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Sermon on the Mount - Lesson 12 SS

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Slide 2 We will do a quick review of last week’s discussionMarriage statistics  - question about the marriage rate   
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Slide 4 The divorce rate in America for first, second or third marriage41-50% percent of first marriages60-67% of second 73-74% of third marriages end in divorce66 per cent of all divorced couples in America are childless   
Slide 5 Marriage rates:  America in 1977 was 19.8Table is based on number married per 1000 of total population.•When you violate God’s laws there is a consequence•We no longer have a commitment – we are a “me” generation and we raised a “me” generation.  Rick Warren’s key phrase in his book – The Purpose Driven Life – is “It ain’t about me!”•The consequence is:•Abortion, divorce, kids with one parent homes, rampant pursuit of alternative life styles – every society in history that embraced homosexuality has fallen    
Slide 6  •How are people to become Christian?  One way is they watch other Christians  - The Sermon on the Mount is all about Christian behavior – behavior that springs out of the Beatitudes.  The question is what do people see when they watch me? •We now launch into a discussion on honesty and integrity – of a man’s reputation.  •Before we get into that I want ot show a video clip – a message presented by S.M. Lockeridge  
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Slide 8 •We have seen the Pharisees liberal views on divorce now we see their honesty, or lack there of, exposed•Jesus is addressing a narrow and misleading legalism that required a specific oath to make spoken words binding. •The implication of such an approach to honesty is that we do not need to be truthful except under oath. •Jesus demands an integrity of speech as though everything were under oath. •Charles Ryrie : By the time of Christ, the Jews had developed an elaborate system of oath-taking, which often formed the basis of actual lying. •For example, one might swear that he had told the truth according to the dome of the Temple, while another might swear by the gold on the dome of the Temple! •In other words, there were stages or degrees of truth and thus also of falsehood within the system of taking oaths. •In our time this custom is found in phrases such as: “I swear by God,” “cross my heart and hope to die,” or “on my mother’s grave.” KJV Bible commentary. 1997, c1994 (1890). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.•Favorite Oaths:•I promise       I Swear it         Really!•As God is my witness       •I’d swear it on a stack of Bibles    
Slide 9 Matthew 5:33-3733 Again, ye have heard that it hath been said by them of old time, Thou shalt not forswear thyself, but shalt perform unto the Lord thine oaths: 34 But I say unto you, Swear not at all; neither by heaven; for it is God’s throne: 35 Nor by the earth; for it is his footstool: neither by Jerusalem; for it is the city of the great King.    
Slide 10 36 Neither shalt thou swear by thy head, because thou canst not make one hair white or black. 37 But let your communication be, Yea, yea; Nay, nay: for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil.   
Slide 11 •The matter of making oaths was next addressed by the Lord. •33 Again, ye have heard that it hath been said by them of old time, Thou shalt not forswear thyself, but shalt perform unto the Lord thine oaths:•There are many verses that deal with the taking of oaths but it is believed that this passage refers to four key verses:(Exodus 20:7, Lev. 19:12; Numbers 30:2;  Deut. 23:21) •Exo 20:7  Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain. •The law regarding oaths was based upon the third Commandment.   
Slide 12 33 Again, ye have heard that it hath been said by them of old time, Thou shalt not forswear thyself, but shalt perform unto the Lord thine oaths:•The matter of making oaths (Lev. 19:12; Deut. 23:21) was next addressed by the Lord. •Lev 19:12  And ye shall not swear by my name falsely, neither shalt thou profane the name of thy God: I am the LORD.   
Slide 13 33 Again, ye have heard that it hath been said by them of old time, Thou shalt not forswear thyself, but shalt perform unto the Lord thine oaths:Num 30:2  If a man vow a vow unto the LORD, or swear an oath to bind his soul with a bond; he shall not break his word, he shall do according to all that proceedeth out of his mouth. •False testimony resulted in severe consequences, since it consisted of taking God’s name in vain (Ex 20:7; Lev 19:11, 12; Num 30:2; Deut 19:16-20).   
Slide 14 33 Again, ye have heard that it hath been said by them of old time, Thou shalt not forswear thyself, but shalt perform unto the Lord thine oaths:Deu 23:21  When thou shalt vow a vow unto the LORD thy God, thou shalt not slack to pay it: for the LORD thy God will surely require it of thee; and it would be sin in thee.  •Even a superficial reading of these 4 passages plainly show their intention – they prohibit false swearing or perjury!  
