March 18 – Faithful – Faithful in the Fine Details

Read Matthew 5:1-20

It would be easy to overlook the reminders of God’s faithfulness in today’s reading.  These verses are just an excerpt from what is probably the most well known of all of Christ’s sermons, the Sermon on the Mount.  The words that I want you to focus on come after those first verses we have come to call “the Beatitudes,” where Christ speaks of blessing extended to those who demonstrate godly character.  The words that should catch our attention come after that oft-cited and critically important reminder that we are “the salt of the earth” and “the light of the world.”

Our focus is on the last four verses of your reading (vv. 17-20).  Here, Jesus connects the faithfulness of God to the Word of God.

First of all, Jesus Himself points out His own faithful commitment to the Word of God (Law and Prophets, v. 17).  Although His coming marked a new day in the eternal plan of God, He did not throw out what God had promised before.  No, He came to fulfill it.  In fact, passages like John 19:24 point to specific details related to Christ that “happened that the Scripture might be fulfilled.”  Jesus was personally faithful to the Scriptures.

Verse 18 in our passage points beyond Christ’s personal commitment to fulfill promises related to Himself.  It reminds us that God will faithfully carry out everything found in the Law…down to the “jot and tittle” elements.  God was committed to every word, letter, and even portion of a letter.  He will dot all of His “i’s” and cross all of His “t’s” in doing all that He has said.

Finally, verse 19 challenges us to have that same faithful commitment to His word.  Those who teach, should teach it all with earnestness.  And, everyone of us should submit ourselves to every part of His word.

In other words, God will faithfully keep His promises, will we?

Steve Kern

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