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Don't be angry with your brother

Jul 25, 2015 01:37 AM EDT

Matthew 5:21-26

5:21 "You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, 'Do not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.'

5:22 But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to his brother, 'Raca,' is answerable to the Sanhedrin. But anyone who says, 'You fool!' will be in danger of the fire of hell.

5:23 "Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you,

5:24 leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift.

5:25 "Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is taking you to court. Do it while you are still with him on the way, or he may hand you over to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you may be thrown into prison.

5:26 I tell you the truth, you will not get out until you have paid the last penny.

From verse 21, Jesus said about the laws and its antitheses. The commandments count over 600, but then Jesus summarized them and picked six among them, and then presented its antithesis. Among the six antitheses, the first is not to be angry.

"'Do not murder" is the Sixth Commandment which is the most basic among the laws. It is the most serious sin to take one's life. However, Jesus said here "anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to his brother, 'Raca,' is answerable to the Sanhedrin. But anyone who says, 'You fool!' will be in danger of the fire of hell". It means, anyone who hates his brother and reveal anger and abuse will receive God's wrath though he didn't kill him. Laws punish when there is sin outwardly uncovered, but the word of the Lord observes the sin in heart. This is more strict law.

Is there any hatred and judgment in us? It is rather better to argue and resolve the conflict than hate or judge others secretly. If we pretend not to have any hatred, envy, this is hypocrisy. If there is any hidden thing, it must cause a problem.

So Jesus said "first go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift" before worshiping God. Worship is to come to God and reconcile with God. We want to know His love in order to reconcile with our brothers ultimately by realizing His love. So it is wrong if we discord with others. The love between brothers is more important than the sacrifice. Hosea 6:6 says God desires mercy, not sacrifice.

Let us look back on our hearts if there is any hatred or discord, and then burn any shape of sinful heart so that we can offer the sacrifice of mercy every day.