In His Presence – January 12


Today’s Scripture:

Matthew 5:13-48



One comment on “In His Presence – January 12

  1. This was a big chunk of Scripture and probably I should have separated out 13-16. But, we are looking to learn more about Jesus’ personality, and, here, He’s still sitting on the mountain teaching His disciples.

    I learned a whole lot today about Jesus’ teaching style. He was an interesting speaking; using comparisons like the ones to salt and light. If you’ve ever heard a dry speaker, you know that there’s an art to communication. Clearly, Jesus is a very good communicator: interesting and thought provoking; He made you think.

    John Piper writes, “When we read, we do not generally really think until we are faced with a problem to be solved, a mystery to be unraveled, or a puzzle to be deciphered. Until our minds are challenged, and shift from passive reading to active reading, we drift right over lots of insights. Asking ourselves questions is a way of creating a problem or a mystery to be solved. That means the habit of asking ourselves questions awakens and sustains our thinking. It stimulates our mind while we read, and drives us down deep to the real meaning of a passage.” (Desiring God, Article: How to read the Bible for yourself. March 2015)

    Jesus is preparing the disciples to carry out the work of teaching and preaching after He’s gone. He wants to make sure they are correct in their understanding in the areas of: murder, adultery, divorce, oaths, retaliation, and love.

    “You’ve heard this, but let me clarify what this really means.”

    How often do we stop to examine what we’ve “heard” for years and find out what Jesus really says about it? I don’t mean some new revelation I mean dig into Scripture and find out what God intended.

    John Piper writes, “When we read, we want to know what an author intended us to see and experience in his writing. He had an intention when he wrote. Nothing will ever change that. It is there as a past, objective event in history. We are not reading simply for subjective experiences. We are reading to discover more about objective reality. I’m not content with what comes to my mind when I read it. The meaning of a sentence, or a word, or a letter is what the author intended for us to understand by it. Therefore, meaning is the first aim of all good reading.” (Desiring God, Article: How to read the Bible for yourself. March 2015)

    Here’s the link to the article referenced above entitled, “How to Read the Bible for Yourself,” by John Piper. A good read if you have time today.


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