IS TO OBTAIN MERCY FROM GOD COMMENSURATE WITH THE QUALITY AND DURATION OF THEIR BEING MERCIFUL TO OTHERS. NOTE THAT ONLY BELIEVERS ARE IN VIEW HERE BECAUSE UNBELIEVERS DO NOT AND CANNOT CHOOSE TO BE MERCIFUL IN A GODLY MANNER

H) THE PHRASE RENDERED "BLESSED ARE THE PURE IN HEART " IN MT 5:8 CONTINUES TO HAVE BELIEVERS EXCLUSIVELY IN VIEW; FOR ONLY BELIEVERS HAVE EXPRESSED REPENTANCE TO A MOMENT OF FAITH ALONE IN CHRIST ALONE UNTO ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN WHICH IS EVIDENCED WHEN ONE EXPRESSES A MOMENT OF BEING PURE IN HEART ACCORDING TO THE CONTEXT OF MATTHEW CHAPTERS 1-5. PARTICULAR BELIEVERS WHO HAVE LED SINGULARLY FAITHFUL LIVES, HENCE NOT ALL BELIEVERS, ARE CHARACTERIZED IN VERSE 8 AS PURE IN HEART IN THE SENSE OF HAVING A GODLY POINT OF VIEW IN ALL THINGS. UNBELIEVERS ARE NOT IN VIEW BECAUSE BY DEFINITION THEY HAVE NEVER DEMONSTRATED FOR A MOMENT SUCH PURITY IF HEART THE CAPACITY OF WHICH IS IMPLIED WHEN ONE HAS TRUSTED ALONE IN GOD'S SON ALONE FOR ETERNAL LIFE TO BECOME A BELIEVER. THIS BEATITUDE COMPLEMENTS THE PREVIOUS BEATITUDES, FOR THOSE BELIEVERS WHO ARE PURE IN HEART, ARE THOSE WHO ARE POOR IN SPIRIT, ARE THOSE WHO MOURN, ARE THOSE WHO ARE MEEK, ARE THOSE WHO HUNGER AND THIRST FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS, ARE THOSE WHO ARE MERCIFUL. THE REWARD FOR BELIEVERS BEING CHARACTERISTICALLY PURE IN HEART IS THAT THEY SHALL SEE GOD COMMENSURATE WITH THE QUALITY AND DURATION OF BEING PURE IN HEART. THE REWARD OF SEEING GOD FOR BEING CHARACTERISTICALLY PURE IN HEART IMPLIES BEING REWARDED WITH SEEING GOD IN THE SENSE OF AN INTIMATE FELLOWSHIP WITH GOD TO BE EXPERIENCED IN THE TEMPORAL LIFE AS WELL AS A GREATER INTIMACY WITH HIM IN THE ETERNAL KINGDOM OF HEAVEN. NOTE THAT ALL BELIEVERS WILL SEE GOD IN THE ETERNAL KINGDOM OF HEAVEN WHEN THEY BEGIN EXPERIENCING ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF GOD, BUT SOME MORE INTIMATELY THAN OTHERS DEPENDING UPON THEIR FAITHFULNESS IN THEIR TEMPORAL LIVES

