You have heard that it was said to your ancestors," You shall not kill; and whoever kills wil be liable to judgement." But I say to you, whoever is angry with his brother will be liable to judgement, and whoever says to his brother," Raqa" will be answerable to the Sanhedrin, and whoever says,"You fool," will be liable to firey Gehenna. Therefore, if you bring your gift to the altar, and there recall that your brother has anything against you, leave your gift there at the altar, go first and be reconciled with your brother, and then come and offer your gift. Settle with your opponent quickly while on the way to court with him. Otherwise your opponent will hand you over to the judge, and the judge will hand you over to the guard, and you will be thrown into prison. Amen, I say to you, you will not be released until you have paid the last penny. Matt. 5: 21-26. 

The next six examples of conduct Jesus gives, all deal with personal relationships. These are not suggestions, these are commandments. "You have heard it was said," is what the letter of the law taught. "But I say to you," is the intent of what the law taught. And no better teacher we could have than God Himself.

The sin is murder. To kill. I think we can all understand and agree with that.We could also open up a whole other can of worms here but, for the sake of this lesson, we'll continue with the main point. If you murdered someone or killed someone purposely, then you faced the death penalty in Old Testement Law. Other restitution was made in cases of accidents but, you would face the death penalty for willfully killing someone. But listen to what Jesus teaches " Whoever is angry with his brother, will be liable to the judgement,"


Anger is the root to the sin of murder therefore, anger is sin. And look where it originates, in the heart. As the anger escalates, the insults become more vicious and the sin of murder starts to become a justifiable solution. See James 1: 14-15.

The punishment also escalates in each case and ends in the "firey Gehenna."

Therefore, if you bring your gift to the altar and recall your brother has anything against you… 

Reconcilation with our brother is a must before we can worship. Have you had trouble worshipping lately, and can't put your finger on why? Does your brother have anything against you? Take the steps you need to take to get right with your brother and then come to worship God.

 As disciples, we have to come to God on His terms, and Jesus gives us the picture of what not reconciling with your brother will look like. We won't be released from prison until we've paid the last penny.


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