Matthew 5:45-47 King James Version (KJV)
45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.
46 For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?
47 And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?
Children of the Father! Isn’t that what we all want to be. Here in Matthew Chapter 5, we learn what it is to be Children of the Father. It is not just the previous few verses that are referenced here. It is the entire chapter in my mind. All of Chapter 5 teaches us to treat others with a proliferation of gentleness, mercy and justice. We are to treat all the same, Christian or non-Christian, friend or enemy. No matter what their race, sex, religion, favorite football team or what type of car they drive. We treat all the same, because our Father in heaven sends rain on all, not just some. I have never seen God single out just one field of a farmer to rain upon, or one house to keep protected from the rain. God has the ability to do that, but He does not. He rains on all. He brings the sun up for all, and He paints a beautiful sunset for all. He brings the flowers out of the ground to bloom, puts the birds in the air to sing, brings the wind to cool or warm. He places the stars at night, makes the moon take flight and makes the sun shine bright. He does this for everyone, good or bad, evil or righteous, if our Father in heaven treats all the same, why should we treat them differently?
We have a responsibility as Christians to show people who our Father is. Our choices are simple. We are either children of God or children of Satan. When the Scribes and Pharisees said the did not believe Jesus, He said they were of their father the devil (John 8:44). It’s simple a matter of who they believed. The same goes for us. If we believe God, we will do what God asks us to do. If we do not believe God, we believe the devil and that makes him our father. It all goes back to Adam, where the serpent convinced them God lied to them and was withholding something that was good for them. In fact, he convinced them that they could be just like God if they would listen to him. They listened and soon found out they had made a big mistake. Boy, I’ll say they did. It has been carried in the seed of man since that day, passed down from generation to generation every time the seed of man impregnates the egg of a woman. The only way we rid ourselves of that seed of sin within us, that seed of disobedience, is to accept the sinless sacrifice of Jesus Christ. He was born without the seed of sin because Mary was impregnated by the Holy Spirit, not by man. The seed of sinful man was never a part of Christ’s body as it is in every one of us. He came as the sinless Lamb of God, gentle, loving, full of mercy and grace, healing all who came to him regardless of who they were. He died on the cross free of sin, but took on your sin that you might be free. Free to love as He loved.
We miss the mark so much when we don’t love all those around us. Not just those that love us, but those that do not as well. Our love needs to extend to all, and it is expounded beautifully in Matthew Chapter 5. Be humble, mourn over sin, be meek, be hungry for doing right, be merciful, have a pure heart, be a peacemaker and don’t get rustled by persecution. As we put all these things into practice, we become the salt of the earth and the light of the world. Jesus said He is the light of the world, and He also said we are the light of the world! We must shine that light brightly and at all times for all people. This is our testimony and our witness of the Father. It will draw people to Him.
We still have a responsibility to follow the commandments, not get angry, seek reconciliation and do all we can to stay away from any offenses. We must keep our most sacred covenants of marriage just that, and not fall into adultery with our eyes. We must not commit ourselves to things we won’t fulfill and instead do more than is expected of us. That is what love is – all of the above. Jesus has outlined in this short chapter how we can be Children of the Father. Lesson after lesson, line after line brings us closer to that achievement. All we need to do now is to follow what He has told us. The Children of the Father do what the Father asks, just as Jesus did. His will must prevail in our lives, not our will.
This is the defining different between whether we are His children of not, Do we do His will? Many will ask what His will is. I would say it’s pretty well defined in the Bible and showed to us by Jesus life on this earth. His will is mercy. Mercy for all, not just the pure and just, but for the downtrodden and ignorant. Jesus had mercy on all, even the religious rulers who came against Him. His words against them were to draw them back to God, not to drive them away. It was to encourage them to consider their ways and return to the heart of the law. It has always fascinated me that the second greatest commandment is buried in the middle of the book of Leviticus (19:18). It is not in a place where it stands out for all to see. It’s in the heart of the 5 books of the law. Love your neighbor as yourself. Simple and to the point. This is the will of God.
I wrote a chorus last year that expresses my heart in relation to doing God’s will and am going to link you to the music. Not the best production, but you can see my heart. Here are the words:
Wherever you ask me to go, I’ll go
Whatever you ask me to do, I’ll do
Whatever you ask me to say I’ll say
Whatever you want me to give, I’ll give
However you want me to live, I’ll live
Whoever you want me to love. I’ll love
Because I am yours, all yours
I have given all my heart and soul to you
Eternally yours, all yours
Help me live my life to glorify your name