Day 6: Jesus Raised the Bar

The Daily Word: Monday, January 6th, 2020
Genesis 13:5-15:21
Matthew 5:27-48
Psalm 6:1-10
Proverbs 1:29-33
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Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
“You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” – Matt. 5:27-28

Jesus didn’t lower the standard of righteousness; He raised it! Under the Old Covenant, the command was, “You shall not murder” (Ex. 20:13); but under the New Covenant, Jesus said that anyone who is even angry is as sinful as a murderer (Matt. 5:22). Under the Old Covenant, the command was “You shall not commit adultery” (Ex. 20:14); but under the New Covenant, Jesus said that whoever even looks at a woman who is not his wife, “…has already committed adultery with her in his heart” (Matt. 5:28).

Jesus does not just wink at your sin and let it go. He didn’t come to relax God’s standard; He came to tighten it. But when He raised the bar, Jesus also provided a way over it. Jesus fulfilled the Law for you. He satisfied every condition for righteousness. He lived a perfect, sinless life! And then He died in your place. And when you trust in Him instead of yourself, you, “…become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Cor. 5:21).

Yes, Jesus raised the bar; but then Jesus jumped over it for you. Apart from Jesus, you don’t stand a chance; but when you trust in Him, God accepts you as His own. Are you ready to stop trusting yourself, and start trusting Jesus instead?

Prayer:

Jesus, thank You for dying on the cross for me. Thank You for living a perfect, sinless life, and then dying in my place. You did what I could never do! You pleased God, so that when I believe in You, I could please Him too.

© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.