The American Wisdom Series

Presents
The Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5, 6 & 7): the Beatitudes Mat. 5:3-12

The Book of Matthew presents Jesus Christ as Yahveh's King and to that end we saw  earlier where Christ began to teach and proclaim the GOOD NEWS of the kingdom, which is the King and His Dominion, all around Galilee and heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people. It is written that as a result, His fame went throughout all Syria and they brought unto Him all sick people... and He healed them (Mat. 4:24). Therefore, great multitudes of people from Galilee, and from the ten-city area, and from Jerusalem, etc., followed Him (Mat. 4:25).

Why do you suppose the multitudes followed Christ? Was it because they hungered and thirsted after the wisdom and knowledge which comes from "hearing" the Word of God or was it because of the miracles and healings He performed? Think about it, for since there is nothing new under the sun, one has only to liken the "multitudes" who followed Christ back then to the "mainstream" or the majority of the followers of Christianity today and observe how seriously Biblically challenged (illiterate) our people are to know the answer.

Now Christ is going to teach us the characteristic makeup of the true servants of God who are the children of Light and who joyfully and happily follow after that Light which is Jesus Christ. These eight characteristics are called the Beatitudes which are in direct contrast to the eight Woes of the hypocritical children of darkness found in the 23rd chapter of Matthew. In fact, there is an appendix (126) in the back of the "Companion Bible", Kregel Publishers, which compares the Beatitudes to the Woes. Below is the table found in that appendix.

 
"THE BEATITUDES" (5:3-12) "THE WOES" (23:13-33)
1.  The kingdom opened to the poor (v. 3) 1.  The kingdom shut (v. 13)
2.  Comfort for mourners (v. 4) 2.  Mourners distressed (v. 14)
3.  The meek inheriting the earth (v. 5) 3.  Fanatics compassing the earth (v. 15)
4.  True righteousness sought by true desire (v. 6) 4.  False righteousness sought by casuistry (vv. 16-22)
5.  The merciful obtaining mercy (v. 7) 5.  Mercy "omitted" and "left undone" (vv. 23, 24)
6.  Purity within, and the vision of God hereafter (v. 8) 6.  Purity without, uncleanness within. "Blindness" (vv. 25, 26)
7.  Peacemakers, the sons of God (v. 9) 7.  Hypocrites, and lawless (vv. 27, 28)
8.  The persecuted (vv. 10-12) 8.  The persecutors (vv. 29-33)

Let us now open our eyes and ears and observe what happens when Christ goes on high (up into a mountain) and sets Himself ready to teach.

Matthew 5:1
And seeing the multitudes, He went up into a mountain: and when He was set, His disciples came unto Him:
Here we see that only His disciples came to Him for they also went up into the mountain to seek after Him to receive the deeper truths (meat) from the Word of God. The multitudes rarely if ever take the time to go to Him privately, to His Word, to sincerely gain the rich wisdom and deeper understandings which He "speaks" to those who seek to know Him. We will address this subject of the "multitudes" in greater detail when we get to the 13th chapter and discover why it is that Christ always spoke to them in parables.
Matthew 13:34-35
All these things spake Jesus unto the multitude in parables; and without a parable spake he not unto them:
It is commonly taught that Christ spoke in parables to make things clearer, which is true concerning His disciples, but not true when it comes to the "multitudes". Again, we will address this subject at a later time when we will also learn about the love Christ has for the multitudes who simply do not have eyes to see nor ears to hear. However, the point we are making here is that it is His true disciples who always "come unto Him" seeking wisdom and understanding from the Word of God.

Furthermore, the very word "disciple" means "a learner" which is a pupil or student, i.e. one who is schooled or "disciplined" in the Word of God. Ask yourself: Are you a student of His Word or do you follow the multitudes, the majority, who are followers of men's traditions? Are you one who goes regularly to church every Sunday but don't take the time to read the Bible during the week.

In other words, do you study His Word, rightly dividing the word of truth (2 Tim. 2:15), or do you just go to church and get involved in goodly works instead of the "wonderful works of God" He has ordained for this final generation in the pouring out of His Spirit upon all flesh?

Let us continue now where Christ has now gone up into the mountain to teach His disciples, who have also gone up unto the mountain (Mat. 5:1) to hear His voice!

Matthew 5:2
And He opened his mouth, and taught them, saying,
All wisdom comes from His mouth, from His Word, wherein is contained knowledge and understanding which He freely gives to those who will come and take it.
Proverbs 2:6
For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding.
Jesus Christ works through His servants and so it shall be in this final generation from His mouth to the ears of His disciples and then through their mouths that the "gospel of the kingdom shall be preached [proclaimed] in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come (Matthew 24:14)." You "see", it is His Word, the words from His mouth, that is to be spoken... not the traditions of men. Proverbs 2:6 is not only addressing the red letter words in the New Testament here; it refers to all Holy Spirit given scripture - THE WHOLE BIBLE!
Deut. 32:1
Give ear, O ye heavens, and I will speak; and hear, O earth, the words of my mouth.
His servants, His disciples, His watchmen, listen to His voice, which is His Word, and do speak His words after the manner of "Thus saith the Lord" and "It is written" (Ezek. 3:1-14)
Matthew 5:3
Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
The word "blessed" used in these Beatitudes means "supremely happy" or "exceedingly joyful", and it is those who are "poor in spirit", those who humbly yield their own spirit to His Spirit and recognize His supreme authority, that are blessed with such joy and happiness! You see, God's elect do not seek the riches of this world to find happiness nor do they follow after the spirits of this world but rather seek to be fed the wisdom and knowledge and understanding from the true Bread of Life.

It is also the "poor in spirit" who shall allow His Spirit to speak through them at the time of the delivering up to be a witness unto the nations in proclaiming the good news of the gospel of the kingdom to the nations of the world. Matthew 10:19-20 "But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak. [20] For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you." They are truly blessed and spiritually rich indeed (see Rev. 2:9).

And so it is that these Beatitudes are the richness and spiritual strengths, qualities, and characteristics of the inheritors of the kingdom of God. They shall be blessed and happy indeed for "theirs is the kingdom" and they shall be part of the first resurrection, the raising to the status of eternal life at the return of Yeshua Messiah.

[4] Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.
How is it that those who mourn can be exceedingly happy? Well first of all, the mourning spoken of here is not the "poor me baby" stuff of this world that we hear so often today! God's elect are not "cry babies" but rather loving, compassionate servants and handmaidens who cry aloud and lament the injustice and unrighteousness brought upon their brothers and sisters by the children of darkness, the sons of Cain (kenites), through their control and manipulation of the four hidden dynasties. See pamphlet #1848, & #1011 or #1012 to learn more about the four hidden dynasties. It is a sad, mournful state of affairs indeed, but the exceeding happiness and peace of mind comes by knowing and understanding God's plan, that the day of vengeance of our God is soon coming and justice shall be executed in all the earth.That day of vengeance is the return of Yeshua Messiah and the execution of His just recompense which shall bring comfort to all those who mourn.

We can read of that "comfort to all that mourn" in Isaiah 61 which prophecies of both the first and second advents of our Lord.

Isaiah 61:2-3
To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn;
The first half of verse 2 speaks of Christ's first advent and is the point at which Christ stopped reading in Luke 4 when He stood up in the temple and read from the scroll of Isaiah. The reason He stopped reading was because the second half of verse 2 declares His second advent and the day of vengeance of our God, when all that mourn shall be comforted. God's elect know that day is soon coming and so they have that joy and peace of mind now, knowing that God is in complete control and that His Word shall come to pass exactly as it is written. Isaiah also declares the "blessings", the exceeding joy and happiness that the mourners have.
[3] To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.
Those who have eyes to see and ears to hear also know that the two witnesses, the two olive trees, also lament and decry the injustice while giving witness and teaching the Words of His mouth in proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom of God.
Rev. 11:3
And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth.
To be "clothed in sackcloth" is to be spiritually clothed in the garment of prophets, like Elijah, who called people to repentance as he lamented and preached against the intermarrying of the angelic sons of God with the daughters of Adam.
Matthew 5:5
Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
The meek are those who are humble before God who allow the Word of God to guide them and lead them in judgment and in the paths of righteousness, i.e. to do that which is right.
Psalm 25:9
The meek will he guide in judgment: and the meek will He teach His way.
They know they shall inherit the earth and even rule as kings and priests with the Prince of Peace, the King of kings, whose ways alone bring in the abundance of peace! Rev. 5:10 "And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth."
Psalm 37:11
But the meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace.
Are you beginning to see how it is that God's servants are exceedingly happy even now? All these things are written and they shall come to pass exactly as they are written... and that is comforting indeed!
[6] Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
We learned earlier that the multitudes do not have this "hunger and thirst" which is an expression meaning a strong yearning or sincere desire to be fed to the full (choratzo in Greek) from His lush green pastures. In other words, they do not sincerely seek wisdom and knowledge and understanding from the Word of God wherein is contained His righteousness. Their preachers and pastors have them believing that church is where it is at... but such is not the case.

Only the Word of God can give life and quench that hunger and thirst.

John 6:35
And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.
Jesus Christ said in Mat. 24, Mark 13, and Luke 21, that there would be famine in the last days, the days just prior to His return. Amos tells us exactly what that famine is. Amos 8:11-12 "Behold, the days come, saith the Lord GOD, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD: [12] And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the LORD, and shall not find it."
However, even during the midst of that great famine, you can be fed to the full each and every day if you will be humble before God and allow Him to lead you to His lush green pastures (Ps. 23).
[7] Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
God's elect are the most merciful and compassionate people on earth because they have Jesus Christ, the Word of God, in them and are thus filled with His Spirit. They know our Father's plan of salvation and the love and compassion and forgiveness He has for those who are deceived and "know not what they do". Therefore God's elect can be merciful to others even in the face of death, as was Stephen whose name fittingly means a "crown of royalty".
Acts 7:59-60
And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.

[60] And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.

What an example of compassion and forgiveness.
[8] Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
To be "pure in heart" is to have a pure mind, one which has been cleansed with the purity of His Word. Only they shall have the "eyes to see" God.
[9] Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
This is not a statement declaring that God's servants are pacifists as is so often inferred by the unknowledgeable who think that if you will just be sugar-sweet and nice to the enemy he will be nice to you! Get real! The history of our nation alone is proof positive that peace is costly, that it comes with a price which is often the lives of our sons and daughters and brothers and sisters who are willing to take a stand against the onslaught of the enemy and defend our peace and liberties.

You "see", true and lasting peace can only be achieved by following God's ways, the ways of the Prince of Peace, which produce freedom and peace and happiness. To that end, God's servants are not only willing to put on the whole gospel armor of God (Eph. 6) and take a stand against the fiery darts of the enemy, but they boldly teach His truth as it is written without fear of the enemy or what man might do or say. And haven't you read how the Prince of Peace, the King of kings and His saints, usher in the kingdom of God whereby peace shall abound upon the earth?

Rev. 19:14
And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.

[15] And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it He should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.

[16] And He hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.

So you see, if you are a peacemaker who teaches the truth of His Word, the way to freedom and peace and happiness, you will find yourself engaged in a great spiritual battle and therefore you can expect to be persecuted by those who seek to make captive our people and make merchandise out of them. Christ told us flat out that if we serve Him we can expect persecution: John 15:20 "Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also."
[10] Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
God's elect are blessed indeed and exceedingly happy in knowing that we have the victory in Him and the kingdom of heaven is ours. Yes, when we do and teach His truth we fully expect to be persecuted but we are not afraid of man and his ways of terror and intimidation. You "see", Christ has given us "power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt us [you] (Luke 10:19)." So... happy we are that our names are written in the Book of Life (Luke 10:20)!
1 Peter 3:14
But and if ye suffer for righteousness' sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled;
Not only are God's elect persecuted for doing that which is right, but they are also reviled and persecuted and falsely accused of doing things and saying things which they have not done or said, just because they are Christians.
Matthew 5:11
Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
No problem, His elect can handle it and in doing so give glory to God at the same time!
1 Peter 4:14
If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part He is evil spoken of, but on your part He is glorified.
Happy ye are, so rejoice and be blessed (exceeding glad)!
Matthew 5:12
Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
Who was it that persecuted and even killed the prophets? It was the children of darkness who shall receive "woes" instead of His "blessings". Here is what Christ said to the kenites in Matthew 23:31 "Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets."

Why is it that the servants of God are so persecuted and reviled? It is because they are "salty" when they teach and they do not withhold the truth of God's Word. Just like Jesus Christ, they tell it like it is concerning those who persecuted the prophets and they do so boldly and without fear of what men might do to them. You "see", they would rather please their heavenly Father by keeping His commands and doing His will, rather than please men just to avoid rejection or reviling or persecution.

[13] Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.
Salt which has been left to the "elements" and has become bland and tasteless, i.e. has lost its saltiness, is good for nothing except to be walked all over like so many sugar-sweet Christians are today! So the question is: "Of what value is a people-pleasing Christian who will not teach God's Word boldly as it is written?" Do not sugarcoat God's Word as do the workers of iniquity! Sprinkle the salt my friend and preserve the spiritual "meat" of His Word.
[14] Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.
[15] Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.
It is growing darker and darker outside as the smoke from the pit (Rev. 9:2) continues to darken the spiritual atmosphere in these last days! The only light that remains is the truth of God's Word which is carried forth by His servants through the final hour of darkness. Are you part of that Light?

