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Matthew 18:7-11 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Danger of Stumbling-blocks

Matthew 18:7-11 – The Danger of Stumbling-blocks

|| Mark 9:37, 42; Luke 9:48; Luke 17:1, 2

MT18:7 “Woe to the world’s inevitable stumbling-blocks![1] But, woe to the person who causes the stumbling![2] MT18:8 So, if your hand or foot[3] scandalizes[4] you – cut it off and hurl it away[5] from you. Better to enter Life maimed[6] rather than be thrown into everlasting fire[7] with two hands and two feet! MT18:9 Also, if your eye[8] causes you scandal, remove it and hurl it away from you. Better to enter Life with only one eye rather than be hurled into Gehenna’s[9] fire with two eyes! MT18:10 Watch[10] that you never despise[11] one of these ‘little ones’. For I tell you that their angels in heaven[12] always look upon the face[13] of my heavenly Father.” MT18:11 [[“For the Son of Humankind came to save what was lost.”]][14]

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[1] Woe to the world’s inevitable stumbling-blocks: The Greek for “stumbling-blocks” is SCANDALON. Or, KJV: woe unto the world because of offenses; ASV: occasions of stumbling; RSV: temptations to sin; KNX: hurt done to consciences; WMS: influences to do wrong. Research the words world or KOSMOS for notes.

[2] Causes the stumbling: Research the word scandal for notes. What may cause “stumbling”? See Matthew 16:23 for an example. Compare 1 Samuel 25:31; Ezekiel 7:19, 20; 14:3, 4; Romans 14:13; 1 Corinthians 8:9; Revelation 2:14. Many will quote Psalm 119:165 here but it is wise to discern the meaning.

[3] Hand or foot: Eve’s foot took her to the Tree and her hand reached out for its Fruit (Genesis 3:5, 6). Touch must be avoided if the object is desirable (1 Corinthians 7:1; James 1:14, 15). The feet must avoid those places that can cause scandal (Psalm 119:59, 101; Proverbs 1:16; Proverbs 4:26, 27; Proverbs 5:5; Proverbs 19:2; Romans 3:15). The word “your” is in the singular and so the Nazarene speaks to one person in the group.

[4] Scandalizes: This is closest to the Greek word. The English “scandal” is from a Greek root to “snare” and may mean: offends, shocks, disgraces; and, that slanderous gossip caused by such an offense. Research scandal for more notes.

[5] Cut it off and hurl it away: The absurdum is famous. The very imagery of people cutting off limbs and gouging out eyes is powerful and yet almost humorous for it is clearly not to be taken literally. The lesson is to remove the movement in the direction of the desire, by foot or touch. Avoid those situations and circumstances that will create scandal. See notes on Matthew 5:29. Compare and meditate upon Colossians 3:5.

[6] Better to enter Life maimed: The idea is not to be taken literally but is a contrast so simple anyone can grasp the point: any sacrifice is worth attaining “Life.” Mark 9:47 adds, “… into the kingdom of God.” “Life” here is existence in the Father’s Kingdom (see notes on Matthew 13:43).

[7] Into everlasting fire: Or, KJV: everlasting fire; ASV: eternal fire; RHM: age-abiding fire. We believe the metaphors continue as Gehenna is a symbol of destruction without end. Research the words HADES or GEHENNA for notes elsewhere. See notes on Matthew 25:41, 46.

[8] Your eye: It is the eye that desires. To Eve the Tree was “desirable to look upon.” The Proverbs counsels the young and inexperienced to be careful at what the eyes behold (Proverbs 4:25). Read and meditate upon 1 John 2:15-17. It is not called “a wandering eye” for nothing. The eye is the engine of coveting.

[9] Gehenna’s: Research the word GEHENNA and HADES for notes on the subject.

[10] Watch: The Greek is OPATE from the root for “eye.” There is a good way to use the eyes. Or, KJV: take heed; KNX: see to it; WMS: be careful not to look.

[11] Never despise: Or, KJV: despise not; KNX: treat one… with contempt; WMS: look with scorn. Our attitude toward others in the spiritual association bears on our own everlasting welfare.

[12] Their angels in heaven: At once frightening, and again comforting, to know powerful angelic creatures are aware of the treatment (or even attitude) on the part of the politically ambitious toward the humblest member of the Christian faith. Compare Psalm 34:7 and Hebrews 1:14. Note: it is the “little ones” who have angels in heaven.

[13] Always look upon the face: Or, KJV: always behold the face; RHM: continually behold; WMS: have uninterrupted access to. Consider the visions in Daniel 7 and Revelation 4 (Luke 1:19).

[14] [[…]]: Now recognized as not adequately supported by some manuscripts (D, W, Vg, Syc,p, Arm add; א, B, Sys omit).

