Pastor Dan started us off with a devotion through Galatians 1.
- The gospel must be guarded and protected. This chapter (letter) helps puts into perspective how important the gospel is. Anything that takes away from the truth of the gospel is a false gospel. If we buckle on the foundation of the gospel, then we’ve lost it!
- The gospel is powerful to save. It even saved a man like Paul, who greatly persecuted the church and killed many in the faith.
- Sometimes we may think that some people are impossible to save, but we should not think this way! If we do, we discredit the saving power of the gospel.
This week we recited Matthew 5:27-32 together and entered into a time of discussion through this passage.
- In verse 32, why does Jesus say that only the woman being divorced commits adultery?
- Jesus already explained in verse 5:28 that the man has already committed adultery in his heart.
- What the Pharisees were teaching and practicing was that a man could divorce anyone he wanted for any reason (even for burning his breakfast!); he just had to follow the formalities of the law given by Moses (Deuteronomy 24).
- In those days, adulterers were guilty of capital punishment (i.e. stoning), but under Roman law, they were not freely able to execute people as they would if they were exclusively under Jewish law.
- As a result, the culture became desensitized to the seriousness of the sin of adultery. This encouraged the Pharisees to freely divorce their wives for the purpose of marrying other women they desired instead.
- But Jesus explains that the one who makes his wife commit adultery is then to be considered the worse of the two parties, as he not only already committed adultery, but also is the cause of sin committed among all of the people involved.
- Futhermore, Jesus teaches that there is absolutely no cause for divorce except for the the reason of unchastity (immorality). So except for this one reason, divorce is never an option for a Christian.
- This should give us a resolve to always seek to work out issues that arise within our marriages!
- It is essential to create hedges to help guard our hearts, our purity, and our marriages.
- The right eye and hand were considered the dominant of their pairs of body parts, and thus considered the most valuable.
- The issue of and struggle against purity doesn’t begin when something lewd flashes before our eyes – it begins in our minds!
- Setting hedges is critical and practical to preclude and protect ourselves from the potential for adultery.
- However, setting hedges (physical, situational, etc.) is not adequate to protect ourselves from sin. What God wants for us is to have pure hearts.
- Fill your mind with God’s truth and His holiness. This sanctifies our minds and leaves no room for straying, sinful thoughts.
- It is interesting that Jesus brings up the matter of hell in this passage. Why does He bring it up?
- Jesus begins the Sermon on the Mount by speaking to His disciples, but ends up preaching to large crowds.
- Ultimately, the point Jesus is driving across in all of the points in His sermon is that everyone needs repentance and faith in order to escape hell and punishment for sins.
Next week’s passage for memorization is Matthew 5:33-42.
- Rotation for watching children during Homegroups
- Organizing a structured, separate activity for the children during the last homegroup was a success and an encouragement for the body. Therefore, we will continue breaking up into separate groups for children and adults during homegroups. A volunteer rotation was set up for leading and monitoring the children during the large group discussions.