If you are, then Jesus Christ gives you the following instruction:

[16] Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
Let your light, that Light of Truth which is in you, "radiate brilliancy" (Strong's #2989) before men that they may see your good works. What are those "good works"? Are people supposed to see what a goody, goody two-shoes you have become? No... the good works are the "wonderful works of God" that the sons and daughters (Acts 2:16-18) shall carry out in the final generation according to that which is written.You "see", when our brother's and sister's and loved one's eyes are open to His truth and they learn the rich heritage of His people (true Israel - Do you know where true Israel is to be found? (Open pamphlets #1020 and #1064 to find out! ) and they "see" that His Word has come to pass exactly as it is written, then they shall also become filled with unspeakable joy and glorify your Father which is in heaven. What an humbling honor and a joyous privilege it is to be part of that marvelous work!

Jesus Christ declared the good works that the sons and daughters (seed) would do in this final generation, even while He was yet hanging on the cross still teaching the entirety 22nd Psalm:

Psalm 22:30-31
A seed shall serve Him; it shall be accounted to the Lord for a generation.

[31] They shall come, and shall declare his righteousness unto a people that shall be born, that he hath done this.

God shall pour out His Spirit upon His servants and handmaidens and they shall prophesy, which is to teach with all the qualities of love and humility before God as set forth in the Beatitudes we learned today. In other words, God shall use them to bring forth the light of His truth and the latter day rain from heaven in that "through their mouths", being filled with His Spirit, they shall teach the Word of God and declare His righteousness, not their own. You see, it is His marvelous works they do, not their own, and they give glory to God for those marvelous works He does.

Here are the overcomers singing the Song of Moses at the victory celebration over the beast:

Rev. 15:3
And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints.
The Song of Moses is the 32nd chapter of Deuteronomy which outlines the Plan of God, His wonderful and marvelous works in the final generation of the fig tree when the final proclamation of the name (the authority of) the LORD goes forth.
Deut. 32:3-4
Because I will publish [proclaim] the name of the LORD: ascribe ye greatness unto our God.

[4] He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all His ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is He.

Question: What more "exceeding happiness" could one possibly have than to be a child of the living God and serve Him in these last days?

Answer: None! So thank you Father!

Jesus Christ left the multitudes behind and  is up in a mountain teaching His disciples who likewise "went up into the mount"with open ears to hear the Word of God from on high! The first thing Christ showed His disciples was the "humble before God" and "compassionate to others" qualities of the children of light, the salt of the earth (see Mat. 22:37-39).

To wit, His disciples are now the sons and daughters in this final generation of the fig tree of whom it was prophesied would see (as in understand) the visions of the prophets (Act. 2) and teach God's Word to their brothers and sisters of the true House of Israel! We noted that the "Beatitudes" ("Beautiful Attitudes" I like to call them) of those children of light are in direct contrast to the "Woes" of the hypocritical scribes and Pharisees that we shall cover in detail in the 23rd chapter of Matthew. However, to fully understand the depth of the teaching Christ is now giving on the mount, one should be familiar with the MO (Methods of Operation) of the scribes and Pharisees. A word to the wise is sufficient.

As we begin keep in mind that Christ is STILL teaching His disciples! In other words, He is not addressing the multitudes which He left when He went up into the mountain. Again, it was only His disciples who went up into the mountain where He was "set" to teach those who would hear His voice with open ears and take heed to His words of instruction! So having covered the characteristic qualities of His elect, Christ is now going to address their works, i.e. what they DO and what they TEACH. And like the Beatitudes, this will be in direct contrast to what the scribes and Pharisees DO and TEACH!

Christ begins:  Matthew 5:17  Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.

This verse speaks directly to those who teach that the Old Testament is passÚ and not applicable anymore! Many so-called Christian preachers and pastors even teach that the laws of God themselves are no longer in effect. That is primarily due to the fact that they do not know the difference between a law, a statute, and an ordinance. You see, the natural laws of God which govern the physical universe, e.g. gravity and inertia, and the natural laws which govern human behavior, e.g. thou shalt do no murder, are still in effect. The statutes and ordinances governing sacrifices and rituals, etc., are of an entirely different nature. The main point is, it is still NOT OK to jump off a high cliff (because you will pay the price according to God's law of gravity) and it is still NOT OK to murder someone (because you will pay the price according to the law of murder, whether man righteously executes the commanded judgment or not) and it is still just as abominable to eat pork or any other thing God told us not to eat in Leviticus chapter 11 & Deuteronomy 14:3-21.


Editors note: There are two qualifiers as to what animals we should eat: Genesis 9:3  Every moving thing that liveth shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things.
4  But flesh with the life thereof, which is the blood thereof, shall ye not eat.

#1.It must be properly butchered! (verse 4) (But flesh with the life thereof, which is the blood thereof, shall ye not eat.)
and
#2.Same rule as applies to the green herb; it must not be harmful to you. even  as the green herb have I given you all things)(verse 3)

"Even as the green herb"means their are meats we should not eat, just as we would not eat poison ivy.I believe He explained that to us in Leviticus chapter 11 and Deuteronomy 14:3-21 and it is still true today. See pamphlet #4027



Jesus Christ now emphasizes that the law is still in effect by stating that not even the least little letter (jot) nor the least little ornament (tittle) above a letter shall pass from that law, till all be fulfilled.
[18] For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.
The "jot", or "yod" in Hebrew, is the smallest of the Hebrews letters (y) and is used 66,420 times in the manuscripts according the numbering of the Massorites. It is interesting to note that the "jot" is the 10th letter of the Hebrew alphabet and corresponds to "iota" which is the 8th letter in Greek alphabet. In Biblical numerics, 10 denotes "law" and "ordinal perfection", which is "another new first: after the ninth digit, when numeration commences anew" (see Companion Bible, appendix 10). The number "8" denotes resurrection, regeneration; a new beginning or commencement.And so it is that Jesus Christ is about to regenerate the law to a new level of spiritual understanding to those who love and serve Him and teach others the truth of His Word.
[19] Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
What you do and what you teach are paramount to bearing fruit for the kingdom of God. Remember, if you are a disciple of Christ, a student of the Word of God, then you are the salt of the earth and you are to let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your Father which is in heaven. Woe unto those who do and teach according to the traditions of men and cause our people to stumble and fall to their spiritual death and to commit spiritual adultery, which is idolatry, and to make their wedding vows (oath) to the false messiah! When we cover the "woes" in the 23rd chapter of Matthew we will see that these are EXACTLY the things that the scribes and Pharisees do. If you, as part of His royal priesthood (1 Pet. 2:9), follow after their ways and lead God's children away from the truth of His Word, you'll never make it into the kingdom of heaven! Take heed!
[20] For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.
We will find in the "woes" to the scribes and the Pharisees in Mat. 23 that they are a bunch of self-serving, self-righteous religious hypocrites who sit in the seat of Moses. In other words, they sit in the authority of the temple (church) as the spiritual leaders of God's people, as ministers of righteousness, but their works are iniquitous indeed! Take special heed to their example, because that is what Christ is addressing in the rest of this chapter, i.e. what you DO and what you TEACH your brothers and sisters as a servant of the living God!

Those who have understanding know that it is written in Mat. 24, Mark 13, and Luke 21 concerning this final generation of the fig tree, that MANY would come in the name of Christ, claiming to represent Him as Christian ministers and preachers, etc., and would deceive MANY. (Matthew 24:4-5 "And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. [5] For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.") If Christ's words be true, and they are, and we are in that final generation,and we are, then the fact is that there NOW ARE MANY false ministers and preachers of Christ in these last days (even the majority) claiming to be "ministers of righteousness"... but you know what? Their righteousness does not exceed that of the scribes and Pharisees because their teachings are so leavened with the doctrine of the scribes and the Pharisees that the "Jesus" they teach is not the real Jesus Christ at all, but another "Jesus", the Instead-of-Jesus, Satan!

2 Cor. 11:4
For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.
So make certain that you do as John instructs in 1 Jn. 4:1 and try the spirits (doctrines and other gospels), i.e. test them with the Word of God before you pass them along to your brothers and sisters. Otherwise, what you do and teach may be furthering Satan's work in causing our people to commit spiritual adultery resulting in their spiritual death!
2 Cor. 11:13-15
 For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.

[14] And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.

[15] Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.

Christ is now going to explain to His disciples, those who are the salt of the earth and the light of this world, the spiritual application of the law as it applies to what they DO and what they TEACH. He begins with the following three Commandments, the first of which we shall examine in detail in this study:
1. The Law of Murder
2. The Law of Adultery
3. The Law of Perjury (False Oath)
Now we already read that Christ said do not even think for one moment that the Law is done away with. In other words, it is STILL AGAINST GOD'S LAW to murder or commit adultery or swear a false oath, etc. Those laws have not changed one iota!

However, the greater sin involves the souls of our brothers and sisters and their eternal salvation which you do AFFECT as a trustee and teacher of God's Word, i.e. as a Christian. You see, it is one thing to murder someone, which is to commit premeditated homicide, for then one must stand trial and upon conviction be sentenced to death according to the law! It is yet another thing to spiritually murder your brother for then one must also face judgment, at the Supreme Court level, and upon conviction also be sentenced to death, which is the eternal death of the soul in the lake of fire.

Christ explains this to us:

[21] Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment:
The Greek word for "kill" is "phoneuo" which means intentional, premeditated murder, i.e. criminal homicide!
kill = phoneuo, fon-yoo'-o, Greek 5407; from Greek 5406 (phoneus); to be a murderer (of) :- kill, do murder, slay.
phoneus, fon-yooce', Greek 5406; from Greek 5408 (phonos); a murderer (always of criminal [or at least intentional] homicide; which Greek 443 (anthropoktonos) does not necessarily imply; while Greek 4607 (sikarios) is a special term for a public bandit) :- murderer.
What should the penalty be for the conviction of a person committing criminal homicide? God's Word declares it to be capital punishment, which is DEATH! (Note: According to the law there must be more than one witness to enact the death penalty. Numbers 35:30 "Whoso killeth any person, the murderer shall be put to death by the mouth of witnesses: but one witness shall not testify against any person to cause him to die.")

Here is the law stating the penalty of capital punishment for one who "lies in wait" and commits a premeditated murder.

Deut. 19:11-13
But if any man hate his neighbour, and lie in wait for him, and rise up against him, and smite him mortally that he die, and fleeth into one of these cities:

[12] Then the elders of his city shall send and fetch him thence, and deliver him into the hand of the avenger of blood, that he may die.

This is God's law and we are instructed by Him not to pity the criminal like we see so many bleeding-hearts do today! Then too, we can all take comfort in knowing that the executed murder will not be able to be released and go forth and murder some other innocent person!
[13] Thine eye shall not pity him, but thou shalt put away the guilt of innocent blood from Israel, that it may go well with thee.
If we executed God's laws in our nation these things would cease from happening among us and we would once again be able to safely walk the streets at night.  I wonder what God thinks about abortion!

Now let's see what Christ has to say about the spiritual application of the Law of Murder, i.e. spiritual murder!

Matthew 5:22
But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.
A "brother" does not mean just one of your immediate family members, but one who is of the true House of Israel, one of the brothers and sisters to whom God's elect are to let see their light shine! You see, if you are in the light, then you shall be judged for the way you treat your brothers and sisters, for if you are the cause, without excuse, of their stumbling and falling to their spiritual death, then you shall pay the price... even the price of a convicted murderer if it is intentional! In other words, we must be careful in dealing with our brothers so as not to give occasion for them to stumble and fall!  So stay in the LIGHT and love (agapao) your brother.
1 John 2:9-11
He that saith he is in the light, and hateth his brother, is in darkness even until now.

[10] He that loveth [agapao] his brother abideth in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him.

For example, if you "put your brother down" (call him Raca) for what he believes then you shall be held accountable for you have thrown up a wall of accusation and now give your brother occasion to stumble. Let Satan be the accuser and let Christ's disciples teach God's Word in a positive manner as "it is written" and let the chips fall where they may. That is why true teachers of God's Word NEVER single out churches or denominations or other ministries or individuals in any of their teachings. Sure, the salty teaching may offend some but let it be that which is written, the two-edged sword of God (Rev. 1:16), be that which cuts the heart and soul... for when the wound heals over that person shall be made ever spiritually stronger.

Finally, Christ says if you "shall say, thou Fool", which is to purposely condemn your brother as a religious "moros", i.e. to "write him off" thereby turning off the light of truth to that brother, then you are nothing more than a spiritual murderer and you are in grave danger of being judged yourself to the lake of fire! How dare you play God and set yourself up as the Judge!

fool = moros, mo-ros', Greek 3474; probably from the base of Greek 3466 (musterion); dull or stupid (as if shut up), i.e. heedless, (moral) blockhead, (apparently) absurd :- fool (-ish, Î -ishness).
musterion, moos-tay'-ree-on, Greek 3466; from a derivative of muo (to shut the mouth); a secret or "mystery" (through the idea of silence imposed by initiation into religious rites) :- mystery.
The point is, be extremely careful how you treat your brothers and sisters. Stay in the light and love (agapao) your brother, doing that which is right according to God's Word, according to His righteous ways, regardless of personal feelings. You see, the very salvation of your brother can be at stake because of what you DO and what you TEACH!
 
