Date: February 12, 2017
DID HE REALLY JUST SAY THAT?
SCRIPTURE: DEUTERONOMY 30:15
20; MATTHEW 5: 21
GRACE COVENANT PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH, ASHEVILLE, NC
February 9, 2017
The Rev. Samantha Gonzalez
The Rev. Dr. Marcia Mount Shoop, Pastors
HOW DO WE KNOW WHERE WE ARE GOING?
(MMS and SGB move to center of Chancel and take off stoles)
: A reading from the Gospel of Matthew.
“You have heard that it
was said to those of ancient times, ‘You shall
not murder’; and ‘whoever murders shall
be liable to judgment.’
But I say to you that if you are angry with a brother or
you will be liable to judgment; and if you insult
a brother or sister,
be liable to the council; and if you say, ‘You fool,’ you will be liable to the hell
So when yo
u are offering your gift at the altar, if you remember that your brother or
has something against you,
leave your gift there before the al
tar and go; first
be reconciled to your brother or sister,
and then come and offer your gift.
terms quickly with your accuser while you a
re on the way to court
with him, or your
accuser may hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the guard, and you will be
thrown into prison.
Truly I tell you, you will never get out until you have paid the last
Wait a minute? Did Jesus really just say that? What about
abusive relationships? What about survivors of sexual assault and
not always the road to freedom
it can be just another
way to put already vulner
able bodies in more danger.
Jesus must have a more
liberating word here.
“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit
But I say to
you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust has already
committed adultery with her in his heart.
If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it
out and throw it away; it is better for you to lose one of your members than for your
whole body to be th
rown into hell.
And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off
and throw it away; it is better for you to lose one of your members than for
body to go into hell.
SAM: Wait! Stop. The healing Jesus, the Jesus of non
and love can’t be telling us to
harm ourselves, to even dismember ourselves. The
Jesus that calls us to fight for justice, to pray for mercy, to be a source of love in the
world can’t be saying something that feels so harsh. There must be some good news
was also said, ‘Whoever divorces his wife, let him give her
a certificate of divorce.’
But I say to you that anyone who divorces his wife, except on
the ground of unchastity, causes her to commit adultery; and whoever marries a
divorced woman commits ad
I grieve for the ways this passage has
been used as a weapon against people, women and men. I grieve for all the loss that
folds out of the guilt and shame that this pass
age can load onto people. Did Jesus
lly just say that?
“Again, you have heard that it was said to those of ancient
times, ‘You shall not swear falsely, but carry out the vows you have made to the Lord.’
But I say to you, Do not swear at all, either by heaven, for i
t is the throne of God,
or by the earth, for it is his footstool, or by Jerusalem, for it is
the city of the great King.
And do not swear by your head, for you cannot make one
hair white or black.
Let your word be ‘Yes, Yes’ or
‘No, No’; anything more than this
comes from the evil one.
Bridge to Part 2:
is the word of the Lord??
MMS: And we’re
called to “give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will
of God in Christ Jesus for you.”
(1 Thessalonians 5:18)
SGB: How do we find our way?
MMS: Where do we go from here?
Choir and SGB, MMS sing first verse of
“LORD I WANT TO A CHRISTIAN IN
PART 2: COMING TOGETHER TO SEEK DIRECTION, WISDOM,
HELP IN THE DISORIENTATION
Tell me what you do
when you get lost
Tell me what you feel
How things look to you
When You Get Lost,
by Carol Prejean Zippert