Jesus Commandments

Posted: 21st September 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship
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9. The Command “Do not take revenge.”

38 “You have heard the law that says the punishment must match the injury: ‘An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.’ 39 But I say, do not resist an evil person! If someone slaps you on the right cheek, offer the other cheek also. 40 If you are sued in court and your shirt is taken from you, give your coat, too. 41 If a soldier demands that you carry his gear for a mile, carry it two miles. 42 Give to those who ask, and don’t turn away from those who want to borrow. Matthew 5:38 (NLT)

Many times when we have been injured our immediate attitude and response seeks justice. But, at what cost? Jesus is commanding us here to change our hearts from the bitterness of revenge to the kindness of charity. We live in a broken world. We will reap what we sow. There is no escaping the repercussions of sin. Sooner or later bewildering calamity will happen. How will you respond to a slap in the face? An unexpected law suit? Or forced, unwarranted labor?

Jesus’s command is simple! Return kindness for evil, extraordinary giving for theft, and love for injury. There is only one Judge and it’s not us. He will righteously settle all unresolved accounts. And the payment for these debts is terrible and eternal. Shouldn’t we be showing mercy and love in our injury? We know that unless our debtors receive Christ as their Savior, their eternal souls are bound for Hell. They may stimulate their pride at the expense of our sore cheek. They may gain a little more wardrobe material. They may live a little longer at the expense of our hard labor. But Jesus says this in Matthew 16:26 “And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul?” (NLT)

Christ was slapped in the face, beard-pulled, humiliated, and forced to wear a crown of thorns, disrobed and publically beaten (scourged), burdened to carry the instrument of his demise to the site of his execution, then crucified, naked, laid bare for all to see – and he sought no revenge. He prayed for his debtors’ forgiveness.

Jesus Commandments

Posted: 31st August 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship

8. The Command to “Keep Your Word”

33 “You have also heard that our ancestors were told, ‘You must not break your vows; you must carry out the vows you make to the Lord.’ 34 But I say, do not make any vows! Do not say, ‘By heaven!’ because heaven is God’s throne. 35 And do not say, ‘By the earth!’ because the earth is his footstool. And do not say, ‘By Jerusalem!’ for Jerusalem is the city of the great King. 36 Do not even say, ‘By my head!’ for you can’t turn one hair white or black. 37 Just say a simple, ‘Yes, I will,’ or ‘No, I won’t.’ Anything beyond this is from the evil one.” (Matthew 5:33-38. NLT)

The mark of Christian integrity and of true Christian character is keeping our word. Too many times we over extend ourselves with the intent of being helpful – later to find, that it was at the detriment of our character. We must pray for wisdom before making any vows or giving our word in commitment to any agreement.

There are 2 vows that must be faithfully maintained throughout the challenges and temptations of life. When we say “I do” at the marriage altar, it is a Holy, sacred, lifelong covenant. More importantly, your eternal vow to Christ as Lord of your life is the greatest.

Do not make promises you cannot keep. Only agree to things you know you can fulfill through the grace and power of Jesus Christ.

Jesus Commandments

Posted: 24th August 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship
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7. The Command “Do Not Lust”

“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell. (Matthew 5:27-30, NIV).

The sin of the heart is the most deceitful. It lies hidden in personal darkness building momentum – unless it is captured by the power of the Holy Spirit and confessed openly to Christ. King David’s lust for Bathsheba serves as a great example. It developed into deceit, covetousness, adultery, and eventually murder. Not to mention, an innocent child dying as the result of his lust-driven actions.

We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ. (2 Corinthians 10:5, NLT)

Jesus Commandments

Posted: 17th August 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship

6. The Command to “Settle Matters Quickly”

“Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is taking you to court. Do it while you are still together on the way, or your adversary may hand you over to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you may be thrown into prison.” (Matthew 5:25, NIV).

I believe Christ was telling the lost to “get right with God quickly!” Remember, in this scripture Jesus is teaching a crowd of people from the side of a mountain. These people were coming to learn about the Kingdom of Heaven from the Master. Unlike us, they did not have the Cross of Grace, the Holy Bible, and 2000 years of Christendom to look back upon. Jesus was speaking to them with eternal wisdom. They could only reference His teachings with temporal, 1st century minds. By believing in Christ, they were choosing the Way, the Life, and the Truth. By choosing Jesus, they would settle matters quickly.

“For God says, “At just the right time, I heard you. On the day of salvation, I helped you.” Indeed, the “right time” is now. Today is the day of salvation.” (2 Corinthians 6:2, NLT)

The scripture in Matthew 5:25 is also related to Christ’s previous command to “be reconciled.” Moreover, it could apply to how we should deal with our adversaries from a business sense — not just as a family one. Still, is Jesus giving us greater insight and wisdom on our dealings with the secular world? If you owe someone, do justly! Settle the matter quickly and with Christian integrity. Don’t rush into any business transactions without prayerful guidance and trusting in God. Humility is always the attitude of the God-fearing soul. “God lifts the humble.”