Here then is some wisdom and instruction from our Lord concerning what we should do when we realize we have given occasion for our brother to stumble.
Matthew 5:23
Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee;
If you KNOW (remember) that your brother is at odds with you because of something you have done, which may cause him to stumble and fall, then because you KNOW you are a potential (spiritual) murderer and you better get it resolved.
[24] Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.
Go make amends with your brother, lest your actions be the cause of him turning away from Christianity and seeing the light of truth.
[25] Agree with thine adversary quickly, whiles thou art in the way with him; lest at any time the adversary deliver thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and thou be cast into prison.
To "agree with your adversary", e.g. one who makes accusations against you, does not mean to agree that your adversary is right! It simply means to use wisdom and reconcile or resolve your differences as quickly as possible so as to avoid confrontation and being delivered up!

Take note that the "adversary" is one of the many names of the old serpent, that old dragon the Devil! Remember we learned in our 5th study concerning Eve's experience that we should not argue with Satan. That means we should not argue with his "tail" either, i.e. those who follow after him and do his work!

[26] Verily I say unto thee, Thou shalt by no means come out thence, till thou hast paid the uttermost farthing.
So use wisdom and be wiser than the serpent or you can of your own doing make your trials and tribulation much more difficult than need be and even miss out on an opportunity to give witness and testimony before the Adversary himself at that hour of his defacto presence.
1 Peter 5:8
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:
This is also a word to the wise who know of the delivering up of God's elect (Mark 13:9-11) that shall take place when the Adversary (Satan) has been cast out of heaven to this earth with his angels (Rev. 12:7-9) and sits in the temple of God claiming to be God (2 Thes. 2). If you are in the light, then use wisdom and always follow the instructions of Jesus Christ which in this case are to not argue with those who follow after the abominable one believing he is Christ. Rather agree quickly with your adversaries, even in the byways, lest you be delivered up before the appointed time! Take heed!

Next we shall examine the next two commandments Christ gave great emphasis to concerning the DOING and TEACHING of His elect. They are the Law of Adultery, which most see only as pertaining to the flesh act and/or thinking of "doing it" in one's mind, and the Law of Perjury or swearing falsely under oath. Well, we shall "see" and learn from the Lord Jesus Christ that there is much more than just "meets the (flesh) eye" when it comes to the "adultery" He speaks of!

If you are going to be a disciple of Jesus Christ and teach the Word of God, then you better have your heart set in the right place and possess those Beatitudes Christ outlined in the first part of the 5th chapter of Matthew. Do you remember what Christ told His disciples, which means He told you if you are a student of His Word (remember "disciple" means "learner" or one who is disciplined in the Word), in Matthew 5:20? "For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven."

Understand that there is one thing our Father greatly detests and that is someone who leads His children astray from His Word, which is what Satan did to a third of God's children (Rev. 12:4) in "the world that then was" (2 Pet. 3:6) and for which he received the death sentence to perish by fire (Ezek. 28:18), in the lake of fire. Make no mistake about it, teaching God's Word, or should we say pretending to be a teacher of God's Word, is a very serious matter, even a life and death matter concerning the very souls of our brothers and sisters, i.e. their eternal salvation.

You "see", Christianity is not a religion nor a church system of ritual worship and ceremonies where you are supposed to do this good work and perform that good deed to be in good standing and then told that those things are pleasing to God and accounted as righteousness. Have you not read what Christ said concerning those who call themselves Christians and who say "Lord, Lord" and have done "good works", how that they shall not all enter into the kingdom of heaven? Matthew 7:21 "Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

We will cover this in more detail a few chapters hence in Mat. 7:21-29, because just like the scribes and Pharisees, many preachers and ministers have their people follow after a whole bunch of do's and don'ts, traditions of men, which they impose on the people as religious duty. Meanwhile, though most teach that one should not murder, nor commit adultery, nor tell lies, etc., they themselves are a bunch of spiritual murderers, spiritual whoremongers, adulterers, and false witnesses to the truth of God's Word. True, some are themselves sorely deceived by the traditions of men. Nevertheless, the problem is they have so spiritually "seduced the woman"(church) that she thinks she is espoused to the Lord Jesus Christ, but the reality is that there is another Jesus to whom she is awaiting to wed. That one is the false messiah who comes first (2 Thes. 2) at the sound of the 6th trump and takes the first woman in the field, who is symbolic of the apostate churches!

Let us now resume our study in chapter 5 of Matthew where Christ continues with His instruction to His disciples-soon-to-be-teachers who have gone up on the mount to hear His voice.

Matthew 5:27
Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery:
Remember what Jesus Christ said in Matthew 5:18? "For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled." That means it is still NOT OK to commit adultery. However, keep in mind throughout this chapter that Christ is teaching His disciples who would go forth and teach others, and to that end He is addressing the righteousness, doing that which is right, of the disciples verses that of the scribes and Pharisees. In other words, He is teaching concerning the heart of a disciple and teacher of God's Word.
[28] But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.
Unfortunately, this verse has long been misunderstood and so inappropriately used by "those to whom it actually applies" to lay a guilt trip on men who see one of God's beautiful curvy creatures pass by! It's as if some don't know that God made women to be attractive to men and vice versa? To wit, the admiration of God's beautiful creation including members of the opposite sex is NOT a sin and this verse comes nowhere near declaring it to be so! So do not confuse the natural "desire" of a young person, for instance, to want to be with a member of the opposite sex as "covetous", which is what the words "lust after" mean.

You "see", to fully understand the depth of the spiritual adultery in one's heart that Christ is talking about in this verse one must first understand the true meaning of the original Greek words translated into English as "looketh" and "lust". Then one must understand that Christ did not take the commandment "Thou shalt not commit adultery", which applies to both men and women alike, and make it gender specific to a male looking upon a female. The words Christ used were "whosoever" (ho #3558, including the feminine he, hay; and the neuter to, to; in all their inflections) and "woman" (gune, specially a wife). In other words, the "woman" is His woman, one who belongs to Christ, i.e. a Christian man or woman.

Spiritually speaking throughout the entire Bible, "adultery" is constantly used to symbolize idolatry/apostasy and the "woman" is constantly used to represent true Israel and the church. So, just as Christ was talking about the spiritual death of our "brothers" of the House of Israel in raising the spiritual level of our understanding concerning the Law of Murder which we covered in our last study, He now does the same with the Law of Adultery concerning "apostatizing the church"! Again, there is no gender intended in this anymore than there is in the circumcision today, which is now not of the flesh but of the hearts of both men and women alike (Col. 2:11).

Let us now look at the Greek words for "looketh" and "lust".

looketh = G991 blepo˘  blep'-o
A primary verb; to look at (literally or figuratively):—behold, beware, lie, look (on, to), perceive, regard, see, sight, take heed. Compare G3700.
The word "blepo" is often translated "take heed" because it means to give full regard and pay close attention to something, as if to "focus" on it. In other words, it is not to casually look at something, but rather to "take heed" to it, to diligently "keep looking" (see note on Mat. 5:28 in the Companion Bible)!
lust = G1937 epithumeo˘ ep-ee-thoo-meh'-o
From G1909 and G2372; to set the heart upon, that is, long for (rightfully or otherwise):—covet, desire, would fain, lust (after).
Again, we are to understand this from the perspective of being a true disciple of Christ and teaching His Word to our brothers and sisters, which is the overall subject of what Christ is teaching His disciples here in Matthew 5. If your heart's desire is to find a way, to "look upon" to make a "woman" your own, i.e. to seduce her into being "your own" instead of Christ's, then you are an adulterer, a false teacher, and your righteousness does not exceed that of the scribes and Pharisees, for that's exactly what they are!

And so quite frankly, though many might disagree, what Christ is talking about is not that of a man having a momentary "sexy" thought pop through his head when a drop dead gorgeous blond passes by. It is to purposely, looking upon looking (blepo), "set your heart upon" seducing a "woman", which is analogous to what we call "putting the make on her"! Therefore, just as it is NOT OK to put the make on everything that passes by, it is also NOT OK to put the make on Christians for covetous reasons, to make them your own, to bring them into your own little church instead of espousing them to Christ.

The apostle's Paul and Peter both understood this well and because it is so important that we understand the significance of spiritual adultery/apostasy, let us "see" what they have to say.

Here's what Paul says to the "woman":

2 Cor. 11:2-4
For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ.
Do you understand that when you lead someone to Jesus Christ and teach them the truth of His Word, you are espousing them to Him, and rightfully so for they belong to Him. However, Satan, through his ministers who appear as "angels (ministers) of light", will come and try to spiritually seduce them, to look upon them with covetous desire, just like Satan, that old serpent, did when he took Eve's virginity from her in the garden.
[3] But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.
Jesus Christ said in Mat. 24, Mark 13, and Like 21, that in the last days, many shall come in His name and deceive (seduce) many for they have eyes full of adultery (idolatry)! 2 Peter 2:14 "Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children."

They are here now, so watch out Christian!

[4] For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.
Did you know there was another Jesus? Of course there is and his name is the Instead-of-Jesus, Satan, who will come to earth as the spurious messiah, before the real Jesus returns.

The many seducers who come in Christ's name "desire occasion" to "glory" as servants of God, i.e. set themselves up to be something they are not! Paul taught the truth of God's Word boldly and straight on, with NO AGENDA (such as money or glory) other than espousing the woman to Christ. Paul "cut off" those false apostles which desire occasion!

2 Cor. 11:12-15
But what I do, that I will do, that I may cut off occasion from them which desire occasion; that wherein they glory, they may be found even as we.

[13] For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.

They are a bunch of pretenders and whoremongers who appear to be Christian ministers. Take heed that no man deceive you!
false apostles = G5570 pseudapostolos  psyoo-dap-os'-tol-os
From G5571 and G652; a spurious apostle, that is, pretended preacher:— false teacher.

transforming = G3345 metasche˘matizo˘ met-askh-ay-mat-id'-zo
From G3326 and a derivative of G4976; to transfigure or disguise; figuratively to apply (by accommodation):—transfer, transform (self).

[14] And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.

[15] Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.

Woe unto them!

Now here is Peter who not only speaks of those who have adultery in their eyes and hearts concerning the woman, but he exposes what their number one "lust" is! If you have eyes to see, you will NOT be surprised at all!

2 Peter 2:11-15
Whereas angels, which are greater in power and might, bring not railing accusation against them before the Lord.

[12] But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption;

While pretending to be angels of light, false preachers speak evil of the truth, which they understand not, and they also speak evil of those who teach the truth. Don't worry, it is written, they shall receive their just recompense according to their works.
[13] And shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, as they that count it pleasure to riot [lust] in the daytime. Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceivings while they feast with you;
Don't give false preachers occasion to seduce our brothers and sisters! Cut them off with the sword of the Lord, the sword of truth, which is the straight on teaching of the Word of God!
[14] Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children:
To beguile is to "entrap" and "entice", i.e. into one's own spiritual bed for covetous (lustful) reasons... like that of Balaam (next verse)!
[15] Which have forsaken the right way, and are gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Bosor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness;
Balaam preached for MONEY! Would preachers do that TODAY? Hah! Many preachers today look upon the woman (the charch) to lust after her, to seduce her, to entice her into his or her own Beth-aven for the same reason as Balaam. With eyes full of adultery and lust they beguile souls to exercise their covetous practice of Balaam which it to get those dollars rollin' in so they can "take em" and "Bail-em"!

Well, that ought to about do it and at the same time make me popular with preachers!

Matthew 5:29
And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.
Christ admonishes His disciples to pluck out, hew down, and cast aside anything that might "give occasion" to "offend", which means to scandalize, to entice to apostatize, either you or the body of Christ. In other words, just as Paul "cut of occasion" to any thing or any body who might find occasion, you do likewise when you see any false "doctrines" or deceitful "workers" that might cause members of the body of Christ to "stumble and fall" in the apostasy. You nip it or them in the bud and you get rid of whatever "offends" for both your sake and for the sake of the body of Christ, for it applies to each.
offend = #4624 skandalizo˘ skan-dal-id'-zo
To "scandalize"; from G4625; to entrap, that is, trip up (figuratively stumble [transitively] or entice to sin, apostasy or displeasure):—(make to) offend.
[30] And if thy right hand offend thee, cut if off, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.
"Your right hand" is figurative language for doing work much as we say today "he or she is his right hand man", i.e. a worker. And so it is that anyone who does the bidding and supports or aids Satan's "musterion" works of iniquity in bringing forth the great apostasy, that person has his mark in his or her right hand, i.e. they are his "right hand man".
Matthew 5:31
It hath been said, Whosoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement:
First of all, divorce is not a sin! Neither is divorce for a cause other than that which is sanctioned by the Word of God unforgivable upon repentance.In fact, did you know that Christ was divorced? That's right! He divorced His woman (Israel), and put her away because she committed adultery, which we have already noted means she committed "idolatry"!
Jeremiah 3:8
And I saw, when for all the causes whereby backsliding Israel committed adultery I had put her away, and given her a bill of divorce; yet her treacherous sister Judah feared not, but went and played the harlot also.
Divorce is part of God's law and we even see from Jeremiah 3:8 that Christ Himself was divorced from adulterous Israel. So... obviously it is no sin if one gives a bill of divorcement for the cause of adultery, is it? For then would Christ be a sinner! Why then would you look down upon a brother or sister is divorced? If you do, then you have done what Christ talked about under the Law of Murder and you have "put your brother down (Raca)" without a cause! Be mature in the Word of God and know that there is no commandment that says, thou shalt not divorce an adulterous wife. And even if that brother or sister was divorced for a cause other than adultery and has repented and been forgiven by Christ, how is it that you are above Christ and cannot forgive. Where is it written that divorce is an unforgivable sin? It is NOT written anywhere!

