Matthew 6:1-4 is about giving to the needy and being charitable while no one is looking. This was a problem in Jesus' time that those who gave to the needy were loud about it and made it known in front of other people. In today's world, there is a temptation where one can give and proclaim it across the world via social media but also likewise one can give in secret just as easily. One can just go to an organization that has a donation page of their website and fill in one's credit card information and hit submit and no one knows about it except the financial person or team that is behind the organization.
It is important to do charitable acts not in front of people because one's reward would be that of heavenly bound not earth fading.
In Matthew 6:5-14 Jesus is pointing out prayer and how we should pray. Pray in secret in one's room and not let anyone know that you are praying. Because there once again, people were praying out loud in front of people. And they wanted to be known. Like wise, this can be done on social media and video sharing websites. Where a person praying in front of not just hundreds of people in Jesus' day but praying in front of millions and millions on social media. It is one thing that a pastor or elder has a church service meant that they broadcast the service. This isn't talking about that. It is talking about one's personal prayer walk and recording it and uploading to a video sharing platform and it goes viral. One can set it as a private recording on most video sharing platforms. But there are times that people do their personal prayer times and upload it and many people see what they are doing, and they got their reward. But from this passage, if one is doing their own prayer life, it must be done in secret and not in front of potentially millions of people.
In verse 9 when the Lord's Prayer starts, in the E.S.V. it states "Pray then like this" but in the N.A.S.B. it states "Pray, then, in this way" It seems that the N.A.S.B has a stronger command while the E.S.V is making it more of an opinion. Since I'm no Biblical expert, I don't know what is more correct, but I know the N.A.S.B is more accurate to the Greek and Hebrews compared to the E.S.V, I would have to side with the N.A.S.B more or less on most translation differences. I do primarily use the E.S.V that is because Crossway does do a good job at the amount of different types of Bibles, like Journal, Compact, Large Print, there are way more options using the E.S.V than the N.A.S.B. I do have the John MacArthur Study Bible (N.A.S.B) version. Not saying that the E.S.V is a complete dumpster fire unlike the message bible (yes, I did not capitalize the word "bible" for the message bible, because that is how low of a view that I see the message bible).
Back to the text, in verses 9 to 13 teaches the actual Lord's prayer and how we should go about praying. Some Christians thinks that we should just more or less state the Lord's prayer. And others would argue that yes, say the Lord's prayer but also add our own situation that we are in. So, I have seen my brothers and sisters pray the Lord's Prayer in such away that they say part of it, then insert their own personal prayers and then move onto the next verse. This was also done in the Psalms as well. But in terms of what is more correct just saying the Lord's Prayer only or pray with the Lord's Prayer. I tend to side with just stating what Scripture says and then after the Lord's prayer is finished, then go into one's personal prayers. But that is more or less how I approach it, and I think it is more correct, but this is one of the smaller Biblical issues out there and it is something that I plan on talking to one of my elders or pastors about the issue. Just my thoughts on the matter.
That is all I have for today, I hope that this was helpful for you to get into the Word of God! And as a reminder, I'm just a toilet bowl cleaner that is going through the Word of God, nothing special!
Disclaimer - Just a guy that cleans toilets for a living, and don't have any degree in the Bible or holds an office of my local church. I hope that this spurs you into studying the Word of God and be engaged with your local church.
Matthew 5:1 - 7:29 - Overview of Sermon on the Mount
This was a sermon that Jesus did, that Matthew recorded. Jesus first did the beatitudes from verses 2 - 11.
In the Beatitudes, there is a list of things that we need to strive for in our life. Like in verse 3 "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." is an example where we need to be humble and not be prideful because a prideful spirit come before the fall. In this verse also recognize that we need God at the end of the day and without Him we are nothing.
The beatitudes fly in the face of the prosperity Gospel. Because the prosperity gospel seeks what is available on this earth right now and it takes the opposite viewpoint of the beatitudes.
Verses 13 to 16 of Chapter 5 of Matthew, is about being salt and light to this dark world. That we need to share the Gospel to those who don't know Jesus.
Matthew 5:17-20 is about Jesus coming to fulfill the law not to abolish the law. We need to observe the law of the Lord, in the Ten Commandments so that we can be pointed the need for Jesus' sacrifice of the cross for our sins.
Matthew 5:21-26 focuses on murder and how we should be careful on our anger especially towards those around us and if we are angry with those who are close to us, need to reconcile before the end of the day.
Matthew 5:27 to 32 is about Adultery and Divorce. That if we go about looking at a woman with lustful intent we have committed adultery in our hearts. Our society is filled with adulterous images and messages, that we need to be careful on what we consume on the internet and our TVs. At least now, we have the technology to curb our eyes away from such images, but Jesus went straight to the heart of the matter which is our hearts are deceitful and is in need of constant evaluation. Then quite fitting Jesus went to the issue of Divorce and said that divorce is only for sexual immorality.
In Matthew 5:33 to 37 Jesus addresses the issue of oaths and says don't take oaths lightly but it is better to say yes or no than to swear an oath.
Matthew 5:38 to 48 Jesus addresses the issue of loving your enemy and do good towards those who hate us because this would cause those who hate us, have their hearts convicted and maybe eventually turn their lives over to Jesus. Because this passage has saved so many souls from the hands of Satan. Especially in persecuted areas of the world. Where the followers of Jesus loved their enemies to the point where they were converted to Christianity.
I bit off more than I can chew! Oh, well! Hence, the Part 1. I'm thinking it is going to be a total of 3 parts to this overview.