Footnotes

6:1: NU reads “acts of righteousness” instead of “charitable giving”

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Matthew 5:38-48 – Jesus reveals the heart of God

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Notes for parents and guardians

Are you trapped in accusation?

In today’s reading, Jesus warned us not to be like the hypocrites who do their charity acts to be seen by people. Actually, in this world, there are many who are victims of such hypocrites. There are many children who grew up being accused of things they did not do. The accusers could be older siblings or even teachers, guardians and parents. These children who do not know how to reason things out to defend themselves, grew up confused, believing they were at fault.  They thirst for justice and often felt that they are not good enough, or have not done well enough. They crave for people’s approval and would not even have the courage to defend themselves. As a result, they accept abusive relationships thinking that it is normal. Very often, they enter into relationships/marriages with people who are hypocrites.

 

One of the most difficult group of people to deal with in life are the “hypocrites”. These people have a network that supports them. They do their charity openly, speak and behave as if they are very friendly, generous, harmless and kind hearted people. However, deep in them, they may have some obsessive behavior that they cannot control themselves. They prey on weak victims to satisfy their obsessive needs.  For fear of being discovered, they often create stories and situations to make other people believe that their victims are the ones who could not be trusted. If you happen to be the spouse and victim of such hypocrites, you will find yourself trapped in a prison of accusation. You may even believe you are bad. The accusation and torments that such victims suffer can sometimes last for years, even after they leave the hypocrites.

 

In this scripture (Matthew 6:1-4), it is very clear that God knows who are the hypocrites. God sees everything done in secret. These hypocrites will not get any reward from God. In fact, they may not even enter the kingdom of heaven because Jesus said that unless our righteousness exceeds that of the Pharisees, otherwise, we will not enter the kingdom of heaven (Matthew 5:20). Jesus called the Pharisees hypocrites. If you are a victim of such hypocrites, do not despair because great is your reward (Matthew 5:12). God has great plans for your lives. Jesus promised that those who thirst for justice shall be satisfied (Matthew 5:6) and those who mourn shall be comforted (Matthew 5:4). Seek the LORD for the Kingdom of heaven is yours (Matthew 5:3). Keep your hearts pure and believe that the LORD is with you(Matthew 5:8). Miracles will happen for you.

Truths about God

Get to know the Creator of this universe

In this reading, there are only 4 verses (Matthew 6:1-4). Yet, in these 4 verses, Jesus revealed the 4 most important truths relating to our Christian life. If you remember these 4 truths and let every decision and every action in your life be governed by these 4 truths, your life will be filled with power and victory:

Get to know God

In this reading, there are only 4 verses (Matthew 6:1-4). Yet, in these 4 verses, Jesus revealed the 4 most important truths relating to our Christian life. If you remember these 4 truths and let every decision and every action in your life be governed by these 4 truths, your life will be filled with power and victory:

1. You are a beloved child of God Most High, Creator of this universe

Since the moment Jesus began to preach this sermon on hte Mount of Beatitudes (Matthew 5:1) to this scripture (Matthew 6:1), this is the 4th time Jesus said that God is our Father in heaven. Meditate on this truth. Since the God Most High is your Father, and He is a perfect Father, will your Father allow anyone to bully and accuse you, who is His beloved child? Will your Father in heaven not avenge you and let your enemies triumph over you? Will your Father in heaven not provide for you? Surely goodness and mercies will follow you all the days of your life (Psalms 23:6).

2. Our Father in heaven desires to reward us.

Many of us work hard to achieve some prizes or rewards that will come from organisations (schools, companies, world organisations, etc.) that we can see. However, few of us work for the rewards that will come from God. In Matthew 6:1, Jesus revealed that our Father in heaven will reward us when we sincerely help those in need (Matthew 6:1) and when we pray and fast (Matthew 6:6). Do you know that when Jesus come again in glory, He will reward us according to our  deeds (Matthew 16:27, NKJV)? Now that you know that God will reward us, how would you spend your time?

3. Our Father in heaven sees even the things done in secret

In this physical world that we live in, we do not see God. Because people in this physical world cannot see God, we have a tendency to think that God does not exist or even if He exists, He may not know the details of what people are doing. This is completely untrue. God sees every details, everything that a person does. He sees the things that are done in secret, behind our back. He knows everything.

4. Our Father in heaven loves those whose heart are pure

God is not impressed with people who are intelligent and capable. God is able to use the foolish to shame the wise (1 Corinthians 1:26-29). To those who scheme their way to success and popularity, Jesus called them “hypocrites” (Matthew 6:2, 6:5, 6:16, 15:7, 22:18, 23:13, 15, 23, 27, 29, Mark 7:6,  Luke 13:15). What is the use of being considered great by human beings but is a hypocrite in the eyes of God? Jesus tells us that blessed are the pure at heart for they shall see God (Matthew 5:8).

think about itHow would you live your life?

God’s heart is for the fatherless, the widows, the weak, the sick, the blind, the broken hearted, the opressed, the homeless, the outcast.  God is a compassionate God who loves His people. Now that you understand that the God Most High, Creator of this universe, who loves you dearly as your Father, who desires to reward you, and has the power to do what He promise, what would you seek in life?