Now to the spiritual teaching of Yeshua:

Matthew 5:32
But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery.
If you as a teacher of God's Word estrange yourself from someone because you don't like him or her or because you were offended or for any other unjustified and unsanctioned cause, other than that person is a "fornicator", an unrepentant "porneo", then you could very well be the cause of that person turning from the truth and committing adultery. Do you want to be held accountable for that? Furthermore, anyone (whosoever) who spiritually marries and jumps in bed with one who is a divorced "porneo" commits adultery! That should be a no-brainer if one understands what the cause of "fornication" is!
fornication = #G4202 porneia por-ni'-ah
From G4203; harlotry (including adultery and incest); figuratively idolatry:— fornication.
"Porneia" comes from the root word "pornos".
pornos = G4205 pornos por'-nos
From pernemi (to sell; akin to the base of G4097); a (male) prostitute (as venal), that is, (by analogy) a debauchee (libertine):—fornicator,  whoremonger.
You put away and cut off those seducers who are harlots, adulterers, male prostitutes (spiritual whoremongers), etc., and do not join together with them or you partake of the whoremongering! Is that too hard to understand? Surely not.
Matthew 5:33
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:
To "forswear" means to swear falsely or to make or take an oath under false pretenses. Again, the subject here in Matthew chapter 5 is the teaching and doing of God's Word as a "disciplined one" in His Word and as one who serves and represents Him. Now obviously one needs to maintain his or her credibility in all one's affairs and tell the truth at all times. However, when you represent someone else as His spokesmen you better be extremely careful not to say things to be true that you either know He didn't say or can't document that He said, i.e. that it is written. This is taken from the Law of Perjury and the Third Commandment.
Leviticus 19:12
And ye shall not swear by my name falsely, neither shalt thou profane the name of thy God: I am the LORD.
Look up the words "falsely" and "profane" in your Strong's Concordance and you will find that they mean "deceitfully" and "to pollute or prostitute" respectively! You better not be doing either when it comes to serving God and teaching His Word.

Here is the Third Commandment against doing just that!

Exodus 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.


(Editors Note: And you thought taking The Lord's name in vain meant don't swear as in using a curse word! I'll bet there was a day when you even got your mouth washed out with soap for cursing! And now you find out it means to tell a lie and say, "The Lord said this or that")

This is yet another example of how shallow the understanding is of those to whom this commandment most applies. You "see", most teach that this has to do with using "profanity" or "bar-room" language in which God's name or Christ's name is used. However, though that shows a lack of character and discipline to use such distasteful and disrespectful language, to take the name of the LORD in vain means much more than that. It is take on His name, as a Christian, even as a representative of His and to use it in a vain (empty) sense which we read of in Lev. 19:12! In other words, if you claim to be a Christian, especially a teacher or preacher of His Word, which means you take on His name as one who represents Him, and you teach "deceitfully", such as teaching the traditions of men's church systems, or you "pollute" the Word of God, then you indeed have violated the Third Commandment. And you know what else? MANY there be that do so in these last days for Jesus Christ Himself said it would be that way... and so it IS!
Matthew 24:4
And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.

[5] For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.

These many so-called Christian preachers and teachers of God's Word do indeed take His name in vain for they make void the covenant of God, His Word.
Matthew 15:6
... Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition.

[9] Ye hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying,

[8] This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.

[9] But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.

Read the details of what God has to say to the false prophets of our people in the entire 13th chapter of Ezekiel which is addressed to them.
Ezekiel 13:1-2
And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,

[2] Son of man, prophesy against the prophets of Israel that prophesy, and say thou unto them that prophesy out of their own hearts, Hear ye the word of the LORD;

Friend, if you say out of your own mind, i.e. from your own thoughts and pre-conceived ideas, that what you are saying is the "word of the LORD", then you are in BIG TROUBLE with your Father! In other words, if you say the LORD told you this or that or that He said something which is not written, then God help you!
Ezekiel 13:7
Have ye not seen a vain vision, and have ye not spoken a lying divination, whereas ye say, The LORD saith it; albeit I have not spoken?
They are LIARS that say God told them someone out there in TV land has a bad knee and God is healing it right now! They profane His name and pollute His Word. And for what? Well, you know...
Ezekiel 13:19
And will ye pollute me among my people for handfuls of barley and for pieces of bread, to slay the souls that should not die, and to save the souls alive that should not live, by your lying to my people that hear your lies?
They are liars and spiritual adulterers, spiritual murderers, and perjurers.
[20] Wherefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against your pillows, wherewith ye there hunt the souls to make them fly, and I will tear them from your arms, and will let the souls go, even the souls that ye hunt to make them fly.
God did say He is against their cover-ups of His truth whereby they lie to our people and tell them they are going to "fly away" in some rapture of the church! That is NOT TRUE and 2 Thes. 2 documents without refute!

So be careful how you take the Lord's name and don't make oaths (swear) confirming the Word of God to our people by anything. I am is the LORD.

Christ explains:

Matthew 5:34
But I say unto you, Swear not at all;
You can NOT make anything come to pass on your own or by any other means!
[34... cont] neither by heaven; for it is God's throne:
God is in complete control of heaven.
[35] Nor by the earth; for it is his footstool:
God is in complete control of earth.
[35... cont] neither by Jerusalem; for it is the city of the great King.
God is in complete control of Jerusalem.
[36] Neither shalt thou swear by thy head, because thou canst not make one hair white or black.
God is in complete control of you too! You "see", He can stop you in your tracks in less than a heartbeat! Your "credentials" of being some "Rev" or your position in the hierarchy of some church, etc., does not give you the authority to speak in His stead, i.e. teach other that which is written.

The sum of the matter is: "You cannot cause anything to come to pass by swearing by anything in heaven or earth." All things shall come to pass exactly as it is written, exactly as our Father says they will! So...

[37] But let your communication be, Yea, yea; Nay, nay: for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil.
Always maintain your personal credibility so that you don't have to confirm by some other means that what you say is true. Even more importantly, do your homework and let your teaching of God's Word be straight on as it is written so that it not be vain through the lies and traditions of men which profane and pollute the Word of God. In other words, let your teaching be black and white because either it is written in God's Word or it isn't. If you confirm (oath) your "logos", what you say and teach, by any other means, you have erred!
communication = logos, log'-os, Greek 3056; from Greek 3004 (lego); something said (including the thought); by implication a topic (subject of discourse), also reasoning (the mental faculty or motive; by extension a computation; specially (with the art. in John) the Divine Expression (i.e. Christ) :- account, cause, communication, Î concerning, doctrine, fame, Î have to do, intent, matter, mouth, preaching, question, reason, + reckon, remove, say (-ing), shew, Î speaker, speech, talk, thing, + none of these things move me, tidings, treatise, utterance, word, work.
So how's your heart?  Are you into "religion" type churchianity, playing church like the scribes and Pharisees, or is your heart pure in dealing with your brothers and sisters? Are you a "seducer" or do you "cut off" that which offends? Examine what comes out of your heart for only the pure in heart shall be happy and blessed and shall "see" God. Matthew 5:8 "Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God." The hypocrites who play church and mislead our people shall also receive their just reward, but there shall not be happiness but rather weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth.

Please note the following words of Christ concerning religious hypocrisy:

Matthew 15:17
Do not ye yet understand, that whatsoever entereth in at the mouth goeth into the belly, and is cast out into the draught?

[18] But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man.

[19] For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies:

Isn't that amazing? These are the exact things Christ is teaching about to His disciples-soon-to-be teachers on the mount.

[20] These are the things which defile a man: but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man.

How much wisdom and understanding do you have from our Father's Word concerning the "wonderful works of God" and His plan of salvation in this final generation? His works are made known throughout the scriptures but are clearly and concisely summarized in the Song of Moses (Deut. 32) and even in the Book of Joel which Peter quoted part of in Acts chapter 2 on that first Pentecost Day following the resurrection. Then too, just knowing the works of the two churches of Philadelphia and Smyrna (Rev. 3 & 2) will give you a pretty good heads up.

You "see", the sons and daughters of God (Acts 2) who are the brothers and sisters of the church of Philadelphia (Rev. 3), have been given the key of David which unlocks the "visions of the prophets" and after "seeing" (understanding) those visions they go forth and prophesy (teach) those visions, i.e. the Word of God, to their brothers and sisters of the house of Israel. This they do speaking boldly and direct after the manner of "it is written" and "thus saith the Lord"... regardless of what traditions of men are taught in their churches. However, there comes a time when some of God's elect shall be delivered up and shall give witness and testimony before synagogues and councils and before kings and rulers (Mat. 24, Mark 13, Luke 21).

And so up to this point in our study of Matthew chapter 5, Christ has shown His disciples, even those who would go forth to teach His Word in this final generation, how to deal with their brothers and sisters of the House of Israel and those "neighbors" who embrace Christianity. Now He is going to tell them (us) how to handle our enemies and those who persecute us for HIS NAME'S SAKE. Again, it is important that we understand that He is not instructing the multitudes, but rather God's elect!

Matthew 5:38
Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth:
This is a quote from Exodus chapter 21 concerning the "Law of Retaliation (repayment for injury)".
Exodus 21:23
And if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life,

[24] Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot,

[25] Burning for burning, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.

"These laws made prisons unnecessary and prevented crime" (Companion Bible, pg. 103). You "see", Christian's are NOT pacificists and they are to protect and defend their families and their nation and execute His justice in all the land, for it is the Godly thing to do! If an enemy strikes us, e.g. Pearl Harbor in WWII, take out one their major cities. Don't turn and give them San Francisco too! If an enemy destroys the Twin Towers, take out their network so that these things cease from happening! Likewise, if some thug comes up to you or breaks into your home to harm you and/or your family, you love them real good and show them why they made a big mistake in attacking the nest of a child of God. Bam! Boff! KERPOW!

Have you read how the disciple Peter was prepared to defend himself... and Christ as well.

John 18:10
Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest's servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant's name was Malchus.
After all the time Peter spent with Jesus, the Lord didn't tell him it was not ok to carry a sword for self defense. And even after Peter drew it and cut off the ear of the servant of the high priest, albeit Peter was interfering in the Plan of God, Christ still did not tell him not to carry it, but rather to put it back in its sheath.
[11] Then said Jesus unto Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?
The point Christ was making to Peter was that the Plan of God must needs be fulfilled. So too must "the plan" carried out by God's elect in this final generation be fulfilled. And it is written (and therefore part of the plan) that not only shall the "latter day rain fall" as God pours out His Spirit on ALL flesh, but there shall be persecution brought about and the delivering up of God's elect for His name's sake, during which time His servants shall give testimony! Luke 21:12-13 "But before all these, they shall lay their hands on you, and persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues, and into prisons, being brought before kings and rulers for my name's sake. [13] And it shall turn to you for a testimony.

Again, we have learned thus far in our study of this 5th chapter of Matthew how we are to be compassionate, non-judgmental, without lustful eyes (covetous), etc., while holding fast to the true Word of God in teaching our brothers and sisters and neighbors. Now Christ tells us what to do when it comes to the evils (poneros) of persecution and spite that are brought about by both the teaching of and the witnessing of the truth of God's Word!

Matthew 5:39
But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.
Keep in mind that this teaching is not given to the multitudes, but directly to Christ's disciples, His teachers, meaning to you if you have eyes to see, and it is in regard to your righteousness (doing that which is right) when it comes to teaching His Word and giving witness for Christ's sake. Jesus is telling us not to retaliate "an eye for an eye" when someone smites us on the cheek for teaching the truth of God's Word.

You "see", when someone comes against you and smites you because you teach and hold fast to the truth, they literally smite Jesus Christ Himself and He will see to it that they are repaid, i.e. "receive their just recompense"! As it is written, Vengeance belongs to the Lord. In fact, the very day Christ returns is called the "Day of Vengeance" (Isa. 61:2). He will take care of those who trouble you, to whom you give witness as a child of God for their own good, if you understand the Plan of God to be carried out in this final generation. 2 Thes. 1:6-8 "Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you; [7] And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, [8] In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ."

Paul also speaks of the "repayment" belonging to God.

Romans 12:17
Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.

[18]If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.

