Life Recovery Bible - Page 12

Page 1204 / M atthew 6
black. 37 Just say a simple, ‘Yes, I will,’ or ‘No,
I won’t.’ Anything beyond this is from the
evil one.
Teaching about Revenge
“You have heard the law that says the punishment must match the injury: ‘An eye for an
eye, and a tooth for a tooth.’* 39 But I say, do
not resist an evil person! If someone slaps you
on the right cheek, offer the other cheek also.
If you are sued in court and your shirt is taken
from you, give your coat, too. 41 If a soldier demands that you carry his gear for a mile,* carry
it two miles. 42 Give to those who ask, and don’t
turn away from those who want to borrow.
Teaching about Love for Enemies
“You have heard the law that says, ‘Love your
neighbor’* and hate your enemy. 44 But I say,
love your enemies!* Pray for those who persecute you! 45 In that way, you will be acting
as true children of your Father in heaven. For
he gives his sunlight to both the evil and the
good, and he sends rain on the just and the
unjust alike. 46 If you love only those who love
you, what reward is there for that? Even corrupt tax collectors do that much. 47 If you are
kind only to your friends,* how are you different from anyone else? Even pagans do that.
But you are to be perfect, even as your Father
in heaven is perfect.
Teaching about Giving to the Needy
“Watch out! Don’t do your good deeds publicly, to be admired by others, for you will
lose the reward from your Father in heaven.
When you give to someone in need, don’t
do as the hypocrites do—blowing trumpets
in the synagogues and streets to call attention to their acts of charity! I tell you the
truth, they have received all the reward they
will ever get. 3 But when you give to someone
in need, don’t let your left hand know what
your right hand is doing. 4 Give your gifts
in private, and your Father, who sees every­
thing, will reward you.
Teaching about Prayer and Fasting
“When you pray, don’t be like the hypocrites who love to pray publicly on street corners and in the synagogues where every­one
can see them. I tell you the truth, that is all
the reward they will ever get. 6 But when you
pray, go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father in private.
Then your Father, who sees every­thing, will
reward you.
“When you pray, don’t babble on and
on as the Gentiles do. They think their
prayers are answered merely by repeating
their words again and again. 8 Don’t be like
them, for your Father knows exactly what
you need even before you ask him! 9 Pray
like this:
Our Father in heaven,
may your name be kept holy.
May your Kingdom come soon.
May your will be done on earth,
as it is in heaven.
Give us today the food we need,*
5:38 Greek the law that says: ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ Exod 21:24; Lev 24:20; Deut 19:21. 5:41 Greek
milion [4,854 feet or 1,478 meters]. 5:43 Lev 19:18. 5:44 Some manuscripts add Bless those who curse you. Do good
to those who hate you. Compare Luke 6:27-28. 5:47 Greek your brothers. 
6:11 Or Give us today our food for the day; or
Give us today our food for tomorrow.
5:43-48 When we love our enemies, we can be sure that we are making progress in recovery.
Loving our enemies doesn’t mean we have to like them, but it does mean we must forgive them
and desire what is best for them. If we harbor anger and bitterness toward others, we hurt only
ourselves; such emotions keep us from making progress in recovery. God loved us while we were
still his enemies (see Romans 5:8); he loves us even though we are far from perfect. Recovery is
not perfectionism; it is developing the ability to follow God and shape our decisions and actions
according to his will for us.
6:5-8 Public prayer is open to many distortions and abuses. Some individuals use majestic-­
sounding, churchy jargon that impresses people, but not God. Others think that the key to
answered prayer is repetition, thus reducing it almost to a chant or mantra. Both attitudes can
easily miss the mark because they assume prayer has more to do with technique than internal
­attitudes. True heart-to-heart communication with God, whether private or public, is rewarded
and will have a profound effect on our progress in recovery.
6:12, 14-15 True forgiveness is an essential part of any recovery program. We often have difficulty
getting past our anger and bitterness toward those who have mistreated or abused us. However,
asking God’s forgiveness for our personal shortcomings and sins is hypocritical unless we are willing to forgive others. We forfeit forgiveness from God by denying forgiveness to others, to the
detriment of our recovery program. This is not only selfish but also self-destructive.

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