I) THE PHRASE RENDERED "BLESSED ARE THE PEACEMAKERS " IN MT 5:9 CONTINUES TO HAVE BELIEVERS EXCLUSIVELY IN VIEW; FOR ONLY BELIEVERS HAVE EXPRESSED REPENTANCE TO A MOMENT OF FAITH ALONE IN CHRIST ALONE UNTO ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN WHICH IS EVIDENCED WHEN ONE EXPRESSES A MOMENT OF BEING A PEACEMAKER ACCORDING TO THE CONTEXT OF MATTHEW CHAPTERS 1-5. PARTICULAR BELIEVERS WHO HAVE LED SINGULARLY FAITHFUL LIVES, HENCE NOT ALL BELIEVERS, ARE CHARACTERIZED IN VERSE 9 AS PEACEMAKERS IN THE SENSE OF REPRESENTING THE PLAN OF PEACE BETWEEN GOD AND MAN THROUGH A MOMENT OF FAITH ALONE IN HIS SON JESUS CHRIST ALONE TO RESOLVE THE PROBLEM OF ENMITY / SIN BETWEEN GOD AND MAN ONE INDIVIDUAL AT A TIME. UNBELIEVERS ARE NOT IN VIEW BECAUSE BY DEFINITION THEY HAVE NEVER DEMONSTRATED SUCH A MOMENT OF BEING A PEACEMAKER, THE CAPACITY OF WHICH IS IMPLIED WHEN ONE HAS TRUSTED ALONE IN GOD'S SON ALONE FOR ETERNAL LIFE TO BECOME A BELIEVER. THIS BEATITUDE COMPLEMENTS THE PREVIOUS BEATITUDES, FOR THOSE BELIEVERS WHO ARE PEACEMAKERS, ARE THOSE WHO ARE POOR IN SPIRIT, ARE THOSE WHO MOURN, ARE THOSE WHO ARE MEEK, ARE THOSE WHO HUNGER AND THIRST FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS, ARE THOSE WHO ARE MERCIFUL, ARE THOSE WHO ARE PURE IN HEART. THE REWARD FOR BELIEVERS CHARACTERISTICALLY BEING PEACEMAKERS IS THAT THEY SHALL BE CALLED SONS OF GOD COMMENSURATE WITH THE QUALITY AND DURATION OF BEING PEACEMAKERS. THE REWARD OF BEING CALLED SONS OF GOD FOR CHARACTERISTICALLY BEING PEACEMAKERS IMPLIES A DECLARATION BY GOD OF THEIR SPIRITUAL MATURITY AND ALL THE TEMPORAL AND ETERNAL REWARDS THAT ARE COMMENSURATE WITH SUCH MATURITY

J) THE PHRASE RENDERED "BLESSED ARE THOSE WHO HAVE BEEN PERSECUTED FOR THE SAKE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS" IN MT 5:10 CONTINUES TO HAVE BELIEVERS EXCLUSIVELY IN VIEW; FOR ONLY BELIEVERS HAVE EXPRESSED REPENTANCE TO A MOMENT OF FAITH ALONE IN CHRIST ALONE UNTO ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN WHICH IS EVIDENCED WHEN ONE EXPRESSES A MOMENT OF BEING PERSECUTED FOR THE SAKE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS ACCORDING TO THE CONTEXT OF MATTHEW CHAPTERS 1-5. PARTICULAR BELIEVERS WHO HAVE LED SINGULARLY FAITHFUL LIVES, HENCE NOT ALL BELIEVERS, ARE CHARACTERIZED IN VERSE 10 AS THOSE WHO HAVE BEEN PERSECUTED FOR THE SAKE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS BECAUSE THEY WERE REPRESENTING IN THEIR TEMPORAL LIVES THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD IN HIS PLAN OF PEACE BETWEEN GOD AND MAN THROUGH A MOMENT OF FAITH ALONE IN HIS SON JESUS CHRIST ALONE TO RESOLVE THE PROBLEM OF ENMITY / SIN BETWEEN GOD AND MAN ONE INDIVIDUAL AT A TIME. UNBELIEVERS ARE NOT IN VIEW BECAUSE BY DEFINITION THEY HAVE NEVER DEMONSTRATED SUCH A MOMENT OF BEING PERSECUTED FOR THE SAKE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS, THE CAPACITY OF WHICH IS IMPLIED WHEN ONE HAS TRUSTED ALONE IN GOD'S SON ALONE FOR ETERNAL LIFE TO BECOME A BELIEVER. THIS BEATITUDE COMPLEMENTS THE PREVIOUS BEATITUDES, FOR THOSE BELIEVERS WHO ARE PERSECUTED FOR THE SAKE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS, ARE THOSE WHO ARE POOR IN SPIRIT, WHO MOURN, WHO ARE MEEK, WHO HUNGER AND THIRST FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS, WHO ARE MERCIFUL, WHO ARE PURE IN HEART, WHO ARE PEACEMAKERS. THE REWARD FOR BELIEVERS CHARACTERISTICALLY BEING PERSECUTED FOR THE SAKE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS IS STIPULATED AS THE SAME AS THAT WHICH IS REWARDED FOR BEING POOR IN SPIRIT, I.E., POSSESSION OF THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN, COMMENSURATE WITH THE QUALITY AND DURATION OF THEIR BEING PERSECUTED FOR THE SAKE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS. THE REWARD OF POSSESSION OF THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN IMPLIES THAT ONE HAS ALREADY GAINED ENTRANCE INTO IT IN ORDER TO RECEIVE OWNERSHIP OF IT, CORROBORATING THAT ONLY BELIEVERS ARE IN VIEW