Christ will give us good instruction in the next few verses concerning how to live peaceably with all men, if it be possible, which unfortunately sometimes it is not.
[19] Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.
And now here is some further instruction on how we need to conduct ourselves as men and women of God.
Matthew 5:40
And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloke also.
Always maintain your credibility and be a good upstanding citizen in your community and in your nation else you lose the respect of others and your teaching appears to them as hypocritical. So, if you as a teacher of God's Word have done something unjust to cause a person to sue you at law then bite the bullet and go out of your way to settle the matter lest you bring reproach upon Christ.
[41] And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.
This statement is in reference to the practice of government and/or the military forcefully requiring citizens to perform service such as the practice of the Roman soldiers who often required persons to carry their gear for a mile. Be known as one who is willing to "go the extra mile" when it comes to service! You see, if you are a disciple of Christ, then you represent the family of God, so let's all represent our family well! God's elect are just that... elected by God to serve our brothers and fellow mankind. We are NOT sent as "God's elite", meaning that we better than everyone else and should therefore expect some sort of special treatment in society!
[42] Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away.
If you have the means to help others and they ask of you, then lend a helping hand. However, be sure to exercise discernment using wisdom and good common sense so that you are not ripped-off or taken advantage of and now look like a fool!

Also, there is an old adage that goes:

Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day.
Teach a man how to fish and you feed him for life.

Remember, we are here to serve Christ and plant seeds and bring forth fruit for the kingdom of God. Our service also includes the non-believer and the ungodly alike, and so what do you do if you find it is your enemy who hungers or thirsts?

Romans 12:20
   Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head.
[21] Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.
These next two verses (43 & 44) along with "turn your other cheek" have so been taken out of context, misunderstood, and used by mealy-mouthed preachers and ministers who like to sugarcoat everything and pretend utopia exists, to portray Christians as a bunch of pushovers, door-mats and second-class citizens.

Nothing could be further from the truth!

Matthew 5:43
Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.
This is taken from Lev. 19:18.
Leviticus 19:18
Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am the LORD.
Christ now takes this a step further to include your foes [enemies], be they personal, political, or religious!
Matthew 5:44
But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;
By the way, the words "bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you" are NOT found in any of the critical texts so that this verse should read "Love your enemies and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you." You see, you may well be the occasion or opportunity by which they see the light shine! You show them love simply by being just and fair in your dealings with them. Being mature in His Words means that we pray not that they "perish" but that they might be converted and come to repentance and become a child of God. In other words, just as our Father is patient in dealing with us, so let us be likewise patient for the sake of their salvation... for it is our Father's will that all should come to repentance. 2 Peter 3:9 "The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance."

That having been said, to love (agapao) your enemies does not mean that you let them walk all over you.Sometimes "tough love" is required which involves rebuke or even chastisement which in no way is to be confused with vengeance! Our Father sometimes rebukes and chastens us... why?

Because He loves us and wants what is best for us:

Rev. 3:19
As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.
Remember again the context of Christ's teaching here in Matthew chapter 5. He began with the "Beatitudes" of the saints, His elect, and has since been giving them instruction in how to conduct themselves and their affairs in teaching His Word to their brethren and in giving testimony and witness to others. You "see", if you are one of God's elect and you understand Romans chapter 8 concerning the justification, glorification, predestination and calling, then you know that you are not here at this present time for yourself! You are here to serve God and be part of the "wonderful works of God" which He performs through the brotherhood, those sons and daughters, His servants and handmaidens of Acts chapter 2.
Matthew 5:45
That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.
We are talking about the light of truth, symbolized by the sun (solar), which is His Word brought forth to this final generation after the manner symbolized by the "latter day rain". Again, it is written in Joel chapter 2 and quoted by Peter in the 2nd chapter of the Book of Acts that "it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams (Acts 2:17)". If you are of those sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, i.e. children of God, then it is through you that His Spirit is poured out, which is to say it is through you through whom the latter day rain is brought forth from heaven. Do you have eyes to see and ears to hear to understand the wonderful works of God in these last days? He sends that latter day rain on the "just and on the unjust", so be righteous according to God's Word in your dealing with both, not just your own!
[46] For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?
Yes, but to have the maturity in God's Word to look past the natural bond of affection (phileo) of one's own, and understand that our Father loves and is concerned about all of His children, the good, the bad, and the ugly, is the mark of a true disciple and servant of Yahveh!
[47] And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?
Are you rich in "spirit" as are those of the church of Smyrna in Rev. 2:8-11? You see, there is not much tribulation when it comes to embracing (saluting) your brethren (one of the House of Israel). It is when your enemies and foes come against you because of His name's sake that things get a little rough, i.e. persecution, reviling, and being delivered up before councils, etc.!
Rev. 2:8-10
And unto the angel of the church in Smyrna write; These things saith the first and the last, which was dead, and is alive;

[9] I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan.

The poverty spoken of here concerns those who are "poor in spirit", meaning they are contrite and humble before God and therefore rich in the wisdom and knowledge and spiritual blessings of God. Consequently, they fear only God and so they can "cut it" before their foes with the "agapao" Christ speaks of here in Matthew 5!
[10] Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.
Matthew 5:10 "Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven."
Matthew 5:48
Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.
Be mature and complete in the Word of God. And as a child and servant or handmaiden of His, let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your Father which is in heaven (Mat. 5:16). That is why He sent you! What an honor and a privilege it is to serve Him in these last days.

Thank you Father, which art in heaven. Hallowed by thy name!

As we completed chapter five in the Book of Matthew, Jesus Christ told His disciples to become "perfect", which means to become complete or "mature" in the Word of God that we might be able through the knowledge and wisdom of His Word to deal with others as our Father would have us do, according to His will. Now Christ is going to continue His private instruction to His disciples on the mount and continue to compare their righteousness to that of the religious hypocrites, phonies, who follow after the traditions of men. In doing so, He is going to teach us concerning the five following categories:

Almsgiving
Prayer
Fasting
Riches
Cares

Hopefully you will be able to "see" the difference between Christianity and Churchianity, which is but a "religion" based on traditions, not on the Word of God.

Matthew 6:1
Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven.
The Greek word translated "Take heed" in this verse is "pros-echo" which means to "turn one's mind, thought, or attention to a thing, be intent upon it" (see "A Critical Lexicon and Concordance to the English and Greek New Testament", E.W. Bullinger, pg. 366)! So when Jesus Christ says "prosecho" to us, He is instructing us to turn our attention to the points He is making and take a personal inventory to "see" whether our conduct aligns with the Word of God or the traditions of men as exemplified by the hypocrites, which means the play-actors, i.e. those who play the preacher/church game.

Also, according to all the critical texts the phrase "your alms" should read "your righteousness" which is what these five subjects we are now covering (almsgiving, prayer, fasting, riches, and cares) have to do with. Remember Christ said that your righteousness must exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees (hypocrites) else you are simply not a disciple and servant of Jesus Christ and therefore "ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven" (Mat. 5:20). You must be able to "see" through the hypocrisy of those who claim to be Christ's representatives but in fact have only a form of "religion" made up of the traditions of men and deceptively labeled "Christian". Why do we say "deceptively" labeled Christian?

Because a Christ-ian is a "Christ-man", a person who follows Jesus Christ, the Word of God, and not a follower of some church system laden with rituals and ceremonies and praise and worship services, etc., while its members remain Biblically empty-headed, i.e. void of the knowledge of His Word.

So "take heed" and examine yourself and have the courage to do a "reality check" against His Word. And should you discover that what you do in serving and giving to God, which is your alms, are done with the intent to be seen of men and women, then "know" that you have a real ego problem... because the glory you seek is for yourself and not for your Father which is heaven. Matthew 5:16 "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven."

[2] Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.
Do not sound a trumpet means "don't blow your own horn" to make an announcement, to draw attention to yourself, to make yourself look good and show people what a magnificent and magnanimous person you are! If you do blow your own horn, not only will that "glory" be the totality of your reward, but eventually, lest ye repent, Luke 14:11 will come to pass on your behalf: "For whosoever exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted."
[3] But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth:
Just do that which is right according to His Word and let it go at that! You do not have to let others, including members of the body of Christ, know what you did either! For if you are mature (perfect) in the Word of God then the fact that your heavenly Father "knows" should be sufficient. In other words, just as one who is "mature" can be patient and have peace of mind in knowing that our Father will execute vengeance on His/our enemies, one who is "mature" also knows that He will not forget to reward those who love and serve Him. However, if you seek the glory of men to build yourself up, that is all the reward you are ever going to get. So glory hard!
[4] That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly.
Do not be one who "wears your Christianity on your sleeve". In fact, be extra careful in your business dealings with those who do, those who go out of their way to boast and make it a point that they are Christian! Remember that Christ said to let your conversation be yea, yea, and nay, nay, so don't claim Christianity to "confirm to others" that your word is good... for if it is not, and it must not be if in your mind you need to use something else to make you "appear" credible, then you bring dishonor to Christ.
[5] And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.
Oh how "religious" the hypocrites like to appear (act)! Many sport fancy robes. Some wear religious headgear or other hair coverings. Some get into special pious prayer positions, etc. All this they do "for show" which is to "be seen of men"!  Is this how we are instructed to act?

Here is the answer:

[6] But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.
The word "closet" means a "secret place", especially of the mind. So no matter where you are physically, whether in a crowd or all alone, at any time whatsoever you can spiritually enter into that private place in your mind and shut the door, i.e. shut out the rest of the world, and speak directly to your Father.
[7] But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.
Stop and consider for a moment how one communicates with his or her earthly father. For example, imagine a teenager going to his father to ask to borrow the car for the evening and saying over and over to him in a monotone and drawn out voice, "Father may I have the car keys... to..nigh..ite? Father may I have the car keys... to..nigh..ite?", and so on! How effective do think that would be with most fathers? I mean, with everyone else you talk in a normal intelligent manner but with him you go into this religious mode thing? Go figure!

You see, to use vain repetitions is akin to stammering which is very similar to chanting. To that end, repeating a prayer in a ritual fashion over and over again is not something which comes from the heart and furthermore, it is really not personal communication at all, is it? Do you think that your heavenly Father is totally unaware of what is going on in the lives of His children, of which you are one?

Note: If you would like a great example of the vain repetitions of priests vs. the direct communication of God's servants to their Father, then read 1 Kings 18:25-39 concerning Elijah and the priests of Baal!

So be "mature" and grow up and cast aside the childish traditions of men! Your Father is very intelligent and it is an affront to speak to Him in such an impersonal and chanting manner! Take heed therefore to the instruction of Jesus Christ in the following verse and "do not be as one who uses vain (empty) repetitions"!

[8] Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask Him.
Maturity is knowing and believing Jesus Christ, the Word of God, who just said that your Father knows what you have need of even before you ask Him. Therefore, there is no need even to use vain repetitions, is there? HE KNOWS! In fact, just to confirm that He knows, we have documentation that sometimes He even provides the answer before His servants are finished with their prayers.

Such was the case with Daniel!

Daniel 9:21-23
Yea, whiles I was speaking in prayer, even the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning, being caused to fly swiftly, touched me about the time of the evening oblation. [22] And he informed me, and talked with me, and said, O Daniel, I am now come forth to give thee skill and understanding. [23]At the beginning of thy supplications the commandment came forth, and I am come to shew thee; for thou art greatly beloved: therefore understand the matter, and consider the vision.
So how do the servants of God pray and make supplications to their Father? Well, there is a proverb that begins with "As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he..." (Prov. 23:7). And so it is with the prayer and communication that comes forth from any person. It originates with that which is in his or her heart, i.e. a person's thoughts and intents! To wit, we have already "seen" in the "Beatitudes" of Mat. 5 what is in the "heart" of a true disciple of Christ, remember? First and foremost, they are "poor in spirit" meaning they are humble before God and seek always to give Him the praise and glory, not themselves. Secondly, they "mourn" the injustice caused by the iniquitous and so they long for the kingdom to come, which is the return of the King and His dominion to be set up on earth as it is in heaven. To that end, they are "meek" in allowing the Word of God to guide and direct them in His "wonderful works" according to His will, that they may be of service in "finishing the work" He has sent them to do! Therefore, the prayers they make reflect that which is in their hearts, which is that they "love the Lord their God with all their heart, and with all their soul, and with all their mind" and they "love their neighbors as themselves" (Matthew 22:36-40).

Jesus is now going to show us the "manner" in which His disciples pray and you will find contained in this manner, or model, "7" petitions. The first three are with respect to their love for their Father and the last four pertain to those things which are necessary for one to be a "just" (zadok) servant in carrying the light to the world, i.e. they concern their love for their neighbor, their fellow man. Here is a chart showing the reflection of the "beautiful attitudes" of the children of light in the "manner of the prayer of the elect", which is instead called the Lord's prayer.

