Week 34 Day 6
Finding God in the Mysteries of every day
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Matthew 5: 33 “Again you have heard that it was said to those of [old, ‘You shall not swear falsely, but shall perform your oaths to the Lord.’ 34 But I say to you, do not swear at all: neither by heaven, for it is God’s throne; 35 nor by the earth, for it is His footstool; nor by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great King. 36 Nor shall you swear by your head, because you cannot make one hair white or black. 37 But let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No.’ For whatever is more than these is from the evil one.
The word “dissemble” has fallen into disuse in these days largely because people are painfully aware that circumstances change more rapidly than they could ever predict, and they want to keep their options open. So, when push comes to shove and an “oath” is required, for example in court, assuming public office, joining the military, getting married, etc. people have little regard for the words they have spoken in oath taking or promising.
Jesus lives among us beyond the bounds of human requirements. He swears no oaths, He doesn’t need to. He is so innately honest that if He says something, He will do whatever He says. This is a high standard. It is a standard that we cannot live up to without the help and strength of the Holy Spirit.
My dad was a man of his word. He was of a type consistent with his generation, honest, strong, and self-sufficient, but even he could not “perform perfectly”. Jesus can. He “knew all men” (John 2:24). Perhaps Jesus understood the many ways in which a word said can be misinterpreted. A promise made unwisely or for the wrong motives can come back to haunt us.