Matthew Lesson 6 Day 4

Matthew Lesson 6 Day 2,Matthew Lesson 6 Day 3,Matthew Lesson 6 Day 4, Matthew Lesson 6 Day 5

Matthew Lesson 6 Day 4

Marriage, divorce, adultery, and taking oaths

Matthew 5:31-37

The Pharisees continue to defend the loopholes they’ve created concerning the Law.

9a) Jesus said Moses allowed divorce due to the hardness of mans’ heart.

As Jesus continues to teach the crowds, some Pharisees came to test him. They asked, “Can a husband divorce his wife?”

The Pharisees interpreted Deuteronomy 24:1-4 to say that a man could divorce his wife for any reason simply by giving her a written notice. “Some rabbis taught this even extended to allowing a man to divorce his wife if she burnt his breakfast.”1

b)  Jesus challenged this practice.

Marriage was God’s plan for the man and woman he created. He designed them to become one flesh and remain together for life. Jesus called remarriage after divorce adultery.

The Pharisees who wanted to make divorce easy had a loose interpretation of the word uncleanness in Deuteronomy 24:1. Jesus makes it clear that uncleanness refers only to sexual immorality.1

The Greek word translated sexual immorality “could include premarital unchastity, subsequently discovered.” (France)1

If the divorce is illegitimate in God’s eyes, then if either party enters into a new relationship, that party would be guilty of bigamy and therefore adultery.

Bigamy definition: “Literally, double marriage; remarriage during the existence of a former marriage; in law, the offense of having two or more wives or husbands at the same time.” (The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.)

10a) You shall not swear falsely.

The Pharisees had extensive rules about making religious vows, mainly to take advantage of others.

“The scribes and Pharisees had twisted the law You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain (Exodus 20:7) to permit taking virtually every other name in a false oath.1

Don’t swear at all.

“Jesus reminds us that God is part of every oath anyway; if you swear by heaven, earth, Jerusalem, or even your head, you swear by God – and your oath must be honored.1

If a person always tells the truth and keeps his promises, there would be no need to have specific rules that govern which ones we have to abide by.

“Our yes and no should be so trustworthy that we don’t have to embellish them (Matthew 5:37).”2

b)  We will give an account of the words that come out of our mouths.

Words have creative power. When God said, “Let there be light” (literally, “light be”), it was so. When Jesus said, “Take up your bed and walk,” the man responded in faith, and he was healed.

We shouldn’t speak words we don’t want to come to pass, such as, “I was worried sick,” or “You’ll catch your death of cold!”

My dad often said, “I’m going to end up in the poor house!” because he was always worried about money.

The worries, fears, anger, and resentment in our hearts sneak out of our mouths.

We use so many phrases like “I mean it.” Here are some of the others I’ve noticed:

  • Trust me…(That sends up a red flag every time I hear it.)
  • To be honest…(Very popular now)
  • To tell you the truth…(One person I know jokingly follows that statement with, “because I lied to you before”)
  • Believe it or not…
  • I swear…
  • …and that’s the truth!

The book of James speaks of how difficult it is to control our tongue. “But no one can tame the tongue; it is a restless evil and full of deadly poison.” James 3:8

Out of curiosity, I searched for references to “tongue” and “tongues” in the NASB via BibleGateway.com. There are 140.

Jesus reminds us that even though our words are important, we need our hearts fixed. Then our tongue will speak words of life.

c)  May the words of my mouth be acceptable in God’s sight.

That verse isn’t exactly what the question asked, but I believe it is the point.

Vows I’ve made in the past come to mind. It is no longer possible to keep some of them, and I doubt I can remember all of them. I repent for making vows, oaths, and promises and especially for not keeping them.

I made vows to the Lord back when I thought I should and mistakenly thought I could qualify myself for God’s love. Now I know He is the one who qualifies me through His blood sacrifice, and I intend to be careful to avoid making vows or oaths.


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1 EnduringWord.com used with written permission.
2 AWM Living Commentary used by written permission.
3 Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations from *The ESV Bible® (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®) copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
4 Strong’s Concordance, public domain.
5 *Spirit-Filled Life Bible®copyright © 1991 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. (The Holy Bible, New King James Bible) copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.
6 Ellicott’s Commentary, public domain.
7 Barnes’ Notes on the Bible, public domain.
8 The Names of God Bible (without notes) © 2011 by Baker Publishing Group.

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My answers, research, and notes for BSF Bible Study Fellowship questions Matthew Lesson 6 Day 4