PETITION BEATITUDE
 Thy name be hallowed  Matthew 5:3 Blessed are the poor in spirit (humble before God)
 Thy kingdom come  Matthew 5:4 Blessed are they that mourn (Isa. 61:2)
 Thy will be done  Matthew 5:5 Blessed are the meek (seeking His will)
   
 Give us our daily bread  Matthew 5:6 Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness
 Forgive us our debts  Matthew 5:7 Blessed are the merciful
 Lead us not into temptation  Matthew 5:8 Blessed are the pure in heart
 Deliver us from evil  Matthew 5:9 Blessed are the peacemakers
 Matthew 5:10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 
 Matthew 5:11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. 
Matthew 6:9
After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
The very first thing on the mind of His children is gratitude and their reverence (love) for their Father.

Note: The ironic part about "The Lord's Prayer" is that Christ said just before giving this "model" prayer not to use vain repetitions, and yet churches do exactly that and repeat this "manner of prayer" as a ritual itself.

[10] Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
Those who "mourn" pray for the kingdom to be established and His will, not ours, to be done on earth, as it is in heaven.
[11] Give us this day our daily bread.
Christ is that daily bread which comes down from above (as manna) and He is the Living Water and His disciples do eat of that bread and drink of that water for they do hunger and thirst after righteousness. And though we are in the midst of the great famine of these last days (Amos 8:11-13), His servants are filled to the full for there is always a feast at the table of the Lord. You see, His servants pray for the knowledge and wisdom to carry out His will in "declaring His righteousness" to this generation.
[12] And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
A "wise" person knows full well that we all fall short in the flesh, that we all have faults. Furthermore, the wise know that some people's faults are more glaring than others. So let us be mature and show mercy and forgiveness towards others and let God be the one who judges!

One other important thing to make note of here is that asking for forgiveness is NOT the number one priority of God's elect! Some people are so consumed with their own sins and or penitence that their prayers consist of little more than "woe is me, what a sinner am I". To that end, here is a profound quote by E.W. Bullinger from the conclusion of his book titled, "How to Enjoy the Bible", Kregel Publishers, pgs. 416-417:

   "We have written only for those who have "peace with God" (Rom. 5:1), and enjoy "the peace of God" (Phil. 4:7), and know the God of Peace (Rom. 15:33).  Only such have leisure to be occupied with God.  Only such can "sit at the Lord's feet and hear His Word" (Luke 10:39 R.V.).
    All others must be "cumbered about much serving." They must need be occupied with themselves: either as sinners taken up with their sins, or as penitents with their repentance, or as believers with their faith, or as saints with their holiness.
Are "you" your favorite subject? Do thoughts about "you" fill your "heart" to the point you have no "leisure", i.e. free time, to be occupied with God and "hear" His Word? Are you busy "condemning yourself" and thinking about what a sinner you are or what a low-life you have been in the past or what you should be doing or haven't done that you should have? Or are you busy trying to "be good" to atone for your sins, i.e. make up for what you have done or didn't do, to make yourself "feel" better and more worthy? Or are you busy trying to "convince yourself" that you have faith or that you are a good person when you feel like you are not? If any of these are true then you are not at "peace with God" and you do not have peace of mind, and the reason is that you do not really believe the words of Him who is far greater than you and who "Promised" He has forgiven and cleansed you when you confessed to Him. The Truth will set you free and it will free-up a great deal of wasted "processing time" in your head! May God give you wisdom to understand the rest of this profound quote:
    Unless and until we know our completeness in Christ (Col 2:10), and "believe God" when He declares that "He has made us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light" (Col. 1:12), we shall be in such a condition of conscience, and heart, and life as will not leave us any time of occupation with God.
    Instead of going on our way "giving thanks to God" for what He has done, we shall be giving way to mourning for what we have not done. We shall be like David when he "sat in his house" and was occupied with what he would do for the Lord. For, not until we learn what the Lord has done and purposed to do for us, shall we be ready, with David, to go in and sit before the Lord (2 Sam. 7:1:18).
    In the former case David's thought was, "Who I am"; in the latter he was exclaiming, "Who am I, O Lord God?"
And now last but not least on the "mature" minds of God's elect are their trials and tribulations and the deliverance from the evil one, which includes persecution and the delivering up to councils and synagogues which is yet to come. Why is this mentioned last? Because they know the Plan of God includes those things and furthermore He has ALL POWER in both heaven and earth and has already defeated death (Satan)! In other words, there is no doubt in their minds that He has the power to deliver them! You see, the shining of the their light which shall bring forth persecution and the witnessing of Mat. 24, Mark 13, Luke 21, Rev. 11, etc., show forth the glory of God! Compare that attitude with those who make "the Rapture" their number one priority.
Matthew 6:13
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.
This does not mean that we will not have temptations, i.e. trials and tribulations! On the contrary, Christ said that if they persecuted Him, and they did, they will also persecute you (John 15:20)! The point is that our Father has promised that He will not allow us to be led into "undeliverable" trials and temptations. In other words, He will always provide us a way of spiritual escape that we may be able to bear our trials and tribulations.

Paul expounded upon this:

1 Cor. 10:13
There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.
And we know with full assurance that He "will never leave nor forsake us" and that He is able to deliver us because He has ALL POWER in both heaven and earth. (Matthew 28:18 "And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.")

Now Christ is going to emphasis the importance of being merciful and forgiving to others for their trespasses.

Matthew 6:14
For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you:
[15] But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
Looks like we "make our own bed", doesn't it? Would it not be hypocritical to expect others to be kind and forgiving toward us while we are judgmental and grudgmental towards them? Again, that doesn't mean we let others take advantage of us or rip us off while we just stand by and do nothing about it. Rather be "mature" and use wisdom in understanding that we all have weaknesses and at times we do things we shouldn't. Paul understood this concerning himself!

Do you?

Romans 7:14-15 "For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin. [15] For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I."

[16] Moreover when ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.
Again, the righteousness of His disciples, i.e. their doing that which is right, is compared to the hypocrites, the play actors, "religious" people! Don't put on a show to be seen of men. Do not even boast about how much you pray and study the Word of God, etc.
[17] But thou, when thou fastest, anoint thine head, and wash thy face;
Christianity is not a "religion", so don't be a fake! "Be real" and "down to earth" so to speak!
[18] That thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father which is in secret: and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly.
The bottom line is, "Do you seek to please God or men?" The fact is, those who are "mature (perfect) in the Word of God, know that you CANNOT have it both ways!

The rewards have already been declared... but choice is yours!

 "Just how does one make a "spiritual deposit" in heaven?"

The special object and "Divine purpose in the Gospel of Matthew is to set forth the Lord as Yahveh's King" who shall return at the sound of the 7th Trump and establish the Kingdom of God upon the earth. To that end, those who love and serve the King of kings in this final generation have a part in preparing the way for His return at the second advent and though they seek not glory for themselves, they shall be richly rewarded for the wonderful works they do according to His will, which rewards we read of in the Eight Beatitudes. Not only that, it is also written that He has made them kings and priests to reign with Him on the earth (Rev. 5:10 "And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.")

Since the beginning of the 5th chapter, we have been studying the in-depth teachings of Jesus Christ in what is commonly called the Sermon on the Mount, which we noted from the beginning is not "general instruction to the multitudes" but rather "personal instruction to His disciples" who follow Him and seek to hear His voice and obey His commands. (Matthew 5:1 "And seeing the multitudes, He went up into a mountain: and when He was set, His disciples came unto Him.") Isn't it interesting that when we see Hollywood movies depicting Christ giving the Sermon on the Mount, we see Him either standing before throngs of people or walking through the crowds. However, such was not the case at all and as we continue in this 6th chapter of Matthew He is still teaching His disciples who came to Him on the mount apart from the multitudes.

Matthew 6:19
Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:
As background for what we will be learning in today's study we should be reminded that Satan, the king of Tyrus, effectively used prosperity and merchandising (Ezek. 28:16), i.e. trafficking, in the first earth age to draw (chata) one third of God's children (Rev. 12:4) away from the mercy seat of truth and justice. And you know what? He's doing a pretty good job accomplishing the same thing at the end of this earth age too, wouldn't you say?Are you familiar with the riches of the great harlot in Revelation 18 who makes the whole world spiritually drunken and the merchants of the earth to become rich through the abundance of her delicacies? Rev. 18:3 "For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies."

However, a "wise" person, even one who has read the great Book of Ecclesiastes (Christ will mention Solomon in this teaching), knows that this flesh age and all that is contained herein is "vanity", emptiness, i.e. it is TEMPORAL for it shall ALL pass away at the sound of the 7th Trump... including these flesh bodies (1 Cor. 15:51-52). So while many of our brothers and sisters spend an inordinate amount of their time seeking security and peace of mind in the "system", with all its retirement funds and insurances with assurances, entitlements, etc., God's elect are busy doing their Father's will knowing full well that though they must live in this world, their heart and soul are not of this world. In other words, God's elect look past this flesh and all that it has to offer because they know that there is NOTHING in this world that can compare to the riches and glory of the kingdom of God.

So take heed and be sure not to get "caught up" in the system or pulled off track (drawn away) to the point that you become too busy to serve God.

[20] But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
The Greek word for "treasures" is "thesauros" which is #G2344 in your Strong's Concordance and means; a deposit, that is, wealth, (literally or figuratively):--treasure. So let's keep this real simple and use an example. When you "lay up" or make a deposit into the bank or your 401k you stand the chance of losing it, slowly through inflation and taxation or having it ripped off by thieves. I think the ex-employees of Enron, once the largest corporation in America, will attest to the crooks and thieves stealing their treasures, i.e. their retirement money! That is not to say that we should not have retirement accounts or wisely plan for the future, etc. However, we should always be wiser that the serpent and know where our true trust and security and peace of mind do lie, eternally.

So here's a good question, "Just how does one make a "spiritual deposit" in heaven?" Dr. Luke's account gives us great insight into the answer, i.e. how to "lay up treasures" in heaven. It is actually very simple if you have eyes to see. Christ says to "Sell that you have, and give alms".

Well first of all, what is it that God's elect have to sell?

Just the most precious thing in all the universe... the Word of God, His precious truth which gives life, eternal life. How you do your "selling" depends on the talents you have which have been given unto you (Matthew 25:29 "For unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance: but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath.").

Luke 12:33
Sell that ye have, and give alms; provide yourselves bags which wax not old, a treasure in the heavens that faileth not, where no thief approacheth, neither moth corrupteth.
The word "bags" is #G905 and means a pouch (for money) and to "wax not old" means it will never wear out. You see, when you make a spiritual deposit in heaven there is no one who can take it from you. It is yours for all eternity. Then too, the "wise" also know that the time is soon coming, the hour of darkness, when Satan, the spurious messiah, is here defacto and no one will be able to spiritually "buy or sell" unless he or she is part of and has the authority of (the name of) the beast! That leaves God's elect out, doesn't it? Rev. 13:17 "And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name."

The bottom line to all of this is, "Where and with whom does your heart lie?" It what and in whom do you put your trust and security? Do you desire more to make deposits in the First Bank and Trust Co. or is your number one priority to love and serve your Father by declaring His righteousness, thereby making deposits in the First Bank of Heaven?

Matthew 6:21
For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
This is extremely important in this generation where Jeshurun has "waxed fat" (Deut. 32), i.e. America has become wealthy and prosperous, because it really boils down to the difference between light and darkness.
Matthew 6:22
The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light.
"If your eye be single" means "if your eye is clear" as in focused with singleness of mind on the things above (Col 3:2), then you are a child of light and one who walks in and is filled with that light!
1 Thes. 5:5
Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.
Again, the difference is like "day and night" for it separates the children of the day from those who walk in the night.
Matthew 6:23
But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!
The point is that even if you know some truth and see some light, if you are focused on the wealth and prosperity of the harlot then your light doesn't shine! The question is, will you prostitute yourself (pornos) and sell out to the peace and safety and prosperity of the New World Order? Remember Esau, called a fornicator (pornos) in Hebrews 12, sold out his birthright for a bowl of red pottage? Hebrews 12:16 "Lest there be any fornicator, or profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright."

A person who has both "eyes to see" and "eyes that are clear (focused on selling and giving alms)" is one who lets his or her light shine before men!

Luke 11:36
If thy whole body therefore be full of light, having no part dark, the whole shall be full of light, as when the bright shining of a candle doth give thee light.
So which is it for you? You cannot it both ways! You cannot be fully focused on the things of this world and at the same time be fully focused on serving God. Why not? Because to be fully focused means just that!
Matthew 6:24
No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
The word "serve" used here means not only "belong wholly and be entirely under command to" but it means to voluntarily make yourself servant to someone or something! It is in whom and in what YOU decide to put your trust. You must choose between God and mammon because as Christ said, you cannot serve both. Here is the word "mammon" as define by Dr. Strong and Dr. Bullinger respectively:
mammon =  mammonas  mam-mo-nas' #G3126
Of Chaldee origin (confidence, that is, figuratively wealth, personified); mammonas, that is, avarice (deified):—mammon.

mammon = mammonas Chald., that in which one trusts; hence, mammon, i.e. wealth, riches, (non occ.) (Critical Lexicon and Concordance..., E.W. Bullinger, pg. 476.)

Mammon is an interesting word in that is of Chaldean origin letting us know it has to do with Babylon and the avarice or excessive, insatiable desire for wealth or gain. Well, it sure is obvious that most of our leaders and politicians have jumped in bed with the harlot. Don't follow the leaders... follow your Father's Word with singleness of purpose in serving Him in these last days.

