What Jesus Did! 'Warned!' — Matthew 5:19

Friday, February 19, 2021

[Jesus continued:] "So if you ignore the least commandment and teach others to do the same, you will be called the least in the Kingdom of Heaven. But anyone who obeys God's laws and teaches them will be called great in the Kingdom of Heaven."
— Matthew 5:19 NLT

Key Thought

Jesus did not come to abolish the law of Moses. His disciples cannot set aside the law simply because they don't like it or it is inconvenient. Jesus is trying to help them to a greater righteousness and holiness. While this righteousness and holiness can be received only by grace, Jesus emphasizes grace must not mean rewriting God's will for character and holiness so the standards are lower. This is especially true of those who teach others about God's will. The last thing we want to do is promise an easy response to the Good News of Jesus with no demands when God has set the character, faith, ministry, life, and service of Jesus as our standard. On the other hand, we do not want to make the way for others unnecessarily difficult to follow or be the source of their drifting off the path. In sharing the Good News, we want to share the truth: God's will, revealed through his word by the Holy Spirit.

Today's Prayer

Father of all truth, I come to you now wanting to know your will and wanting even more to put it into practice. Please help me discern what your truth is and then live it each day in my life. I want to obey all your will and not just the parts that are easy to fulfill. May I wholly live in your love and care. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Matthew 18:6-7
  • James 1:3
  • Matthew 7 :13-29


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Illustration of Matthew 5:19 NLT — "So if you ignore the least commandment and teach others to do the same, you will be called the least in the Kingdom of Heaven."

About This Devotional

What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware and is available in book form.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.