K) JESUS WAS AFFIRMING THAT THE KIND OF INDIVIDUALS IN VIEW IN VERSES 3-10 WERE THE KIND THAT HIS DISCIPLES WOULD BECOME IN A PROPHETIC STATEMENT RENDERED, "BLESSED ARE YOU WHEN MEN PERSECUTE YOU, AND SAY ALL MANNER OF EVIL AGAINST YOU FALSELY, FOR MY SAKE. REJOICE AND BE GLAD, FOR YOUR REWARD IN HEAVEN IS GREAT; FOR IN THE SAME WAY THEY PERSECUTED THE PROPHETS WHO WERE BEFORE YOU." SO JUST AS THE KIND OF INDIVIDUALS IN VERSES 3-10 WILL SUFFER PERSECUTION FOR THE SAKE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS - FOR THE SAKE OF CHRIST - BECAUSE THEY WERE CHARACTERISTICALLY PRESENTING AND REPRESENTING IN THEIR TEMPORAL LIVES THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD IN HIS PLAN OF PEACE BETWEEN GOD AND MAN THROUGH A MOMENT OF FAITH ALONE IN HIS SON JESUS CHRIST ALONE TO RESOLVE THE PROBLEM OF ENMITY / SIN BETWEEN GOD AND MAN ONE INDIVIDUAL AT A TIME; SO FOR THE SAME REASONS MEN WILL REPROACH AND PERSECUTE JESUS' DISCIPLES AND SAY ALL MANNER OF EVIL AGAINST THEM FALSELY - FOR HIS SAKE AND FOR THE SAKE OF HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS. ALL THOSE IN VIEW IN MT 5:1-12 SHOULD REJOICE, FOR THEIR REWARD IN HEAVEN IS GREAT; FOR IN THE SAME WAY THEY PERSECUTED THE PROPHETS WHO WERE BEFORE THEM - THEY TOO WILL RECEIVE GREAT ETERNAL REWARDS

II) [Mt 5:13-16]:

A) JESUS TOLD HIS DISCIPLES, "YOU ARE THE SALT OF THE EARTH," EVIDENTLY IN THE SENSE THAT THEY WERE ESSENTIAL, KEY, UNIQUELY SIGNIFICANT TO MANKIND RELATIVE TO THEIR GODLY MANDATE OF REPRESENTING AND PRESENTING THE GOSPEL AND THE DOCTRINES OF THE FAITH. JESUS WENT ON TO SAY, "BUT IF THE SALT LOSES ITS FLAVOR, HOW SHALL IT [THE EARTH / MANKIND] BE SEASONED?" IN THE SENSE THAT JUST AS SALT WAS ESSENTIAL AS SEASONING TO PROVIDE THE GREAT VALUE OF TASTE IN FOOD, SO THE DISCIPLES WERE ESSENTIAL AS SEASONING TO PROVIDE THE GREAT VALUE TO HUMANITY OF THE GOSPEL AND THE DOCTRINES OF THE FAITH. HE WENT ON TO INDICATE THAT JUST AS SALT WHICH HAS LOST ITS FLAVOR - EVIDENTLY BECAUSE IT SAT DORMANT WITHOUT BEING USED FOR A TIME, REFERRING TO DEAD SEA EVAPORATIVE SALT, IS GOOD FOR NOTHING, SO A DISCIPLE WHOSE LIFE DOES NOT CHARACTERISTICALLY REPRESENT AND PRESENT THE GOSPEL AND THE DOCTRINES OF THE FAITH TO MANKIND IS GOOD FOR NOTHING - TO BE CAST OUT OF HIS FELLOWSHIP WITH GOD, IN EFFECT TRAMPLING TO DESTRUCTION THE VALUE OF HIS TEMPORAL LIFE RELATIVE TO BLESSINGS AND ETERNAL REWARDS. JESUS WENT ON TO TELL HIS DISCIPLES IN A PROPHETIC SENSE WHICH IS APPLICABLE TO ALL BELIEVERS, THAT THEY ARE THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD IN THE SENSE OF ENLIGHTENING MANKIND RELATIVE TO THE GOSPEL AND THE DOCTRINES OF THE FAITH AND THAT THAT LIGHT SHOULD NOT BE HIDDEN ANY MORE THAN A CITY ON A HILL WOULD BE HIDDEN; NOR SHOULD ONE LIGHT A LAMP AND PUT IT UNDER A BASKET, BUT PUT IT ON A LAMPSTAND. THEN IT GIVES LIGHT TO ALL WHO ARE IN THE HOUSE. HE THEN SAID TO THEM, "LET YOUR LIGHT SO SHINE BEFORE MEN, THAT THEY MAY SEE YOUR GOOD WORKS AND GLORIFY YOUR FATHER IN HEAVEN."

