27 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Do not commit adultery.’ (Exodus 20:14) 28 But here is what I tell you. Do not even look at a woman in the wrong way. Anyone who does has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 29 “If your right eye causes you to sin, poke it out and throw it away. Your eye is only one part of your body. It is better to lose it than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. 30 “If your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. Your hand is only one part of your body. It is better to lose it than for your whole body to go into hell. 31 “It has been said, ‘Suppose a man divorces his wife. If he does, he must give her a letter of divorce.’ (Deuteronomy 24:1) 32 But here is what I tell you. Anyone who divorces his wife causes her to commit adultery. And anyone who gets married to the divorced woman commits adultery. A man may divorce his wife only if she has not been faithful to him.
Jesus uses some very powerful words in this passage.
The one goal in our life is to conform to the will of God, and be prepared to sacrifice whatever stands in the way of this goal.
Righteousness before God involves responding to every situation that fulfills God’s law, externally and internally.
Jesus says evil springs from our heart, that is why the sin of adultery must be first dealt with in the heart – the place of our emotions, also the mind, will, thoughts and intentions.
Jesus gives grace and power to those who seek to follow his way of holiness in their state of life — whether they are married or single. If we want to live righteously we must understand the intention of God’s commands and decide in our heart to obey the Lord. God writes His law on our hearts and gives us His power to live his way of righteousness and holiness.
Do we trust in God’s love and allow his Holy Spirit to fill us with a thirst for righteousness and holiness? Jesus is urging us to choose life – a relationship with God, as opposed to a miserable life separated from the presence of God.
Lord, begin a new work of love within me. Give me a burning desire to live a life of righteousness and holiness. Instill in me a greater love for your commandments. Purify and transform me that I may be fully conformed into the likeness of Christ.
Written by Cathy Croft