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Sermons about Oaths
Sunday Sermon by Eddie Mayes - 9/2/2012
As we look to the second half of this section of the Sermon on the Mount, we hear Christ calling us to honesty, to meekness, and to love. Christ teaches us about the taking of oaths, about personal vengeance, and about loving our enemies.
A popular pastor once noted: “So much of business, politics, government, the educational system, science, religion, and even family life is built on falsehoods and half-truths that a sudden revelation of the whole truth would cause society as we know it to disintegrate. It would be too devastating to handle.” The recent discovery of e-mails that uncover intentional misrepresentation (i.e. Lies) of some among the science community in relation to the supposed global warming illustrate this - as do a thousand other things in media & politics. It should not surprise us that lying & deception is at the heart of our depravity, for it was at the very entry point of sin into humanity. Satan is a liar, and the Lord tells us: “Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies” (John 8:44) - therefore it’s no surprise that his children are marked by the same. People lie for a variety of reasons: fear, gain, avoid trouble; so on. Even still, all of us recognize the need for and importance of truth, we just - as a fallen people - seem to have a hard time telling it. And so, it is the issue of truthfulness that the Lord will address this morning (Matt. 5:33-37). He is going to do that in 2 ways: (1) confront the hypocrisy of frivolous oaths; (2) command truthful speech, so His people would know true righteousness is marked by honest & trustworthy speech
Jesus now tackles how the Scribes and Pharisees had corrupted the Law's teaching on oaths and vows. Like sinful people, they obscured the truth through word games to hide their deceit. Jesus died because of our lies, and works to make us a community of honest people.