III) [Mt 5:17-20]:

A) JESUS INDICATED THAT SOME MAINTAINED THROUGH A TWISTED VIEWPOINT OF SCRIPTURE THAT HE CAME TO ABOLISH THE LAW AND THE PROPHETS. HE REBUTTED EMPHATICALLY THAT BEFORE HEAVEN AND EARTH PASSED AWAY, (PROPHESYING A FUTURE NEW HEAVENS AND A NEW EARTH OVER WHICH HE WILL RULE FOREVER), HE WOULD FULFILL SCRIPTURE TO THE SMALLEST DETAIL. THIS WAS ESPECIALLY RELATIVE TO THE ATTAINMENT OF ETERNAL LIFE, WHICH WOULD BE FULFILLED NOT THROUGH THE EFFORTS OF INDIVIDUAL MEN BY KEEPING THE COMMANDMENTS FOR THEY HAD - ACCORDING TO SCRIPTURE - NO SUCH CAPACITY. THE PROPHETS FORETOLD OF A MESSIAH / SAVIOR WHO WILL PROVIDE GOD'S RIGHTEOUSNESS TO MEN THROUGH A MOMENT OF REPENTANCE / FAITH ALONE IN HIS SACRIFICE FOR SINS. THIS WAS JESUS' MESSAGE WHEN HE PROCLAIMED THE GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD AND PREACHED "REPENT FOR THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS AT HAND." JESUS FURTHER EXPLAINED THAT WHOEVER OF THOSE WHO WILL BE RESIDENTS IN THE ETERNAL KINGDOM OF HEAVEN WHO BREAK ONE OF THE LEAST OF THE COMMANDMENTS AND TEACH PEOPLE TO DO SO WILL BE CALLED THE LEAST IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN. ON THE OTHER HAND, WHOEVER IN THE ETERNAL KINGDOM OF HEAVEN WHO PRACTICES AND TEACHES THE COMMANDMENTS WILL BE CALLED GREAT IN THE KINGDOM. SO EVERY DETAIL OF EVERY COMMAND, OF EVERY UNGODLY THROUGHT, WORD AND DEED, NO MATTER HOW SMALL WILL BE REGULATED. CHAPTERS SIX AND SEVEN OF MATTHEW WILL DEAL WITH THE FULFILLMENT OF THE LAW AND THE PROPHETS IN THE TEMPORAL LIFE OF DISCIPLES AND ALL MEN

1) [Compare Mt 5:48]:

IV) [Mt 5:21-48]:

A) JESUS INDICATED THAT HE DID NOT COME TO ABOLISH THE LAW AND THE PROPHETS, OF WHICH HE WAS ACCUSED, BUT TO FULLFULL EVERY JOT AND TITTLE OF IT - TO THE SMALLEST POINT - BEFORE HEAVEN AND EARTH PASSED AWAY: (1) HE WOULD ESTABLISH THE LAW AS THE STANDARD BY WHICH HE WOULD RULE THE ETERNAL KINGDOM OF HEAVEN AS THE MESSIAH SAVIOR GOD ALMIGHTY EVERLASTING FATHER. (2) HE HAD ESTABLISHED IT AS THE STANDARD - THE STANDARD OF THE PERFECT RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD - TO ATTAIN ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN. SINCE THIS WAS IMPOSSIBLE WITH MAN, HE HAD REPEATEDLY STIPULATED IT WOULD BE FULLFILLED IN MAN THROUGH A MOMENT OF FAITH ALONE IN HIS ATONING SACRIFICE FOR SINS ALONE. (3) HE ESTABLISHED THE LAW AND THE PROPHETS AS THE STANDARD FOR DISCIPLES AND ALL MEN TO LIVE BY IN THEIR TEMPORAL LIVES WITH CONSEQUENCES OF TEMPORAL BLESSING AND DISCIPLINE

