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The Book of Jesus

Chapter Five

The New Amsterdam Publishing Company
Copyright © 1997

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The Sermon on the Mount

NARRATOR.
When Jesus had seated himself and his disciples had joined him, he lifted up his eyes, fixing them on his disciples and began to speak. Teaching them he said:
JESUS.
Happy are you who are poor, for yours' is the Kingdom of God.
Happy are the poor in spirit, for theirs' is the Kingdom of Heaven.
Happy are you that are hungry now, for you will be filled.
Happy are those who hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they will be filled.
Happy are you who weep now, for you will laugh.
Happy are those who mourn now, for they will be comforted.
Happy are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.
Happy are the merciful, for they will obtain mercy.
Happy are the pure in heart, for they will see God.
Happy are the peacemakers, for they will be called the children of God.
Happy are they who are persecuted for righteousness sake, for their's is the Kingdom of Heaven.
Happy are you, when men abuse you and persecute you and falsely speak all kinds of evil against you for my sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for your reward in heaven is great. For in this manner is how they persecuted the prophets before you.
Happy are you when people hate you, stop associating with you, abuse you and denounce your name as evil on account of the Son of Man. Rejoice when that day comes and leap for joy, for then your reward will be great in heaven. For in a similar manner their forefathers treated the prophets.
But woe to you who are rich, for you have received your consolation now.
Woe for you who have your fill now, for you will go hungry.
Woe for you who laugh now, for you will mourn and weep.
Woe for you when the world speaks well of you, for this was the way their forefathers treated the false prophets.
You are the salt of the earth, but if the salt becomes tasteless, what can make it salty again? It is not usable for anything and can only be thrown out to be trampled under foot by men.
You are the light of the world. A city that is built on a hilltop cannot be hidden. Neither do men light a candle only to cover it with a measuring basket. They put it on a lamp-stand where it can give light for all that are in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men so that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven.
Do not think that I have come to do away with the law or the prophets, I have not come to abolish but to fulfil. I tell you most sincerely, until heaven and earth disappear, not one dot, not one little stroke shall disappear from the law until all is fulfilled. Therefore, anyone who breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called the least in the Kingdom of Heaven. But anyone who does keep them and teaches them will be called great in the Kingdom of Heaven. For I tell you, if your righteousness does not go beyond the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter into the Kingdom of Heaven.
You have heard that it was said by the ancients: 'You are not allowed to murder' and anyone who does commit murder must answer for it before the court. But I say to you, that anyone who is angry with his brother without a cause will answer for it before the court. And anyone who shall say to his brother 'fool' will have to answer for it before the council [Sanhedrin]. But anyone who says 'you impious fool' will be in danger of the fires of Gehenna. Therefore, if you are bringing your gift to the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar, go your way and resolve the problems with your brother first. Then, come back and present your gift.
Come to an agreement with your opponent quickly while you are still on the way to the court with him or he may at any time hand you over to the judge and the judge hand you over to the bailiff and you will be thrown into prison. I tell you most sincerely, you will by no means get out until you have paid the last penny.
You have heard that is was said by the ancients, you are not allowed to commit adultery. But I say to you, that anyone who looks at a woman with the intent of having sex with her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye should cause you to sin, poke it out and throw it away from you. For it is more profitable that one of your body members be destroyed then to have your whole body thrown into Gehenna. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away form you. For it is more profitable for you that one of your body members should be destroyed then to have your whole body thrown into Gehenna.
It has also been said, that anyone who wants to get rid of his wife can divorce her by merely giving her a letter of dismissal. But I say to you, that anyone who divorces his wife, except in the case of fornication, causes her to commit adultery and anyone who marries a woman divorced in this manner commits adultery.
Again you have heard that it has been said by the ancients, you must not break your promises, but must fulfil your promises to the Lord. But I say to you, do not swear at all, either by heaven for it is God's throne or by the earth for it is His footstool, or by Jerusalem for it is the city of the great king. Do not swear by your own head either, because you cannot make one hair white or black. But say only this, yes, if you mean yes; no, if you mean no. For anything more than this comes from evil.
You have heard that it has been said, 'An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. But I say to you, offer no resistance to the wicked man. But anyone who hits you on your right cheek, turn to him the other as well.
And if any man sues you in court to take away your tunic for surety, let him have your cloak as well.
And if anyone orders you to go one mile, go two miles with him.
Give to anyone who asks of you and do not ask for your property back from the man who robs you.
Treat others as you would like them to treat you. If you love those who love you, what thanks can you expect? For sinners also love those who love them and if you do good to those who do good to you, what thanks can you have? For even sinners do as much.
And if you lend to those of whom you hope to be repaid, what thanks can you expect? Even sinners lend to sinners to receive back the same amount. If anyone wants to borrow from you, do not turn yourself away. Lend, without the hope of being repaid again and your reward will be great and you will be the children of the Highest. For He is kind to the ungrateful and the wicked. Therefore, be merciful, as your Father is also merciful.
You have heard that it has been said, 'You must love your neighbor and hate your enemy'. But I say to you who are listening, love your enemies and do good to them that hate you. Bless them that curse you and pray for them who despitefully use you and persecute you, in order that you may be children of your Father who is in Heaven. For he causes his sun to rise on the evil and on the good and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do as much? You must be perfect, even as your Father who is in Heaven is perfect.
Be careful not to parade your good deeds before men to be seen of them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father who is in Heaven. Therefore, when you do good deeds, do not sound a trumpet before yourself as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets that they may get the admiration of men. I tell you, they have their reward. But when you do good deeds, don't let your left hand know what your right hand is doing in order that your good deeds may be in secret and your Father who sees all that is done in secret will reward you openly.