Yes, but you don't understand! I've got bills to pay and obligations to fulfill and mouths to feed, etc., etc.! Well, no one is saying to quit your job and go stand on the corner and preach! But don't you know (next verse) that there is more to life than food and clothing and material things?

To that end, Jesus Christ is now going to put things in perspective and make a PROMISE to you that if you will love and serve God in these last days, He will "add" to you (not do it all for you) so that you will not have to be anxious and spend time "worrying" about the necessities of life. In other words, if you serve God and "sell that you have and gives alms" then He promises to take care of you.

Matthew 6:25
Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?
"Therefore" means "on account of this"! In other words, on account of the fact that you cannot serve two masters, if you choose to serve Him then do not worry, which is to take anxious thought, about the things mentioned in verse 25! Worrying never helped anything anyway! It is a total waste of time and energy! In fact, there is nothing so bad that worry won't make worse.

Question? Do you not think God is not able to take care of you? Take a lesson from His nature.

[26] Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?
God gives the fowl of the air instinct to know just what to do, like swoop down and pluck up the worm or the corn seed, and you know what? He can do the same for you. (Personally I'm not big on worms but one should never look a gift-worm in the mouth!)

Next point...

[27] Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature?
The subject is your life and this "adding one cubit" refers to the longevity of your life. Not only is the point made in scripture that your life (in the flesh) is short, but can you extend the length of your life even for one moment? Not only can you NOT do that, but the fact is you could be here one moment and be gone the next, right? We've all seen it happen!
[28] And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin:
Lilies neither till and plant as men do when preparing to grow flax, nor do they spin the flax as women do to make clothing. Yet they are beautifully arrayed.
[29] And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.
When God clothes someone or some thing, there is no comparison to what man can do! Solomon is mentioned here because this wisest of all men had more money, wealth, power, women, booze, and good times than any man ever on earth. He also documented that there is not enough of any of those things in any combination or in totality to bring happiness to the flesh man who walks under the sun for anymore than a short time. The flesh is just never satisfied.

It is also interesting to note that the most common lily is all "dressed in white" like the white linen garments of the saints, which are made up of their righteousness. Rev. 19:8 "And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints."Your righteous acts are the only things you can take with you when you leave the flesh.

Again, this old flesh and this flesh age are both temporal and you have heard the saying, "You can't take it with you!" Well, it is a true statement although it applies only to the material things of this world. But you see, you are not leaving this world with any material things nor even in a flesh body, but rather by being birthed into your spiritual body (read 1 Cor. 15 & Jn. 3). And although you were born into this world "naked" you need not be born "naked" into the spirit! However, if you have no righteous acts and have walked in darkness, you will not only be naked but you will ashamed of your nakedness! Rev. 16:15 "Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame."

[30] Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?
To anxiously "worry" is to doubt the promises of God which shows a lack of faith. A lack of faith is caused by a lack of "substance", a lack of foundation (Heb. 11:1), a lack of knowledge and understanding of His Word. So don't worry about the "things" of this flesh nor project into the future and worry about something which has not even come to pass. Again, that is not to say we do not work and earn our keep. On the contrary, God's elect are hard workers. But your Father will see to it that blessings flow your way and you get some breaks so there is no need to be anxious and let worry occupy your mind and perhaps even incapacitate you. Neither should one who puts his or her trust in God and not mammon be anxious about the five month period of the reign of Satan as the false-christ. A word to the wise!
Matthew 6:31
Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?
Always use wisdom, but do not become a worry-wart and be filled with anxiety. Why? Your Father knows exactly what's going on in your life! You are His precious child!
[32] (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.
These "things" are the food, drink, and clothing mentioned in verse 31. Remember from Mat. 6:8 that He even knows what you have need of (both physically and spiritually) before you ask of Him in prayer. It is kind of like... don't you as a parent know when your kids need a new pair of shoes or that they are going to need supper? I think so!

The point is...

[33] But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
That is His promise! Sell that ye have and give alms in declaring His righteousness to this froward generation and He shall see to it that you have want for nothing. You see, He can both change the course of rivers and cause men to change their minds... for your benefit!

So... "What Me Worry?"

[34] Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.
Fear not! Trust and believe in His promises. Do the work that is set before you according to His Will and lay up for yourself treasures in heaven. The day is coming that you will be glad you did. In fact, if you are one of His elect... you are already glad you did for it is indeed a great pleasure to serve God in this final generation! Mammon just doesn't compare!

Jesus Christ said numerous times in the last chapter (6) to "be not as the hypocrites" for they merely pretend to be disciples of Christ but are in reality false prophets and play-actors indeed. He also told us to "seek first the kingdom of heaven" and our heavenly Father would see to it that we are blessed in such a manner that we would not have to anxiously worry about where our next meal is going to come from.

Christ now continues His instructions to His disciples who went up the mount to hear His voice. The subjects are "seeking the kingdom" and our conduct in teaching our brothers and sisters the precious truth of His Word, i.e. declaring His righteousness, which is the commission of the sons and daughters, the brotherhood, in this final generation.

Matthew 7:1
Judge not, that ye be not judged.
This verse is often misunderstood and wrongfully used to teach that Christians should not even use righteous discernment, so let's first understand what the word "judge" means. It come from the Greek word "krino" which means to divide, to separate, to make a distinction.
judge = G2919 krino  kree'-no
Properly to distinguish, that is, decide (mentally or judicially); by implication to try, condemn, punish:—avenge, conclude, condemn, damn, decree, determine, esteem, judge, go to (sue at the) law, ordain, call in question, sentence to, think.
You see, if you claim to be a disciple of Jesus Christ and yet you set yourself up to be better than others and take it upon yourself to judge or criticize your brothers and sisters, you are asking for big trouble! We are not to speak evil of our brothers nor condemn nor criticize other ministries, denominations, or churches. To that end, you will never see this ministry nor any other ministry which teaches the truth of God's Word, put down our brothers and sisters nor speak evil of them. A wise Christian knows that we were all born naked and spiritually "blind" so we can all say concerning the traditions of men, "There but for the grace of God go I." We are to let God be the judge. James, the brother of Christ, spells it out pretty good for us:
James 4:11-12
Speak not evil one of another, brethren. He that speaketh evil of his brother, and judgeth his brother, speaketh evil of the law, and judgeth the law: but if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but a judge.
We do NOT show the love of God by criticizing other Christians or churches or ministries. The question is, "Who made us judge to criticize and condemn others?" The answer is, "No one, certainly not our Father"! If we go around criticizing our brothers and sisters for what they believe or the church they belong to, etc., we are in grave danger of the judgment ourselves! There are already far too many individuals and "elite" groups who spend the majority of their time judging and criticizing others when they should be teaching their Father's Word and letting their light shine before men that others might see their good works (of teaching the truth, etc.) and glorify their Father which is in heaven.

Again, let God be the judge! Teach His Word as it is written chapter by chapter and line by line and let God take it from there.

[12] There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy: who art thou that judgest another?
Go ahead and set yourself up as judge and see where it gets you in the end!
Matthew 7:2
For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.
Do you have "ears to hear" what Christ is telling you?
Mark 4:24
And He said unto them, Take heed what ye hear: with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you: and unto you that hear shall more be given.
In other words, if you judge others and put your brothers (those of the house of Israel) "down" (hupo, under) when you yourself are no better than they are, perhaps even worse, then you shall pay dearly for it.
Matthew 7:3
And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?
Work on your own problems and quit finding fault with others so as to make yourself look good. Who do you think you are that you can fix or change other people anyway?
[4] Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?
Did you know that hypocritical self righteousness is visible even to many non-believers? It turns them off!
[5] Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.
A hypocrite is a person pretending to be something that he or she is not, like more righteous than everyone else... a goody-goody-two-shoes! Here is Strong's definition of a hypocrite:
hypocrite = #G5273  hupokrite˘s  hoop-ok-ree-tace'
From G5271; an actor under an assumed character (stage player), that is, (figuratively) a dissembler ("hypocrite"):—hypocrite.
Notice that the word hypocrite comes from Strong's # G5271 which is a compound word, hupo-krinomai. Hupo is:
hupo = #5259 is a primary preposition; under, that is, (with the genitive) of place (beneath), or with verbs (the agency or means, through); (with the accusative) of place (whither [underneath] or where [below]) or time (when [at]):—among, by, from, in, of, under, with. In compounds it retains the same genitive applications, especially of inferior position or condition, and specifically covertly or moderately.
And "krino" is the same word translated "judge" in verse 1. So as a true disciple of Jesus Christ be careful not be as the hypocrites, play-actors, who set themselves to be "spiritually" above other people and then criticize or condemn them for what they believe.

Next Christ teaches us that we need to exercise wisdom in teaching the precious Word of God.

Matthew 7:6
Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.
This verse is quite self explanatory. Just remember once again that Christ is speaking to His disciples, those who are "disciplined" in the Word of God and who will go forward and plant seeds and teach His precious holy Word to others. So if you are one of His disciples and you find yourself standing in a "pig pen" surrounded by a bunch of unclean swine, remember Matthew 7:6 and exercise the wisdom contained therein. If you forget and get good and stomped on, perhaps the unpleasant experience will serve as reminder the next time!

Now here is another extremely important thing to understand and teach to others regarding "seeking first the kingdom of heaven".

[7]Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:
You must do some work to seek the kingdom of heaven and unfortunately there seems to be but few people who are willing to do that! Remember, it is not the multitudes who go privately to Christ to hear His voice, but rather His disciples who hunger and thirst after righteousness, i.e. truth. You see, there are many people (multitudes of them) who go to church, but there are actually few of them who seek and study the Word of God (2 Tim. 2:25) on a daily basis and ask Him for their daily bread that they might receive pearls of wisdom.

But the good news is that our Father is not a respecter of persons and He promises that whosoever will come to Him and "ask, and seek, and knock" shall receive those pearls of wisdom and find the true path that leads to life and the door to the kingdom of heaven shall be opened to them.

[8] For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
Again, this is how one seeks the kingdom of God, not how one petitions God to obtain material things? If you are too lazy or not at all interested in asking, seeking, and knocking, then you will eventually find that Christ will close the door in your face when He returns. In fact, we will document that in Mat. 7:26-27! You see, there are "wise virgins" and there are "foolish virgins" (Mat. 25) who lack "wisdom" because they lack the knowledge of His Word. They don't ask, seek, or knock!
James 1:5
If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.
God PROMISES to give you wisdom liberally if you are willing to do some labor in the field. Christ now gives us two examples of what to ask for, bread and meat.
Matthew 7:9
Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?
This is obvious in the natural sense where even a non-believer would not give his son a stone if he were hungry and asked for bread to eat! On the spiritual level, which is what Christ is talking about, if you (a son of God) ask your Father for the true "bread of life", Jesus Christ, the Word of God, He will give you that bread and will not place a "stumbling stone" before you that will cause you to stumble and fall in these last days, which "falling" is called the great apostasy (2 Thes. 2).
stone = G3037 lithos lee'-thos
Apparently a primary word; a stone (literally or figuratively):—(mill-, stumbling-) stone.
[10] Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?
A fish is symbolic of Christianity and also of meat. If you ask for your Father to show you the deeper truths of His Word, He will not give you a serpent who will bite you! You see, the serpent is symbolic of the old serpent, the dragon, the devil, who is Satan the false messiah. Those who have the "seal of God", the knowledge of His Word, in their foreheads in this final generation shall not stumble but shall overcome the beast, i.e. Satan and his New World Order.
[11] If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask Him?
Our Father loves to pour out His blessings upon His children... and if we know and understand that, then as His children and His servants we should be generous and liberal in the same pouring out of His spirit to others!
[12] Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.
Christ now "sums up" the Sermon on the Mount beginning with what we call the "Golden Rule" which sums up the last five of the Ten Commandments all of which He covered in this Sermon on the Mount.
Romans 13:9
For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
James calls it the "Royal Law" and how "honorable" it is indeed.
James 2:8
If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well:
Are you able to "see" and "hear" all the things Christ has taught His disciples on the mount? He has compared the attitudes, the doctrines, the methods of conduct and methods of teaching between those who claim to be His disciples and teachers and those who actually are! The distinction clearly shows the difference between "religion", which is what churchianity is, and "reality", which is what Christianity is. You "see", they are two different paths altogether!
Matthew 7:13
Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:
Yes, there are two gates and two paths to follow! Churchianity and the traditions of men is the broad way which the multitudes follow and the Word of God, true Christianity, is the narrow way which leads to life. The fact is, if you don't "ask and seek and knock", but rather just listen to men, then you are going to stumble in the great apostasy.
way = G3598 hodos hod-os'
Apparently a primary word; a road; by implication a progress (the route, act or distance); figuratively a mode or means:—journey, (high-) way.
[14] Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.
The majority of Christians think that they are on the right path. The problem is that they have allowed themselves to be deceived by the many false prophets Christ warned us about in Mat. 24, Mark 13 and Luke 21 who would come in this final generation. In fact, we will see that He also warns us right here in Mat. 7 about those same false prophets, those hypocritical teachers who are not really teachers of God's Word at all... for they follow the broad path of the traditions of men and never quite get around to teaching our Father's Word whereby our people can enter in at the straight gate. Remember, ALL wisdom comes from the Word of God.  How much of it have you studied? Are you among the few "wise" virgins who study and understand our Father's ways and walk in them or are you on some other path along with the multitudes who will stumble in darkness for lack of "wisdom"? Think about it.
Hosea 14:9
Who is wise, and he shall understand these things? prudent, and he shall know them? for the ways of the LORD are right, and the just shall walk in them: but the transgressors shall fall therein.
Next we are going to see that those who follow the broad path of the traditions of men are indeed shut out of the kingdom.

