一起读经 | 马太福音 5:43-6:4

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马太福音5:43-47

马太福音5:43你们听见有话说、『当爱你的邻舍、恨你的仇敌。』44只是我告诉你们:要爱你们的仇敌.为那逼迫你们的祷告。45这样,就可以作你们天父的儿子。因为他叫日头照好人,也照歹人;降雨给义人,也给不义的人。46你们若单爱那爱你们的人,有甚么赏赐呢?就是税吏不也是这样行么?47你们若单请你弟兄的安,比人有甚么长处呢?就是外邦人不也是这样行么?

我认为“当爱你的邻舍,恨你的仇敌”这句话出自某个希伯来语的作品,大家对这句话可能也很熟悉。但即使在犹太法典《塔木德》—也是最著名的希伯来语作品中,也完全没有提及法律要求我们一定要爱我们的仇敌。所以耶稣在这几句经文里所表达的意思,在他的那个时代是相当新奇的。

耶稣指出了这样完全的爱的来源。我们在天上的父每一天都在显示对他的敌人的爱。他降雨给他们,让太阳光照他们,他看顾他们正如他看顾他的儿女和选民。而且说这些话的主耶稣在十字架上还在祷告上帝原谅他的敌人。

我们应该如何实践上帝这种完全的爱?我们可以从为我们的敌人祷告开始。为那个在工作中惹你恼怒生气的人祷告。为那个已经不再和你说话的家庭成员祷告。为那个不同意你的政治观点的人祷告。为那个把你送上法庭的人祷告。为那个冒犯你的人祷告。也许他们的心仍然没有改变,但你的心会改变。

祷告:主耶稣啊,爱我的家人和朋友是容易的,但爱那些伤害过我的人,那些与我有不同意见的人是不那么容易的。我祷告我能以你的心为心,这颗心能对好人和歹人同样施以慈爱,这颗心甚至能为敌人献上祷告,阿们!

Matthew

Listen: Matthew 5:43-47 43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46 If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47 And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that?

I assume that the phrase, “Love your neighbor and hate your enemy,” comes from a rabbinical writing of some sort that people would have been familiar with. There is nothing at all in the Talmud, the most renowned of the rabbinical writings, that says the law requires us to love even our enemies. So what Jesus says in these verses is completely radical for his day.

Jesus points out the source of this radical love. Our Father in heaven shows love to his enemies every single day. He sends them rain. He causes the sun to rise on them. He provides for them in the same way that he provides for his children, his people. And of course, the Savior who spoke these words prayed that God would forgive his enemies from the cross.

How do we practice God’s radical sort of love? We can begin by praying for our enemies. Pray for the person at work who annoys you. Pray for the family member that won’t talk to you anymore. Pray for the people who don’t agree with your politics. Pray for the person who took you to court. Pray for the person who offended you. They may not have a change of heart, but you will.

Prayer:   Lord Jesus, it’s easy to love my family and my friends. It is not so easy to love those who have hurt me or who have disagreed with me. I pray that you would give me your heart, a heart that extends kindness to the good and evil alike, a heart that can pray even for my enemies.   Amen.

马太福音61-4 你好行为的动机是什么

听:马太福音6:1你们要小心,不可将善事行在人的面前,故意叫他们看见;若是这样,就不能得你们天父的赏赐了。6:2所以你施舍的时候,不可在你前面吹号,像那假冒为善的人在会堂里和街道上所行的,故意要得人的荣耀。我实在告诉你们:他们已经得了他们的赏赐。6:3你施舍的时候,不要叫左手知道右手所作的;6:4要叫你施舍的事行在暗中,你父在暗中察看,必然报答你。〔有古卷作必在明处报答你〕

什么时候善行根本算不上善行?是当你行善的时候,只不过是为了得到别人的夸奖,希望别人能够看到你有多么的慷慨大方。保罗在罗马书第七章中写道:“我也知道,住在我里面的,就是我肉体之中,没有善。”(罗马书7:18)我的罪性影响我做的所有事。这就是为什么圣经说我所行的义就像污秽的衣服。当我给路上的乞丐施舍时,我的罪性就赞许地拍拍我的肩;当我给教会奉献时,我的罪性又赞许地拍拍我的肩。对于非信徒或者假冒为善的人,得到别人的赞许是他们慷慨大方的最主要(如果不是唯一)动机,因为这能让他们自我感觉良好。

但是对于信徒就不一样了,因为上帝已经在他们心中造了一个新人。这个新我不希望别人注意到我们的善行,最好完全注意不到我们的善行。但当上帝注意到我们所行的义时我们就会很开心。因为我们所做的仅仅是为了称谢上帝已经赐予我们的、已经为我们所做的。我们用上帝丰丰富富的赐予来回报上帝,我们因此喜乐,这喜乐也是我们所需要的唯一的奖赏。

我希望能够剔除我罪性当中错误的动机,可是我做不到,因为只有进入天堂,罪才会与我分离。但与此同时,我非常感谢在天上的父因耶稣的缘故,能够接受我的善行,把它视为赞美之举。上帝接受我的善行,因为他因耶稣的缘故接受我。而这反过来想让我给予更多。

祷告:天父啊,请原谅我肤浅的赞美和称谢。在我的新我中,我行善的唯一理由是想要称谢你、赞美你。但我的罪性带着它的骄傲总是悄悄钻进我的心里。感谢你亲爱的天父因耶稣的缘故接受我。愿荣耀唯独归于你,直到永远,阿门。

Matthew

Listen: Matthew 6: 1-4:  “Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven. 2 “So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 3 But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4 so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

When is charity really not charity at all? It’s when you give just to give yourself a pat on the back, hoping that others may see how generous you are. You might think that this is not describing you, but it is.  “I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature,” Paul wrote in Romans 7.  My sinful nature affects everything I do. That’s why the Bible says that my righteous acts are like filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6). When I give to the beggar on the street, my sinful nature pats me on the back. When I write out a check for church, my sinful nature pats me on the back. For the unbeliever, the hypocrite, that is the only motivation he has for his generosity. It makes him feel good about himself. 

But for the believer, there is also the new self that God has created in him.  In our new self, we don’t like to be noticed for our charity. We would rather that others didn’t notice at all. We are glad when God notices, only because our gifts are always given in thanksgiving for what he has given us, and for what he has done for us. The joy we have in giving back to God from what he has abundantly given us is the only reward we will ever need.

I wish that I could cancel out the false motives of my sinful nature, but I can’t, because until I am in heaven, sin will always be with me. At the same time, I am thankful that my God in heaven accepts my charity as an act of praise for Jesus’ sake. He accepts my charity because he accepts ME for Jesus’ sake. Which only makes me want to give more!

Prayer:  Father, forgive me for my shallow praise and thankfulness.  In my new self, my only reason for giving is to give you thanks and praise. But my sinful nature with its pride somehow sneaks into my heart as well. Thank you, dear Father, for accepting me for Jesus’ sake. To you alone be all glory forever. Amen.

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