Back in July we spent 3 weeks exploring the 10 Commandments and the two greatest commandments that Jesus gave in response to a question about what is the greatest commandment? So, apart from reminding us of what we talked about this week’s main focus will be the verse from Matthew: “Do not think that I have come to do away with the Law of Moses and the teachings of the prophets. I have not come to do away with them, but to make their teachings come true.”
There are many commentators and theologians who would give the main reason that the religious leaders of the time wanted to get rid of Jesus was that he was questioning and challenging their teaching and therefore the Law.
When we are challenged it’s never easy. No one likes to think that they are wrong or that they could be thinking or doing things that could hurt or discriminate against someone or something. But challenge can, at times, help us to think further, to question and not to just assume what has always been is right. Think of the process of slavery abolition – it was the law and it took quite some time for people to look at slavery as not how we should live.
I believe that culture, institutionalism and religion had got in the way of the relationship that God wanted to have with the people and so Jesus came to show us that and be God with us in person. When we explored the 10 commandments I spoke of these commandments being about our relationship with God and our relationship with our neighbour – or each other. I believe that Jesus is saying that all God has given us as tools and instructions on how to live still stand, that Christ was not present to take them away, but that he was here to show us the real meaning behind these commandments.
What do we need to do to BE the people of God in the world today? I think we need to be living the life that Christ has shown us is the way to live, we need to embody and make come true the meaning and relationships that these commandments were meant to encompass. That’s the challenge we get from today’s readings.
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