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Matthew

The Gospel of Matthew

Longing for Righteousness

As a child, I struggled to finish my dinner. Not that I was given too much food, I just disliked one or more of the items on my plate. Often my mom would remind me of the starving child in Africa who would love to have my food. Fortunately, international adoptions were not common back then, else I might have foolishly suggested we procure one. That would not have gone over well. The problem was not an inefficient allocation of… Read More »Longing for Righteousness

Triumphant Meekness

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It is like the Rocky movies. Twelve rounds, winner take all, the arrogant, brutish slugger up against the over-matched but hopeful challenger. The first nine rounds are somewhat typical in that the amateur rival is getting the snot beat out of him by the champ, along with a good deal of blood. However, this match is different. The challenger does not even throw a punch. He is continually knocked down, gets back up, staggers but stays in the fight. Finally,… Read More »Triumphant Meekness

Matthew 5:4

Good News for Mourners

The term social justice has become a volatile catchphrase that is bound to stir up emotions across the political spectrum. Though the Bible clearly calls us to uphold justice, some have hijacked the vocabulary of justice to promote an agenda contrary to God, his commandments, and his design. These people proceed with a presumption of their own righteousness. However, the biblical starting point for godly social justice is not self-righteous indignation, but mourning. Yet, that mourning is not without hope.… Read More »Good News for Mourners

Poor in spirit

The Poverty Gospel

Let’s face it, the prosperity preachers have an appealing shtick: “God wants you to drive the best car, live in lavish luxury, and be independently wealthy.” Unsurprisingly, that message coincides very conveniently with my own innate self- indulgence, covetousness, and vanity. Nevertheless, the most formidable opponent of this prosperity gospel is the Bible. In the Beatitudes (Matt. 5:3-12), Jesus preached a contrary message. His gospel involves poverty, mourning, meekness, hunger, purity, peacemaking, and persecution. The primary characteristic of the blessed… Read More »The Poverty Gospel