The Greatest of Sermons


(5:1-16)
Seeing the crowd He went up the mountain.
His wisdom flowed like a natural fountain.
The disciples all followed to learn from His preaching.
As He spoke to them he began His great teaching:
“Blessed are those who mourn and are gentle, who hunger and thirst,
For to God in Heaven, they will always be first.
And they are the ones who are to be light
For the One who has power, honor and might.”

(5:17-20)
“The law and the prophets I came not to abolish.
But I came to fulfill them, to shine and to polish.
‘Til earth sees its end to your fear and dismay,
Longer than this God’s law is to stay.
God’s kingdom in Heaven shall call the one ‘least’
Who ignores a commandment even during a feast.
Unless you’re more righteous than a Pharisee
Then never the kingdom of Heaven will you see.”

(5:21-22)
“It was said not to commit murder by the ancients of old.
A murderer is liable to the courts you were told.
But if you are angry with even your brothers
Then worthy of Hell are you, like the others.”

(Response)
— But Jesus, what you’ve told us, it can’t be done.
No, no one is righteous, not even one.
Who can fulfill your every command?
It can’t be accomplished by a mere mortal man!

(5:23-26)
“And if you are at the altar some day
About to give an offering away
But before you give your offering then
You recall a relation that requires a mend
Leave your oblations there at the altar.
Then your torn relation you should go alter.
As soon as you know the mended relation will stay
Then come and give your gift at the end of the day.”

(5:27-30)
“And you’ve heard of adultery, you mustn’t commit.
What I say on the subject, do you think that is it?
If you look on another and lust for what you have found
You’re fooling yourself if you say your not fooling around.
So what should you do to control your hands and your eyes?
Listen to Me for a word to the wise.
You should cut off the branch that makes you sin,
And thus rise above the temptations of men.”

(5:31-32)
“When you marry a woman, its for the rest of your life.
You made a commitment when you made her your wife.
And if you divorce except for unchastity,
Then you’ve caused her to join in your adultery.”

(Response)
— But Jesus, what you’ve told us, it can’t be done.
No, no one is righteous, not even one.
Who can fulfill your every command?
It can’t be accomplished by a mere mortal man!

(5:33-37)
“You’ve heard that the ancients were always told
That all promises should come from just one mold,
That all oaths should be made under one accord,
That all vows be made unto the One who is Lord.
But you’re not to swear by earth or your head,
And you’re not to promise by Heaven as you may be led.
Then what shall you say to show you are honest?
No more than ‘no’ for your no and ‘yes’ for your yes.”

(5:38-42)
“In your scripture there is a law that is read
If a man takes your tooth, take a tooth from his head.
Instead you are to do it My way.
If a man slaps your cheek turn him the other that day.
And if one wants your shirt give it away with a smile,
And go two or three when asked for a mile.
If one wants what is yours and what you can lend
Then give it to him as if he’s a friend.”

(5:43-48)
“Love your neighbor, that’s what you’ve been told;
But if you want to really be bold,
Then love your enemy, this would be wise.
Yes, even love those whom you’d rather despise.”

(Response)
— But Jesus, what you’ve told us, it can’t be done.
No, no one is righteous, not even one.
Who can fulfill your every command?
It can’t be accomplished by a mere mortal man!

(6:1-4)
“When you give to the Lord, don’t make a scene.
Don’t blow profusely through a loud machine.
When giving like this, there’s no receiving reward.
Its like trying to make yourself a lord.
Don’t give to your God to be noticed by men.
Give in secret to the Lord in Heaven.
If necessary, give to the poor in disguise.
Thus your right hand catching your left by surprise.”

(6:5-15)
“And pray in a way that is much like this:
‘Our Father in Heaven, full of tenderness,
May the holy Kingdom and will of You
Come on earth as in Heaven anew.
Give us this day our daily food;
And forgive us our debts like You said You would.
Lead us not into temptation, of you we implore,
And deliver us from the evil of our daily lore.'”

(6:16-18)
“When the hypocrites fast, they wear a sad face.
They neglect their appearance to be seen by your race.
But when you fast, seek not man’s reward.
Your fasting’s between you and your Lord.”

(Response)
— But Jesus, what you’ve told us, it can’t be done.
No, no one is righteous, not even one.
Who can fulfill your every command?
It can’t be accomplished by a mere mortal man!

(6:19-24)
“Do not collect treasures on this earthly land.
For a thief may steal them right out of your hand.
Find spiritual treasures in Paradise,
And chase not the wealth of this earthly life.
Two masters aren’t served by only one man.
Nor should you think that you can
Serve both God and money, you hypocrite.
Make up your mind. Which one is it?”

(6:25-34)
“Do not be anxious for yourself.
Place all your worries upon the shelf.
As the Lord gives to the birds of the air,
Won’t He also give to you your share?
Do not be anxious for tomorrow.
This can only cause worry and sorrow.
Seek ye first God’s Kingdom and treasure,
For all else pales in light of His pleasure.”

(7:1-5)
“‘Brother, your eye has a speck,’ you will cry
Without seeing the log that is in your own eye.
The log in your eye is impairing your vision.
Is the speck in his eye as bad as you imagine?”

(Response)
— But Jesus, what you’ve told us, it can’t be done.
No, no one is righteous, not even one.
Who can fulfill your every command?
It can’t be accomplished by a mere mortal man!

(7:6)
“Whatever is holy, don’t give it to dogs.
Whatever is sacred, don’t give it to hogs.
And if it is righteous, don’t throw it to swine.
These things that are perfect, they also are Mine.
I’ve given you blessings and I’ve given you gifts.
Be good stewards of that which I’ve blessed you with.
For if you’re not careful and you squander it all,
They’ll trample you down and then laugh as you fall.”

(7:7-11)
“Ask and it shall be given to you
But first believe what your Father can do.
Seek and see then what you can see.
I tell you the Lord give’s abundantly.
You enjoy giving gifts to your own offspring.
And even sometimes enjoy giving offerings.
So much more will God’s giving be
Than you give to your own family tree.”

(7:12)
“What you want others to do unto you
This is how you should treat them, too.
If you would want one or two, then give them three
This is what you’d have them do unto thee.”

(Response)
— But Jesus, what you’ve told us, it can’t be done.
No, no one is righteous, not even one.
Who can fulfill your every command?
It can’t be accomplished by a mere mortal man!

(7:13-29)
Enter through the narrow gate.
But hurry, now and don’t be late.
Woe unto those, and sad be they
Who refuse to enter through the narrow way.”
When Jesus quit talking they were all in awe
At the words He was preaching without a flaw.
For He was teaching with authority.
As One who has lived eternally.

(Response)
— But Jesus, what you’ve told us, it can’t be done.
No, no one is righteous, not even one.
What can we do for eternal reward?
What you require of us is just too hard.
Who can fulfill your every command?
It can’t be accomplished by a mere mortal man!
Jesus replied: “You can’t; but I can.
I’ll open the door to the promised land.”

“I’ll live the life you cannot live.
I’ll give the death you cannot give.
I’ll conquer death. I’ll conquer sin.
Believe in Me and I’ll let you in.”

© Dr. Phil Bryant

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3 Comments

Filed under Poetic Perspectives

3 responses to “The Greatest of Sermons

  1. Pingback: The Great Trade — Author’s Reflection | managementdocandpoet

  2. Pingback: The Greatest of Sermons – Author’s Reflections | managementdocandpoet

  3. Thanks for the “like”, Baker.

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