Slide 15 33 Again, ye have heard that it hath been said by them of old time, Thou shalt not forswear thyself, but shalt perform unto the Lord thine oaths:•The rabbis taught that oaths which omitted God’s name could be broken and were not binding – they argued that since God Himself had not been involved, their oaths were not binding•To swear by God’s Name meant that He was your witness that you were telling the truth. The Jews sought to avoid the impropriety of swearing falsely by God’s Name by substituting heaven, earth, Jerusalem, or their head as that by which they swore •Jesus maintains that God is involved in heaven, earth, Jerusalem, and all things. Hence, all oaths are binding, and any attempt to avoid an oath while pretending to keep it profanes the name of God – to teach anything else was sheer hypocrisy!•The reference is neither to taking oaths in court nor to profanity.•The Pharisees were notorious for their oaths, which were made on the least provocation. Yet they made allowances for mental reservations within their oaths. If they wanted to be relieved of oaths they had made by heaven… by the earth… by Jerusalem, or by one’s own head, they could argue that since God Himself had not been involved their oaths were not binding.•Forswear = perjure – lying under oathJesus declares “But I say unto you, Swear not at all…”• Jesus said oaths should not even be  necessary: Do not swear at all. •The fact that oaths were used at all emphasized the wickedness of man’s heart. Furthermore, swearing “by heaven,” “by the earth,” or “by Jerusalem” is binding, since they are God’s throne… footstool, and city, respectively. Even the color of the hair on their heads was determined by God (Matt. 5:36). However, Jesus later in His life responded to an oath (26:63-64), as did Paul (2 Cor. 1:23). •In Matthew 23, often referred to as the “woes” chapter we see an expanded teaching on the topic of oathes and false teaching.  
Slide 16 Matthew 23:16-2316  Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor! 17  Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold? 18  And, Whosoever shall swear by the altar, it is nothing; but whosoever sweareth by the gift that is upon it, he is guilty. 19  Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gift, or the altar that sanctifieth the gift?    
Slide 17 20  Whoso therefore shall swear by the altar, sweareth by it, and by all things thereon. 21  And whoso shall swear by the temple, sweareth by it, and by him that dwelleth therein. 22  And he that shall swear by heaven, sweareth by the throne of God, and by him that sitteth thereon. 23  Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.  Jesus criticizes and condemns their wrong behavior and instructs them what would have been better: judgment, mercy, and faith  
Slide 18 34 But I say unto you, Swear not at all; neither by heaven; for it is God’s throne: 35 Nor by the earth; for it is his footstool: neither by Jerusalem; for it is the city of the great King. 36 Neither shalt thou swear by thy head, because thou canst not make one hair white or black.  Jesus declared that All such oath-taking,, was unnecessary if one were normally in the habit of telling the truth.  Matthew 5:37 But let your communication be, Yea, yea; Nay, nay: for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil•The Lord was saying one’s life should be sufficient to back up one’s words. A yes always ought to mean yes, and a no should mean no. James seems to have picked up these words of the Lord in his epistle.•James 5:12 But above all things, my brethren, swear not, neither by heaven, neither by the earth, neither by any other oath: but let your yea be yea; and your nay, nay; lest ye fall into condemnation. •Complete honesty should be typical of the Believer •No oath is necessary to guarantee trustworthiness for one’s “yes” or “no.”•When we add an oath to our regular affirmation of the truth, we either admit that our normal conversation cannot be trusted, or that we are lowering ourselves to the level of a world which normally does not tell the truth.     
Slide 19 •WE CAN’T FORGET THAT THE BEATITUDESE HAVE TO BE OUR ATTITUDES AND IF THEY ARE WE ARE LIVING WHAT JESUS IS TEACHING •The first four Beatitudes reveal spiritual progress – each step leads to the next and presupposes the one that has gone before.•To be poor in spirit we acknowledge our complete and utter spiritual bankruptcy before God•Next we mourn over the cause of it – our sins, the corruption of man and his fallen nature and the control sin and death has over this world•We are to be meek, humble, and gentle toward others allowing our spiritual poverty to condition our behavior to them as well as to God•We are to hunger and thirst for righteousness – what good does it to confess if we don’t hunger – we replace our sin with a desire for righteousness•Next we turn from our attitude toward God to our attitude toward others•Merciful – Pure in heart – peacemakers•We will be reviled and persecuted and we are to rejoice and be exceeding glad!•These are character traits  - we don’t act like Christians – we are Christians and our actions are an outcome of that.We are not meant to control our Christianity – our Christianity is meant to control us. 
Slide 20  Oswald Chambers:            “Jesus Christ by His Spirit alters our standard of honor, and as His true disciples we will never care what people say of us but will care tremendously what people say of Jesus Christ; we realize that our Lord’s honor, not our own honor, is at stake in our lives.  What is the thing that rouses you?  That is an indication of where you live.”   
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