No one said it was going to be easy. Being a Christian can be tough! We are supposed to be examples of Christ’s love towards one another. We are supposed to turn the other cheek and love our enemies. We are not supposed to commit adultery or divorce, so that means we must work hard at our marriages to keep them strong and support others with their marriages. We are to be the light of the world!
Thankfully, before going over all these rules to live by, Jesus gives us the wonderful Beatitudes. The Beatitudes remind us that being a Christian can be tough. We may suffer. However, whatever sufferings we endure in this life, we must look past them. We need to focus on the end goal . . . Heaven. We will eventually be eternally blessed with God in His Kingdom.
For this week, please read Matthew 5:1-6:34. I’ve included a little bit of additional information that I have found, which is shown below and on the Week 3 page. Once you have read the verses for this week, the corresponding bible notations in your study guide, and the information I’ve included, please answer the questions below (also shown on the Week 3 page) and share your thoughts with the group either on our Facebook page or on the LGB Week 3 page.
Information: Verse 5:39b: “But if any one strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.” When a person would slap another person, they would use their right hand. Since the verse states that the right check is struck, this means that the person is given a backhanded slap. This is an insult and an act of humiliation. Therefore, if you turn your cheek, you don’t show humiliation. As a result, you rob the other person of the ability to humiliate you in this manner, shaming them instead. This should cause the violence to end, which will allow the aggressor a chance at repentance, leading toward a healing of the relationship. (New Collegeville Bible Commentary: The Gospel According to Matthew by Barbara E. Reid)
- What verse(s) stood out to you and why?
- While reading the beginning of Chapter 5, I feel like I am at a pep rally. I expect to hear a roar of applause and cheers while each Beatitude is read. What comes to your mind when reading them? Do they offer comfort to you or do they bother you? Are they inline with our society’s values? (Matthew 5:1-11)
- As shown above in the information section, to “turn the other cheek” means to stop the cycle of retaliation and to help bring along repentance. Look at your relationships. Are any of them ones in which you always seem to end up fighting? If so, how have you contributed to the cycle? What are some ways you can help end the cycle of retaliation? (Matthew 5:38-41)
- When you do the Lord’s work or pray to Him, are you doing it to praise the Lord or to gather acclaim? (Matthew 6:1-18)
- Where does your treasure lie? How much value do you place on money and material goods? (Matthew 6:19-21)
- Additional Questions found in your study guide or in the Ignatius Catholic Study Bible – The Gospel of Matthew (page 75)