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Summary of sermon by Erlo Stegen, 23 June 2013
31 And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.
32 For if ye love them which love you, what thank have ye? for sinners also love those that love them.
33 And if ye do good to them which do good to you, what thank have ye? for sinners also do even the same.
34 And if ye lend to them of whom ye hope to receive, what thank have ye? for sinners also lend to sinners, to receive as much again.
35 But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil.
36 Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.
37 Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven:
38 Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.
Even a small child can understand these words of the Lord Jesus. It's not complicated at all. Anyone with a soft heart can understand this. This is the standard for us as Christians. Jesus shows us what kind of a life we ought to live. On the day of judgement none of us will have an excuse because He makes His will clear in this text.
Each one ought to examine his or her life whether it's in accordance with what we've just read. Is your life in keeping with this which the Lord Jesus had said. If not then you must be ashamed and grieve and weep tears with a broken heart. If your life is not like this it means you have a hardened heart, dead spiritually, rejected as God's child. Unless you repent before the Lord you will be a castaway. If you say you're on your way to heaven, a child of God, yet don't live in accordance to this word, then you're a hypocrite.
In Hebrews we read, "without holiness no one will see the Lord". (Hebrews 12:14)
It is in vain that you go to church, take the Lord's supper etc., yet don't live a holy life. Then you are rejected.
Each of us must strive to sanctify ourselves, and live for God even in a crooked and depraved generation. Live before God at all times, that God be always before our eyes.
In this text God paints a picture before our eyes, how He wants us, His children, to be in holiness and godly love!
If you realise your life fall short and you haven't reached that which He expects from you, then you need to humble yourself before Him. Do you know that humility of heart? Ask Him for mercy to save you and change you, that you become that which He expects you to be, no matter if you were raised in a Christian home or not. Woe if you do not obey this.
This is the standard of life the Lord Jesus expects from us. He is able to sanctify and save us to the uttermost!
In Peter we read, "be ye holy as I am holy". (1Pet 1:15-16)
No longer conform to your lusts you once had in your ignorance.
So much is said about human rights, but this is our right received from God, to live a holy life in all our conduct, and woe to us if we do it not.
No matter where you come from and what language or culture or country you come from, this holiness is God's requirement of your life. We've been created in God's image and saved by Him, so this is our right to live this holy life.
Many people profess to keep this life but only a fraction do it. Among a hundred who profess to truly live this life you'll probably not even find ten who really do it.
Why? Why is it that people's lives, their deeds, are not in keeping with God's word. The reason is that their hearts cling to the things of this world and they forget heaven for which they've been created.
The things of this world pass away quickly, and even young people die. Woe if you're found in this state and your whole life is not for the glory of God.
In stead of holding on to Jesus many cling to the things of this world and are therefore rejected!
What does Jesus mean to you? If He isn't everything to you and you regard the things of this world highly, then you're a fool in the sight of God. If you should stand before God right now, and satan is there too, who would own you?
If we live the word in this text, then paradise would come to us here on earth. Earth would become like heaven. Don't just consider your own things but consider other people too.
In our text we see that Jesus taught us to live above the standard of this world which always do things with self in mind. He requires a much higher standard from His children.
Maybe you don't receive anything because you yourself aren't generous. But Jesus said that if you are generous men will give the same to you, a good measure, pressed down and running over. As you desire others do to you, do you so to them.
Remember your heavenly right, to live a holy life.
Ask your wife, husband and children whether these words of the Lord Jesus are true in your life.