Matthew 5 v 21 – 26
21 “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment.’ 22 But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire. 23 So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, 24 leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.
25 Come to terms quickly with your accuser while you are going with him to court, lest your accuser hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the guard, and you be put in prison. 26 Truly, I say to you, you will never get out until you have paid the last penny. (ESV)
The dynamics of rifts and restauration.
- Causes of rifts in human relationships:
a. The Act of Murder (v 21).
b. The Anger of Malice (v 22).
c. The Articulation of Malice.
d. The Attitude of Malice.
- How to restore broken relationships:
a. Remember (v 23) – we need to have sharp Christian consciences.
b. Retreat (v 24) – leave your gift before the altar.
c. Reconcile – forgiveness.
d. Returning – worship God.
e. Restitution (vv 25-26) – come to terms quickly.