1) The Key Subject Throughout Mt 5:20-48 Is The Attainment Of The Righteousness Sufficient To Qualify One For Eternal Life In The Kingdom Of Heaven Or Be Condemned To The Fires Of The Eternal Fires Of Gehenna (Hell)

a) [Mt 5:20]:

b) [Mt 5:22]:

c) [Mt 5:29]:

d) [Mt 5:30]:

e) [Mt 5:43-45]:

f) [Mt 5:48]:

B) JESUS PROVIDED AN EXAMPLE OF WHAT WAS SAID BY FALSE TEACHERS OF ISRAELITE ANCESTORS: THEY TAUGHT THAT DISOBEYING THE COMMAND TO NOT COMMIT MURDER WOULD DISQUALIFY ONE FROM ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN, FALSELY IMPLYING THAT KEEPING COMMANDMENTS WAS THE MEANS BY WHICH ONE WOULD ATTAIN ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN. BUT THEIR TEACHING CONVEYED A LEVEL OF OBEDIENCE THAT FELL SHORT OF THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD, WITH A POINT OF VIEW OF COMMANDMENTS FROM SCRIPTURE THAT COMPROMISED THEIR MEANING IN ORDER TO MAKE IT ATTAINABLE BY MAN WITHOUT BEING AS PERFECT AS YOUR FATHER IN HEAVEN IS PERFECT. ON THE OTHER HAND, JESUS PROVIDED SEVERAL EXAMPLES OF WHAT IT TOOK TO ATTAIN ETERNAL LIFE. HE SAID THAT ONE WHO SOUGHT TO ATTAIN ETERNAL LIFE THROUGH KEEPING COMMANDS WHO UNJUSTIFIABLY CALLED ONE A DEROGATORY NAME MADE ONE LIABLE FOR ETERNAL JUDGMENT. FURTHERMORE, HE INDICATED THAT ONE MUST RESOLVE PROBLEMS SUCH AS ONE WHICH ONE HAS WITH ONE'S BROTHER BEFORE PRESENTING A GIFT TO THE LORD. FURTHER, ONE SHOULD BE QUICK TO AGREE WITH SOMEONE WHOM ONE OWES MONEY TO OR BE THROWN IN PRISON UNTIL DESTITUTE: EXAMPLES OF THE EXTENT AN INDIVIDUAL MUST GO TO ATTAIN ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN

C) JESUS PROVIDED A SECOND EXAMPLE OF WHAT WAS SAID BY FALSE TEACHERS OF ISRAELITE ANCESTORS: THEY TAUGHT THAT DISOBEYING THE COMMAND TO NOT COMMIT ADULTERY WOULD DISQUALIFY ONE FROM ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN, FALSELY IMPLYING THAT KEEPING COMMANDMENTS WAS THE MEANS BY WHICH ONE WOULD ATTAIN ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN. BUT THEIR TEACHING CONVEYED A LEVEL OF OBEDIENCE THAT FELL SHORT OF THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD, WITH A POINT OF VIEW OF COMMANDMENTS FROM SCRIPTURE THAT COMPROMISED THEIR MEANING IN ORDER TO MAKE IT ATTAINABLE BY MAN WITHOUT BEING AS PERFECT AS YOUR FATHER IN HEAVEN IS PERFECT. ON THE OTHER HAND, JESUS PROVIDED SEVERAL EXAMPLES OF WHAT IT TOOK TO ATTAIN ETERNAL LIFE, HE SAID THAT ONE WHO WAS SEEKING TO ATTAIN ETERNAL LIFE THROUGH KEEPING COMMANDS WHO LOOKS AT A WOMAN WITH LUST HAS ALREADY COMMITTED ADULTERY IN HIS HEART WHICH MAKES ONE LIABLE FOR ETERNAL JUDGMENT. HE CONCLUDED WITH AN IMPOSSIBLE HYPERBOLE, IF ONE'S RIGHT EYE CAUSES ONE TO SIN TO PLUCK IT OUT, OR CUT OFF AN OFFENDING RIGHT HAND, OR ANY MEMBER OF THE BODY SO AS NOT TO BE CAST INTO GEHENNA (HELL)

