This weekend in worship, we’ll focus on a few more verses from the Sermon on the Mount: Matthew 5:21-24. It’s another scripture that focuses on our relationships. And specifically these verses focus on our relationships with those closest to us.
We often talk about the importance of relating to someone we don’t know with respect We talk about being thoughtful as we relate to those whose backgrounds and lives are different than ours. We recognize that all of these relationships can be complicated and difficult.
So with the people we love the most, shouldn’t it be easier? And yet research shows that it’s those we are closest to that we have the most conflict with. Not surprising in some ways – when you spend a lot of time with someone and when you invest a lot in someone, then not only will the love be greater, but so can the hurt.
So what does the Bible say about how we get along with those we are closest to? In these verses, Jesus approaches this topic from a different angle. He weaves together our relationships and our offerings. This is so important that our offerings have to wait . . . until we get things squared away with those we love. Our offerings and our relationships are connected? Apparently so.
I’ll offer some reflections on this in worship. Look forward to seeing you
29 Let no evil talk come out of your mouths, but only what is useful for building up, as there is need, so that your words may give grace to those who hear. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with which you were marked with a seal for the day of redemption. 31 Put away from you all bitterness and wrath and anger and wrangling and slander, together with all malice, 32 and be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you.