Summary: Jesus teaches that thoughts and words are sin and that they damage relationships.

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Matthew 5:21-26

Intro: As I was growing up, one of my favorite shows was the incredible Hulk. How many remember The Hulk? It was a series where the main star David Banner was turned into the Hulk when he got angry. I don’t remember how he got the affliction of turning into a monster when he got angry but I do know that the whole show was centered around David Banner who was a doctor searching for a cure for his affliction.

. Try as hard as he could, Dr. Banner couldn’t keep from getting angry. He would warn people when they were doing something to make him angry. He would say, Don’t make me angry, you won’t like me very much when I’m angry. Then he would turn into the incredible Hulk. A huge green monster of a man.

. All of this because of anger.

. Anger can seem to make monsters of all of us can’t it.

. Just like the Hulk, Anger can effect us in many ways.

. With the Hulk, the effect was that it turned him into a big green monster.

. In our scripture today, Jesus tells us that anger has its effects on us also.

. We are back in the Sermon on the Mount this morning and Jesus is still teaching that there is much more to the law than the written commandments.

. Jesus is expanding and confirming that it’s what’s in your heart that matters. That God wants to live in this world through us.

. When we allow anger to enter into our lives that it affects our relationships.

. It affects our relationship with our fellow man and our relationship with God.

. Remember that these relationships are what Jesus’ new commandments teach us. Love God, Love each other.

. Anger gets in the way of both of these relationships.

. Let’s read our scripture.

. Mt 5 21-26- You have heard that our ancestors were told, ‘You must not murder. If you commit murder, you are subject to judgment.’22But I say, if you are even angry with someone, you are subject to judgment! If you call someone an idiot, you are in danger of being brought before the court. And if you curse someone, you are in danger of the fires of ahell.

23“So if you are presenting a sacrifice at the altar in the Temple and you suddenly remember that someone has something against you,24leave your sacrifice there at the altar. Go and be reconciled to that person. Then come and offer your sacrifice to God.

“When you are on the way to court with your adversary, settle your differences quickly. Otherwise, your accuser may hand you over to the judge, who will hand you over to an officer, and you will be thrown into prison.26And if that happens, you surely won’t be free again until you have paid the last penny.

. Anger affects our relationship with our fellow man.

. In verse 20, Jesus had just told the crowd there on the hillside that their righteousness had to be better than the righteousness of the religious leaders of the day.

. Then He said that you guys know the law. You know that it says that thou shall not murder someone.

. The Pharisees and Scribes would poke out their chests and proudly proclaim that they had never murdered anyone.

. They were in conformity with the letter of the law but still couldn’t grasp the spirit of the law.

. Back in verse 17, Jesus had just told them that he had not come to abolish the written law but that He had come to accomplish it’s purpose.

. He had come so that man would also understand the spirit of the law as well as the letter of the law.

. Clarence Darrow, the famed criminal lawyer once joked: "Everyone is a potential murderer. I have not killed anyone - but I frequently get satisfaction out of obituary notices."

. That was basically the attitude of the religious leaders.

. They taught that you should not murder but never gave any thought to character assassination.

. Jesus says that there is more to this then just not killing someone.

. You have been told that if you murder, you will be judged for this. I tell you that there is more to this .

. In verse 22 Jesus says: ’22But I say, if you are even angry with someone, you are subject to judgment! If you call someone an idiot, you are in danger of being brought before the court. And if you curse someone, you are in danger of the fires of ahell.

. Do you remember the old rhyme that goes like this.

. Sticks and stones will break my bones but words will never harm me.

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