The impossibly difficult instructions found in the sermon on the mount have often troubled me.
When I think about loving enemies, turning the other cheek, giving to the poor, storing up treasures in heaven, etc... I often feel like there's NO WAY I can be successful in the correctives Jesus presents.
With that said, I think Oswald Chambers speaks to the dilemma incredibly well in his devotional, "My Utmost for His Highest", and here is what he says:
"The Sermon on the Mount is not an ideal, it is a statement of what will happen in me when Jesus Christ has altered my disposition and put in a disposition like His own. Jesus Christ is the only One Who can fulfill the Sermon on the Mount."
I think this quote can be helpful when preaching through the Sermon on the Mount and/or even when preaching through being a 'New creation IN Christ'.
Related Sermon Illustrations
Contributed by Jim Kane on Mar 12, 2005
Why do you follow Jesus? Patrick Morley has some important things to say about our answer to this question. "The American gospel has evolved into a gospel of addition without subtraction. It is a belief that we can add Christ to our lives, but not subtract sin. It is a change in ...read more
Contributed by Dana Chau on Jul 21, 2003
Mark Twain noted, "Most people are bothered by those passages of Scripture they do not understand, but the passages ...read more
Contributed by Greg Buchner on Mar 28, 2005
Lee Strobel put it like this… “If we were holding a trial to determine the facts concerning the resurrection, and if we were to call to the witness stand every witness who personally encountered the resurrected Jesus and we cross-examined them for only 15 minutes, and if we went around the ...read more
Contributed by Lou Nicholes on Jan 18, 2005
Knowledge is exploding at such a rate—more than 2000 pages a minute—that even Einstein couldn’t keep up. In fact, if you read 24 hours a day, from age 21 to 70, and retained all you read, you would be one and a half million years behind when you finished. How can it be, in a world where half the ...read more
Contributed by Brent Baker on Sep 13, 2005
In his book, The One-Minute Manager, Kenneth Blanchard recommends developing the practice of "one-minute praising," where the manager (or parent, spouse, etc.) tries to "catch someone doing something right" and then spend a full sixty seconds praising that person for the good deed. This is a lot ...read more