August 23, 2009

A new subject or passage each week for all to discuss.
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August 23, 2009

Post by millipede » Sun Aug 23, 2009 7:52 pm

Matthew 22:36-40
36 Master, which is the great commandment in the law?
37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
38 This is the first and great commandment.
39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

Exodus 20:16
Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.

I've been going through the ten commandments from the old testament and discussing how the passage from Matthew can cover them all. One thing I'm not sure I've mentioned yet or not is verse 40 from the passage in Matthew. All the law and the prophets hang on those two commandments. That verse there basically backs up the point I'm trying to make comparing the new testament and old testament laws.
This week we're looking at the 9th of the 10 commandments.
Each week I do some searching to aid in my posting. As with many other bible passages I might look up, I have found different opinions on this particular commandment. Some questions that were raised include; what does it mean to bear false witness? and, who is thy neighbor? I'm going to try to stick to the basic and most important facts while looking over this one.

Some might argue that in the old testament times this commandment had more to do with a court of law than anything else. In today's court it is illegal to lie. For some, that is their interpretation of what it would mean to bear false witness. Others expand that to include ALL lying. I can't read and translate the original language this was written in, and I was not there on the mountain with Moses and God. So, I cannot personally give a definite answer to such questions. What I can do is promise you that lying in general is a bad thing. And, the new testament commandments spoken by Jesus should cover all lying or any interpretation of bearing false witness. I'll expand on that in a moment.
First, just in case anyone is wondering, I'll share my thoughts on who your neighbor is. Some people asked Jesus that once and he explained it quite clearly. He told a story about a "good Samaritan". If you lived in such times you wouldn't think of a Samaritan as good. Picture someone on the other side of town, nowhere near your neighborhood, that is into trouble. Gangs or drugs or who knows what else. Just picture someone you don't think of as "good". And this person was the one who took the time to help someone in need. After telling the whole story Jesus asked the man a question...
Luke 10:36,37
36 "Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?"
37 The expert in the law replied, "The one who had mercy on him."
Jesus told him, "Go and do likewise."

I think it is pretty clear that the term "neighbor" can be expanded to include all people. In all honesty, in God's eyes, are there people out there that deserve to be treated better than others? Regardless of how you want to interpret the old testament commandment, Jesus spells it out clearly that we are to love all people as ourselves.
Now looking at the commandment with the idea that your neighbor is anyone you come across, we'll take a look at how the passage in Matthew relates to it.
The commandment in Exodus tells us not to bear false witness against our neighbor. Personally, I am looking at the phrase "bear false witness" to cover any lies you might tell about someone. That could very well include lying about something in court, or telling someone you know that someone else did something they didn't do. However you choose to look at it, speaking falsely about someone usually hurts someone.
When it comes to loving your neighbor as yourself it's pretty simple to see how the passage in Matthew covers this commandment... We sure wouldn't be happy to find out that someone was telling people that we did something bad when we didn't actually do that. There's lots of ways that people treat each other poorly like that.
I don't know about anyone reading this, but I know I've had people speak falsely against me. I think most people have at one time or another in their life. And I can say it sure doesn't feel good. It can hurt someone's reputation, it can tear apart relationships, it can do all sorts of harm. There's a few verses in the bible that talk about being careful with your words and how powerful the tongue is.

It should also be fairly easy to see how this commandment is covered by the first that Jesus spoke, about loving God with all your heart, soul, and mind. As I mentioned in previous weeks, God loves us all so much that He says whatever we do to the least of these we do unto Him. Things we do to other people that hurt other people, also hurt God. No matter how good or bad a person is, no matter how you personally feel about someone, EVERYONE is precious in God's eyes. When Jesus died on the cross He died for ALL people. That is how precious each and every person is. God loves us ALL. So why would we want to hurt something that He created and cares so much about?

A lot of these commandments might seem simple, but in some way I think most of us end up breaking them at one point or another. This particular one happens a lot I believe. It's pretty easy to join in a conversation where someone is spreading rumors about someone. And that is just one example about how a person could bear false witness against someone else. I think we need to watch our thoughts and actions a lot more carefully than we do sometimes.

Dear God, I thank you for today. Thank you for the warm sunshine. Thank you for my precious family. Thank you for all the blessings you have in store for me. Thank you for your word and instruction that guides me through life.
I pray that we would all lift each other up in love. I pray that we would learn to completely love each other just as we love ourselves and as you want us to love each other. I pray that we would be more careful with our thoughts, our words, and our actions. I pray for anyone that has been hurt by rumors and lies. I pray for anyone involved in such things. I pray that anyone that has been hurt can offer forgiveness and I pray that all that have spoken falsely about someone might see the error of their ways and seek forgiveness. Thank you for offering us forgiveness and a second chance.

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Re: August 23, 2009

Post by timothy78 » Sun Aug 30, 2009 1:48 pm

Millipede thought there would be a weekly study? I am totally :? :!:

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Re: August 23, 2009

Post by millipede » Sun Aug 30, 2009 1:55 pm

I'm working on it right now. Most weeks I work on it after I get home from church.

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Re: August 23, 2009

Post by Sumer009 » Wed Mar 11, 2015 1:57 pm


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