Immediate repentance is required to “settle matters quickly” with God. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9)

Jesus Commandments

Posted: 10th August 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship
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5. The Command to “Be Reconciled”
“Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.” (Matthew 5:23-24)

When we harbor anger or resentment of any kind in our hearts, or know that we have offended someone, or even suspect that someone in the family of Christ has “something” against us, our offering of praise is worthless. Our worship of Jesus is distracted and disingenuous. (1 John 3:15, Isaiah 1:14) It is when we put others before ourselves, we are worshiping Jesus. We must be reconciled with each other for our hearts to be free to focus on the only One worthy of our praise.

Jesus said, “But the time is coming—indeed it’s here now—when true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth. The Father is looking for those who will worship him that way. For God is Spirit, so those who worship him must worship in spirit and in truth.” (John 4:23-24, NLT)

Jesus Commandments

Posted: 2nd August 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship
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4. The Command to “Shine”
“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16)

We do not have a “works-based” faith. We are saved by Christ’s grace alone – “so no one can boast.” But, Jesus clearly says that the good works we do (by the Holy Spirit) bring glory to God. It is the very reason He gave us life. And it will continue to be our everlasting life’s work. We are not to cower in solitude and be comfortable by worldly standards, but by His grace and power shine to a lost and broken world.

Jesus Commandments

Posted: 27th July 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship

3. The Command to “Rejoice”
“Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you” (Matthew 5:11–12).

“The crown of martyrdom has been thought to be the brightest that any of the redeemed shall wear…” (Albert Barnes) Following our Lord’s commands are difficult, some more at times than others, nonetheless, Jesus’s command to “rejoice” in the midst of suffering and trials is very challenging. It is easy to rejoice on the mountaintop of praise and thanksgiving, but quite another thing to rejoice in the valley of despair. Learning to truly follow this command means to be completely surrendered to His Lordship – no matter what the cost! It is a journey that will cost you your life.

Jesus Commandments

Posted: 24th July 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship
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2. The Command to “Follow”
“Jesus called out to them, “Come, follow me, and I will show you how to fish for people!” (NLT, Matthew 4:19).

Once we truly repent and throw off the shackles of pride and self-reliance, we must choose to follow Christ. It is a day to day, sometimes minute to minute, continuous struggle between the old self and the new, reborn self. In Matthew 16, “… Jesus said to his disciples, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me. “ (Matthew 16:24)

What Would Jesus Do? (WWJD)” becomes our motto. Not merely a pithy slogan, it becomes the real guiding criteria by which we base all of our choices and decisions.

Jesus Commandments

Posted: 18th July 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship
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1. The Command to “Repent”
“From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matthew 4:17)

We all must repent to be part of the Kingdom of Heaven. In our Lord’s Prayer (Matt 6:9), Jesus teaches us that our deepest prayer need is for us to change. Repentance in the starting point of that journey. We need to stop praising ourselves and know that our Heavenly Father is holy. We need to get down from our thrones and put Jesus in His rightful place in our lives. We need to forget our selfish agendas and schedules, be emptied of self, so that God’s will can be done in and through us.

In Galatians 5, Paul says we cannot inherit the Kingdom of Heaven, if we do not live by the Holy Spirit’s power to lead and guide our actions. Pastor Rick Warren said this about our choices in life, “we either do God things or selfish things.” We live in a “sin-broken” world. We are affected by it everyday. We must surrender “our will” to allow the Holy Spirit to empower our lives. In King David’s awesome testimony of repentance he cries “The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit. You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God.” (Psalm 51:17) We must repent to love Jesus.

Jesus said, “If ye love me, keep my commandments” (John 14:15). Jesus left his disciples with this final commandment. We call it the “Great Commission.”, “Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age. (Matthew 28:19-2, NLT) Jesus said Go! Make disciples of all nations, baptize them, and teach them “His commandments.”

Starting with the Book of Matthew, it is written that after Jesus commanded John to baptize Him, he was led into the dessert. From His temptations we learned that Jesus proclaimed “God is our provider. He is Holy and He is sovereign over all.” One could argue that Christ’s responses to Satan’s temptations in the dessert were His commandments. In my generalized summary of Christ’s responses, I believe Christ’s first response was “to live by faith in God.” His second response was “to trust in God’s word.” And His last response was “to worship God alone.” We are tempted in in the same way as Christ. There is no temptation we can not overcome, if we know His word. When Jesus returned from the desert He began His ministry and declared the favor of the Lord and His words are the food by which all Christians truly live and worship. I believe the most important of all His commands was given in John 13:34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” I believe if we all could just get our heads around that one, God’s Kingdom would come and His will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

Keeping the commands of Jesus begins with recognizing and knowing them. The following are a collection of Jesus’ commands (taken directly from the Bible’s “Red Letters”, various translations) are presented, as best as I can manage, in New Testament order. My main goal is to help you along your worship journey with Christ. As you read through Christ’s quoted commandments, pray for God to help you understand, observe and obey them throughout your life.