And when you pray, you must not be as the hypocrites are; for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners in order to be seen by men. I tell you, they have their reward. But you, when you pray, go into your private room and when you have shut the door, pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees all that is done in secret shall reward you openly. When you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the pagans do. For they think that by using many words they will make themselves heard. Don't be like them! For your Father knows what you need before you ask Him. Use this as an example when you pray;
Our Father who is in Heaven, may your name be held Holy. Your Kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And do not put us to the test, but deliver us from evil. [For yours is the Kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.]
Because if you forgive men their failings, your Heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you don't forgive men their failings, neither will you Father forgive your failings.
When you fast, do not put on a gloomy appearance as the hypocrites do. For they disfigure their faces to let men know that they are fasting. I tell you most sincerely, they have had their reward. But you, when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face so that no one will know that you're fasting except your Father who is in secret. And your Father, who sees all that is done in secret, will reward you openly.
Do not store up treasures for yourselves on earth, where moths and [rust] woodworms can destroy them and where thieves can break in and steal. But store up treasures for yourselves in heaven, where neither moth nor woodworms can destroy them and where thieves cannot break in and steal. For where you treasure is, there will your heart be also.
The light of the body is the eye. If therefore your eye is sound, your whole body will be filled with light. But if your eye is diseased, your whole body will be filled with darkness. If then the light that is inside you is darkness, how great that darkness will be.
No one can [serve] slave for two masters. He will either hate the first and love the second or else he will hold to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.
That's why I'm telling you not to worry about your life; what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body and what you will wear. Isn't life more than food and the body more than clothing? Observe the birds of the air, they do not sow or reap or gather into barns, yet your Heavenly Father feeds them. Aren't you worth more than they are? Which of you by worrying can add one single cubit to his life span? And why worry about clothing! Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they do not work and they don't spin. And yet I say to you, that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.
Now if that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, you men of little faith?
So don't worry and say, 'What are we going to eat or what are we going to drink or how are we to be clothed?' It is after all these things that the people who don't know God [pagans] strive after.
Your Heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But you, seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things will be added to you. So don't worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will take care of itself. [for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself-KJ]. Each day has enough trouble of it's own.
Do not judge and you will not be judged. For with the type of judgment you use to judge, you will be judged. Do not condemn and you will not be condemned; forgive and you will be forgiven.
Give and it will be given you, a full measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over will be poured into your lap. For the same measure that you use to measure out is the same that will used to measure back to you again.
NARRATOR.
He also spoke a parable to them:
JESUS.
Can the blind lead the blind? Will they not both fall into a ditch?
The disciple is not above his teacher, but every one that is perfect, will be like his teacher.
Why do you observe the splinter that's in your brother's eye, and yet don't consider the beam that's in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, 'Let me pull the splinter out of your eye', when look, a beam is in your own eye. You hypocrite, remove the beam from your own eye first and then you will see clearly enough to remove the splinter from your bother's eye.
Do not give what is Holy to the dogs, neither throw your pearls in front of pigs or they may trample them under their feet and then turn on you and tear you to pieces.
Ask and it will be given you; seek and you will find, knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives; the one who seeks, will find; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened to him.
Is there a man among you who would give his son a stone if he asked for bread; or if he asked for a fish, would you give him a snake? If you then who are evil, know how to give your children what is good, how much more will your Father who is in Heaven give good things to those who ask him. Therefore, anything that you would want men to do to you, you do the same to them; for this is the Law and the Prophets.
You, enter in at the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the road is broad that leads to destruction and there are many who enter in by that gate. But, because the gate is narrow and the road is narrow which leads to life, there are few who find it.
Beware of false prophets who come to you in sheep's clothing, but underneath, they are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits, for every tree can be identified by the fruit it produces. Do men pick grapes from thorns or figs from thistles? In the same manner, a good tree produces good fruit. But a rotten tree produces diseased fruit. Neither can a rotten tree produce good fruit. Every tree that does not produce good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore, by their fruits you will know them.
A good man out of the good treasures of his heart produces that which is good and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart produces that which is evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.
Why do you call me, 'Lord, Lord.' and not do the things I say? Not everyone that says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter into the Kingdom of Heaven, but he that does the will of my Father who is in Heaven.
Many will say to me in that day, 'Lord, Lord, didn't we prophesy in your name, cast out demons in your name and work many miracles in your name?' Then I will profess to them, 'I never knew you, get away from me you workers of iniquity.' Therefore, everyone who comes to me and hears these words of mine and does them, I will show you what he is like:
I will compare him to a wise man who built a house, dug deep and laid the foundation on a rock. The rain fell, the waters rose, the winds blew and the flooded river beat violently against the house, but could not shake it, for it's foundation was laid on rock.
And everyone that hears these sayings of mine and does not do them shall be compared to a foolish man who built his house on the sand without a foundation. And the rain fell, the waters rose, the winds blew and the flooded river beat violently against the house and it immediately fell and the damage to that house was great.
NARRATOR.
When Jesus had finished these sayings and had come to the end of all he wanted the people to hear, the people were astonished at his instructing, for He taught as one having authority and not as the scribes.

Matthew 5:...1-48, 6:1-34, 7:1-29; Luke 6:20-49, 7:1...

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