D) JESUS PROVIDED A THIRD EXAMPLE OF WHAT WAS SAID BY FALSE TEACHERS OF ISRAELITE ANCESTORS: THEY TAUGHT, "WHOEVER DIVORCES HIS WIFE, LET HIM GIVE HER A CERTIFICATE OF DIVORCE" OTHERWISE ONE WOULD BE DISQUALIFIED FROM ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN, FALSELY IMPLYING THAT KEEPING COMMANDMENTS WAS THE MEANS BY WHICH ONE WOULD ATTAIN ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN. BUT THEIR TEACHING CONVEYED A LEVEL OF OBEDIENCE THAT FELL SHORT OF THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD, WITH A POINT OF VIEW OF COMMANDMENTS FROM SCRIPTURE THAT COMPROMISED THEIR MEANING IN ORDER TO MAKE IT ATTAINABLE BY MAN WITHOUT BEING AS PERFECT AS YOUR FATHER IN HEAVEN IS PERFECT. ON THE OTHER HAND, JESUS SAID THAT ONE WHO WAS SEEKING TO ATTAIN ETERNAL LIFE THROUGH KEEPING COMMANDS WHO DIVORCES HIS WIFE FOR ANY REASON OTHER THAN SEXUAL IMMORALITY OR MARRIES A WOMAN WHO IS DIVORCED COMMITS ADULTERY AND IS LIABLE FOR ETERNAL CONDEMNATION

1) [Compare Dt 24:1-4]:

E) JESUS PROVIDED A FOURTH EXAMPLE OF WHAT WAS SAID BY FALSE TEACHERS OF ISRAELITE ANCESTORS ABOUT KEEPING OATHS SO AS NOT TO DISQUALIFY ONESELF FROM ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN; FALSELY IMPLYING THAT KEEPING COMMANDMENTS WAS THE MEANS BY WHICH ONE WOULD ATTAIN ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN. BUT THEIR TEACHING CONVEYED A LEVEL OF OBEDIENCE THAT FELL SHORT OF THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD, WITH A POINT OF VIEW OF COMMANDMENTS FROM SCRIPTURE THAT COMPROMISED THEIR MEANING IN ORDER TO MAKE IT ATTAINABLE BY MAN WITHOUT BEING AS PERFECT AS YOUR FATHER IN HEAVEN IS PERFECT. JESUS SAID THAT ONE WHO WAS SEEKING TO ATTAIN ETERNAL LIFE THROUGH KEEPING COMMANDS WHO TOOK OATHS SWEARING IN AN UNAUTHORIZED, ARROGANT, PRESUMPTIVE AND UNGODLY MANNER SUCH AS BY HEAVEN, BY GOD'S THRONE, BY THE EARTH, BY JERUSALEM, BY THE HAIRS ON ONE'S HEAD - NONE OF WHICH WAS UNDER ONE'S SOVEREIGNTY BUT GOD'S - WAS ACTING FROM THE DEVIL AND LIABLE TO ETERNAL CONDEMNATION

