Scripture: Matthew 5:27-37
Key verses: (27-28) “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”
Reflection: What is sin? We might answer that question with a list of behaviors, things we do that we know are wrong. We might move deeper to include the sins of omission, things we know we should do but we don’t do. In today’s passage Jesus moves even deeper to include our thoughts, our motivations, and our inner life. Sin isn’t just about what we do or don’t do; it’s also about what we think and feel.
If that’s the case, then this teaching from Jesus teaches us that we are all sinners. We are all in need of forgiveness and grace. We are all called to follow Jesus, not because we are worthy but because he is gracious and he includes us.
Today’s key verses are about adultery and lust. Our culture has begun to teach that sexual behavior is purely about physical pleasure and is a morally neutral act between consenting adults. Promiscuous behavior is rampant in the movies and on television. Pornography is an addiction that has trapped many people and destroyed many relationships.
Our faith teaches that sexual behavior is God’s gift to humanity as a life-affirming part of monogamous covenantal relationships. We are grateful for the gift of sexual desire and we seek God’s will for our sexual actions and our sexual thoughts and motivations. It’s not just what we do. It’s also what we think and we feel.
Prayer: Heavenly Creator, you made me in your image.Thank you for the gift of my body and for bodily pleasures. Teach me to honor you with my body and to seek your will for my bodily pleasure. Through Christ I pray. Amen.
Author: Millie Snyder
Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].