Jesus Christ explained to us that the gate is wide and the path is broad which leads to destruction and there are many which go in there  (Mat. 7:13). You see, there is only one true Shepherd and one gate into His sheepfold and that way, that door, is Jesus Christ, the Word of God (Jn. 10:9). In other words, you cannot get there simply by going to church or participating in religious ceremonies or worship services or by following any other path such as the broad gamut of the traditions of men. Therefore, the very fact that we are a nation of Biblical illiterates documents that Christ words are true, for "the many" are led astray from the true, lush, green pastures of His word to be taken prey by the wolves, the false prophets, who rob and steal for self gain while causing the spiritual death of our people.

John 10:9-10
I am the door: by Me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.

[10] The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

And so it is that as Jesus Christ concludes His "Teaching on the Mount", He gives a stern warning to His disciples concerning fake preachers and then closes with a few words of great wisdom about how to be one of the "wise" in this final generation who shall be able to withstand the onslaught of the great spiritual tribulation of Satan as the false-christ!

Here is that most important warning:

Matthew 7:15-29
Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
Did you know that the very first sign and warning Christ gave to His disciples when they asked Him on Mount Olivet what signs to look for and how to determine the "when" of the final generation just before His return, was to beware of false prophets (Mat. 24:4-5, Mark 13:5-6, Luke 21: 8)?
Matthew 24:4-5
And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.

[5] For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.

So "Take Heed" and stay away from "pseudopreachers" who are would-be teachers of God's Word! They have the appearance of being Christian ministers and preachers, etc., but they have another agenda which is usually to devour the flock for profit or self-glorification. You can usually tell their intent after listening to them for a little while because it seems they always get around to talking about what is foremost on their minds.
G5578 pseudoprophetes  psyoo-dop-rof-ay'-tace
From G5571 and G4396; a spurious prophet, that is, pretended foreteller or religious impostor:—false prophet.
So do NOT let appearances, one's outer garment, deceive you.

A true teacher of God's Word will always tell you to stay in the Word of God and document and test the things that you hear taught by man, because unfortunately there are many more false teachers than there are true in this final generation. 1 John 4:1 "Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world." A teacher of God's Word will also explain to you the difference between the holy and the profane and how to discern between the clean and the unclean.

Ezekiel 22:26
Her priests have violated my law, and have profaned mine holy things: they have put no difference between the holy and profane, neither have they shewed difference between the unclean and the clean, and have hid their eyes from my sabbaths, and I am profaned among them.
Even in the Millennium God's elect will teach these differences and cause people to exercise spiritual discernment: Ezekiel 44:23 "And they shall teach my people the difference between the holy and profane, and cause them to discern between the unclean and the clean.
[27] Her princes in the midst thereof are like wolves ravening the prey, to shed blood, and to destroy souls, to get dishonest gain.

[28] And her prophets have daubed them with untempered morter, seeing vanity, and divining lies unto them, saying, Thus saith the Lord GOD, when the LORD hath not spoken.

If after you have done your due diligence and found that what you heard was written in God's Word, then you know with certitude that He has spoken it and only then can you "go with it"! Otherwise, be very wary of those who tell you God told them this or that!

So how do you tell a true "shepherd" from a look-alike "wolf". How do you tell one who is sent from God and one who isn't? John 3:34 "For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him." So take heed, for if you are one of His disciples you not only need to know how to tell the difference for yourself but also how to teach others to "beware of false prophets". To that end, Jesus Christ, the greatest teacher of all time, makes it very simple for us as He begins with an analogy of nature itself. Fruit! Hey, you simply test the "fruit" and then you will know what kind of tree it came from!

Matthew 7:16
Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?
The point is, the fruit that you "pluck" from a tree tells you what kind of tree it is and you know what else? If you can discern the fruit you don't even have to see the tree itself to know what kind it is, do you?
G2590 karpos kar-pos'
Probably from the base of G726; fruit (as plucked), literally or figuratively:— fruit.
[17] Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.
One of the very first lessons we learn in the Word of God is that there are two different trees from which one can obtain "fruit" to eat. However, one of them you need to beware of and stay away from.
Genesis 2:9
And out of the ground made the LORD God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life (Jesus) also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil (Satan).

Genesis 2:17
But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

Both the Tree of Life, who is Jesus Christ, and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, who is Satan, were in the midst of the garden. Yes, the story from the beginning, which is a matter of life and death, is to make sure you do not eat from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil unless you want to lose your spiritual virginity in like manner as Eve lost her physical virginity to the old serpent, who is Satan, the devil (Rev. 12:9), the false messiah, the fake (other) Jesus, the corrupt tree that shall be hewn down and cast into the lake of fire. To wit, false prophets stem from that false tree and the Jesus they preach is not our Jesus but "another one" (see below), the false one, the false messiah. Paul warned us about this same thing:
2 Cor. 11:2-4
For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ.

[3] But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.

[4] For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.

Paul was concerned that some might put up with those who preach "another Jesus". Don't receive spirits (doctrines) without first testing the fruit... which is what Christ is explaining to us.
Matthew 7:18
A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.
Remember, in the Bible Trees are symbolic of and represent people!
Jesus Christ, the Word of God, is that good tree, the Tree of Life. Satan, the other Jesus who is preached, is the corrupt tree and no good fruit can come from him. And Satan's ministers who only appear as messengers of righteousness, even as Satan appeared to Eve as a knowledgeable one who could explain what God really meant when He said "Thou shalt surely die!", also often misquote the Word of God or twist it to conform to the traditions of men. What shall their end be?
2 Cor. 11:14-15
And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.

[15] Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.

Their end is this:
Matthew 7:19
Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
Such is the fate that awaits the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil which deceives the whole world. Rev. 20:10 "And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone...". Again, how do you tell the difference between the holy tree and the profane tree?  Test the fruit of the tree with the fruit detector, the Word of God.After awhile, you'll notice there really are a lot of fruitcakes running around.
[20] Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
Isn't that a very simple thing? When you listen to a tree and you pluck the fruit from it, squeeze the fruit by checking it out in God's Word before you eat itThen you will know if it comes from the Tree of Life or the poisonous Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.

In other words, if what you have plucked are nothing but the traditions of men, like stories about snakes and apples, and rapture theories, and Easter bunnies, etc., then you are barking up the wrong tree!



Question from the Editor: Does your church teach and/or celebrate these things?  If so, why do you continue to attend that church?


Again, be very careful and take heed! Just because someone calls himself or herself or his or her work "Christian" doesn't make it so anymore than calling the Federal Reserve Bank "Federal" makes it part of our federal government for it is NOT! It is privately owned. Are you beginning to get the picture? Since Christ said that there would be MANY false prophets in this final generation who come in His name saying that He is Christ, i.e. that "Jesus is Lord", "Praise the Lord", "Hallelujah", then MANY of the professed Christian ministers and preachers you see and hear today are fake and are feeding our people BAD FRUIT! Do you think they all please Jesus Christ?
[21] Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
They come in his name and do everything but His will! They use His name (Christian) to teach, but they do not teach His Word chapter by chapter and verse by verse, but rather teach the traditions of men. They do all sorts of good deeds but they do not do the work which their Father has ordained for the sons and daughters of this final generation, and that is to seek and understand the visions, i.e. His Word, and prophesy (teach) His Word to the true House of Israel. They claim to cast out devils and some even go so far as to knock people down on stage in the name of Jesus and yet the people who have followed them for years and years, who by now ought to be teachers themselves (Heb. 5:12), are still as Biblically illiterate as ever.
[22] Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
"In that day" is the day of Christ's return! "Woe to the foolish prophets... (Ezek. 13:3)!"
[23] And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
"Iniquity" is anomia in Greek (Strong's #458) which means transgression of the law, the Word of God. They lead our people astray by substituting church and a form of worship instead of teaching the Word of God chapter by chapter and verse by verse.Christ never knew these Christians because they never knew Him. They never came to Him, to the Word of God, and got to know Him.

You see, one who says he or she knows Jesus Christ, the Living Word of God, and yet is ignorant of the Written Word of God, is a foolish person indeed!

So we have been WARNED by Jesus Christ Himself that we must beware of the many false prophets in this generation and INFORMED that not all who call themselves Christian are going to make it into the kingdom of heaven.

Now it is decision time! Do you have "ears to hear" what Christ has taught on the mount, from on high? Which path, the broad or the narrow, are you going to follow in building up the house of God?

[24] Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
Therefore in conclusion... whosoever hears (with understanding) these sayings of Jesus Christ, the Word of God, and DOETH them, is a WISE MAN!
James 1:22
But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.
Jesus Christ, the Word of God, is the Rock upon which the wise stand and that Rock is unmovable (Psalm 62:6).
Matthew 7:25
And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat* upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
Christ is referring to the period of the great tribulation the false-christ in the final generation of the fig tree when the flood of his lies spew forth as a flood and the four winds blow upon the earth.
Rev. 12:15
And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood.

water = G5204  hudor hudatos  hoo'-dor,hoo'-dat-os,etc.
From the base of G5205; water (as if rainy) literally or figuratively:—water.

Again, that "Rock" is Jesus Christ Himself and our people are becoming less and less mindful of Him, i.e. of the Word of God. Deut. 32:18 "Of the Rock that begat thee thou art unmindful, and hast forgotten God that formed thee."

* Note: It is interesting that the Greek word for "beat" in Mat. 7:25 (# 4363, prospipto) is a much stronger word than the Greek word for "beat" in Mat. 7:27 (#4350, proskopto).The "wise" who are firmly founded upon the Rock can withstand a much greater pounding than the "foolish" who have no foundation upon which to stand. You see, it doesn't take much for the Big Bad Wolf to huff and puff and blow their houses down.

Matthew 7:26
And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
[27] And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.
The great fall is called the "apostasy" by the apostle Paul in 2 Thes. 2:3. When Satan, that old serpent the dragon, is cast out of heaven to this earth at the sound of the 6th Trump, the spiritual onslaught will hit from all directions.

Notice that the rain comes from above, the floods from the foundation and winds from all four sides.

winds = #G417 anemos an'-em-os
From the base of G109; wind; (plural) by implication (the four) quarters (of the earth):—wind.
Paul also tells us in that 2nd chapter of 2nd Thes. why the majority of Christians will fall in the great apostasy:
2 Thes. 2:10
And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
They liked listening to superpreachers and hearing them tell them fairy tales about flying away in some Rapturemobile when the spurious messiah comes, instead of taking the time to test the fruit by studying their Father's Word and becoming "sealed" with the knowledge of His truth in their foreheads.
Matthew 7:28
And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine:
People today are also often amazed when they hear a true teacher of God's Word teach boldly after the manner of "Thus saith the Lord" and "It is written". If you noticed, not once did Christ go around the group of disciples and ask them what this verse or that verse meant to them. It doesn't matter what man thinks it means, but rather what the Word of God actually has to say!
[29] For He taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.
The Divine authority that Christ continually taught with were the words His Father gave Him, i.e. the Word of God (John 14:10). Christ often said "It is written" or "Haven't you read?"  How do the scribes teach? They teach the writings of the rabbis, the words of men, which is called the Talmud.

In Christian circles you could call them "quarterlies".

In conclusion to this study, let us all ask ourselves just how "wise" are we and let us take heed to our Father's words in the last two verses of the book titled "Salvation", which is "Hosea" in Hebrew, as He likens Himself to a green fir tree:

Hosea 14:8-9
Ephraim shall say, What have I to do any more with idols? I have heard him, and observed him: I am like a green fir tree. From me is thy fruit found.
All one has to do is understand the symbology and this verse and what our Father is saying becomes very clear. "Ephraim" was the largest of the 10 ten tribes of the House of Israel and is put forth here in a figure of speech to represent the whole. "Idols" are just that... the iniquitous teaching and whoring after the traditions of men. And a "green fir tree" is an evergreen tree which is symbolic of everlasting life. Are you one of the wise who knows what tree from which to obtain fruit and what "substance" to build the foundation of your house upon? Or will you be among the multitudes who follow the transgressors, the workers and teachers of the iniquitous doctrines of men (Mat. 7:23)? The choice is yours, so become a fruit tester and choose only the Tree of Life from which to obtain fruit. Your salvation depends upon it!
[9]Who is wise, and he shall understand these things? prudent, and he shall know them? for the ways of the LORD are right, and the just shall walk in them: but the transgressors shall fall therein.
Who is wise?

To study the Bible is the noblest of all pursuits; to understand it, the highest of all goals.
We pray that with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, you accomplish both.



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