F) THE FIFTH EXAMPLE OF WHAT JESUS GAVE OF WHAT WAS SAID BY FALSE TEACHERS OF ISRAELITE ANCESTORS WAS ABOUT NOT VIOLATING THEIR INTERPRETATION OF THE LAW OF 'AN EYE FOR AN EYE AND A TOOTH FOR A TOOTH' SO AS NOT TO DISQUALIFY ONESELF FROM ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN, WHICH FALSELY IMPLIED THAT KEEPING COMMANDMENTS WAS THE MEANS BY WHICH ONE WOULD ATTAIN ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN. BUT THEIR TEACHING CONVEYED A LEVEL OF OBEDIENCE THAT FELL SHORT OF THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD, WITH A POINT OF VIEW OF COMMANDMENTS FROM SCRIPTURE THAT COMPROMISED THEIR MEANING IN ORDER TO MAKE THEM ATTAINABLE BY MAN WITHOUT BEING "AS PERFECT AS YOUR FATHER IN HEAVEN IS PERFECT." JUST AS JESUS IMPLIED THE IMPOSSIBILITY OF ATTAINING ETERNAL LIFE BY KEEPING COMMANDMENTS BY USING THE HYPERBOLE OF PLUCKING OUT AN EYE OR CUTTING OFF ONE'S RIGHT HAND OR ANY MEMBER OF THE BODY IF IT COMMITTED AN OFFENSE, SO AS NOT TO DISQUALIFY ONESELF FOR ETERNAL LIFE, (MT 5:29-30); SO JESUS STIPULATED FOUR CIRCUMSTANCES WHICH RELATED TO THE LAW OF "AN EYE FOR AN EYE" AND THE RESPONSE REQUIRED TO EACH CIRCUMSTANCE BY EVERY INDIVIDUAL WHO INSISTED UPON KEEPING COMMANDMENTS IN ORDER TO ATTAIN ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN. EACH RESPONSE WAS CHARACTERIZED AS COMPLETELY SELF-SACRIFICIAL TO THE POINT OF SELF-DESTRUCTION. ONE WHO CHOSE TO KEEP THE COMMANDMENTS UNTO ETERNAL LIFE MUST HAVE A PERFECT PATTERN IN ONE'S LIFE WHICH IS ILLUSTRATED BY (1) WHEN EVIL BEFALLS ONE BY BEING STRUCK ON THE RIGHT CHEEK, ONE MUST ALWAYS TURN THE OTHER CHEEK TO ENABLE YET ANOTHER EVIL TO BEFALL ONE; (2) IF ONE'S SHIRT IS UNLAWFULLY DEMANDED, TO ALWAYS GIVE ONE'S SHIRT AND ONE'S CLOAK; (3) IF ONE IS FORCED TO GO WITH ANOTHER A MILE, ALWAYS GO TWO MILES; (4) IF ANOTHER WITH EVIL INTENT ASKS OR WANTS TO BORROW ONE'S POSSESIONS, ALWAYS GIVE WHAT IS ASKED. THIS WOULD LEAVE ONE'S ENTIRE LIFE DEFENSELESS, VULNERABLE TO INJURY, DEATH AND DEPRIVATION - A PATTERN OF LIFE WHICH IS NOT ATTAINABLE BY ANY MORTAL, FLAWED, INDIVIDUAL; SO THEN NEITHER IS IT AN AVENUE TO PURSUE IN ORDER TO ATTAIN ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN.

1) [Compare Ex 21:22-27; cf Lev 24:20; Dt 19:21]:

G) JESUS PROVIDED A SIXTH EXAMPLE OF WHAT WAS SAID BY FALSE TEACHERS OF ISRAELITE ANCESTORS ABOUT LOVING ONE'S NEIGHBOR AND HATING ONE'S ENEMIES SO AS NOT TO DISQUALIFY ONESELF FROM ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN, FALSELY IMPLYING THAT KEEPING COMMANDMENTS WAS THE MEANS BY WHICH ONE WOULD ATTAIN ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN. BUT THEIR TEACHING CONVEYED A LEVEL OF OBEDIENCE THAT FELL SHORT OF THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD, WITH A POINT OF VIEW OF COMMANDMENTS FROM SCRIPTURE THAT COMPROMISED THEIR MEANING IN ORDER TO MAKE IT ATTAINABLE BY MAN WITHOUT BEING AS PERFECT AS YOUR FATHER IN HEAVEN IS PERFECT. JESUS DECLARED RELATIVE TO ONE WHO IS ATTEMPTING TO ATTAIN ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN, THAT THE GODLY RESPONSE WAS TO "LOVE [AGAPAO = A SELF-SACRIFICIAL GODLY LOVE FOR] YOUR ENEMIES, BLESS THOSE WHO CURSE YOU, DO GOOD TO THOSE WHO HATE YOU, AND PRAY FOR THOSE WHO SPITEFULLY USE YOU AND PERSECUTE YOU - AS GOD DOES, THAT YOU MAY BE SONS OF YOUR FATHER IN HEAVEN. IN OTHER WORDS, "YOU SHALL BE PERFECT, JUST AS YOUR FATHER IN HEAVEN IS PERFECT IN THE SENSE OF SINLESS."

CONTINUE TO MATTHEW CHAPTER 6