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Preceding

Nazarene Commentary Matthew 5:27-30 – 2. The Nazarene’s Commentary on Exodus 20:14

Matthew 11:2-6 Encouragement for John and Reproach for cities 2 Imprisoned Baptist Encouraged

Matthew 18:1-6 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Children and Stumbling

Paying vows to Jehovah God

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Additional reading

  1. It´s not how you fall, but how you standup
  2. Temptation in matrimony

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Further reading

  1. Stumbling
  2. Doubtful disputations – spiritual wickedness

Nazarene Commentary Matthew 5:27-30 – 2. The Nazarene’s Commentary on Exodus 20:14

  1. Matthew 5:27-30 – 2. The Nazarene’s Commentary on Exodus 20:14

MT5:27 “You heard it said:[1] ‘Commit not adultery.’[2] [Exodus 20:14] MT5:28 But, I tell you: Anyone looking at a woman, desiring her in his heart,[3] has already adulterated her.[4] MT5:29 But, if your right eye stumbles you,[5] cut it out[6] and throw it away. Better to lose one body-member than your whole body be thrown into Gehenna. MT5:30 And, if your right hand stumbles you,[7] cut if off and throw it away. For it is better one of your limbs be lost than your whole body go to Gehenna.[8]

 

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[1] Heard it said: The Nazarene rabbi’s second reference to the Ten Commandments. Paul also uses this commandment at Romans 2:22.

[2] Adultery: Exodus 20:14. Various renderings: BER: break the marriage vow.

[3] Heart: Various renderings: TCNT: with impure intention; WEY: cherishes lustful thoughts; WMS: an evil desire; BER: has in his heart already broken the marriage vow. Compare Job 31:1: looking; James 1:18: sin begins. Perhaps no verse of Scripture has tormented male souls more than this one for nearly all men stand condemned at one time in their life for this deviation and those who deny this are liars. Jesus does not mean to condemn, for he knows what is in man, nor does he give a command here; but, he merely states the fact or principle: sin begins in the mind (James 1:14, 15). It is mainly married men Jesus has in mind for unmarried men may look at a single woman with desire for that is the Biblical nature of things (See Song of Songs; 1 Corinthians 7:9).

[4] Adulterated her: Most render this ‘already committed adultery with her in his heart.’

[5] If your right eye stumbles you: The looking part. Compare this with 1 John 2:16 and the desire of the eyes. The first warning to Adam regarding the fruit of the tree: ‘it was desirable to look upon.’ (Genesis chs 2, 3) There is probably no more desirable sight than an attractive woman. Any sin begins with first seeing something and desiring (coveting) it. Here is the place to say “No!” to that New Person within with its Transformed Mind (Romans 12:1; Ephesians 4:22, 23).

[6] Cut it out: Where are all the one-eyed men? Clearly, all take this to be an exaggerated metaphor even as the fire of Gehenna.

[7] If your right hand stumbles you: The eye first sees and then the hand touches or reaches for the desirable object, even as in the case of Adam and Eve (Genesis chs 2, 3). There is the desire of the eye and the pleasure of feeling those sensations through the fingertips. Sin must be stopped by that ‘lamp of the body,’ the eye. It is preferable to avoid those situations which arouse opportunities for this kind of sin. Certainly pornographic material or entertainment ought to be avoided. The Nazarene Saint, male or female, keep their hands to themselves and on guard against undue familiarity with the opposite sex. Note Mark 9:47: kingdom; Colossians 3:5: deaden; Genesis 3:3: touch (Compare Matthew 18:7-9 stumbling).

[8] Your whole body go to Gehenna: Note it is the “body” which goes to “hell-fire” or Gehenna (Note Matthew 10:28).

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Preceding

Nazarene Commentary Matthew 5:1-12 Nazarene Mountain teachings: Blessed and legal commentaries

Nazarene Commentary Matthew 5:13-16 Salt and Light shining bright

Nazarene Commentary Matthew 5:17-20 – The Nazarene Rabbi’s Commentary on the Torah

Nazarene Commentary Matthew 5:21-26 – 1. The Nazarene’s Commentary on Exodus 20:13

Object of first woe

Next: Matthew 5:31-32 – 3. The Nazarene’s Commentary on Deuteronomy 24:1

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Additional reading

  1. No time for immorality
  2. Liberal and evangelical Christians
  3. Breaking up with a cult
  4. Not making yourselves abominable
  5. John 4 exhortation: The one that broke the mould
  6. When having found faith through the study of the Bible we do need to do works of faith
  7. The works we have to do according to James
  8. Additional comments to the 3rd Letter to the Romans
  9. Additional comments to the Letter to the Romans 4
  10. Is Justification a process?
  11. I can’t believe that … (4) God’s word would be so violent
  12. Brunei introducing a raft of tough sharia punishments
  13. Grave, tomb, sepulchre – graf, begraafplaats, rustplaats, sepulcrum
  14. Sheol, Sheool, Sjeool, Hades, Hell, Grave, Tomb, Sepulchre

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Further reading

  1. Proverbs 5:21 Everything In View
  2. C & C: The Piper Piped and Herodias’ Daughter Danced
  3. Strong Desire
  4. Adultery
  5. One More Re-Hash on This Subject
  6. Getting Tired
  7. Is it considered fornication if a couple is with child?
  8. My Forgiven Story
  9. All Poured Out
  10. Rebuilding broken Me
  11. Naming your Fears
  12. Worldliness Lip Service
  13. Great Expectations
  14. david devlin cheater bozeman montana
  15. Covenant, not contract
  16. david devlin bozeman montana cheater
  17. Do You Have What It Takes To Be a Cheater?
  18. The Enemy of God’s people (Revelation 17-18)
  19. Legal Forgiveness = Forgiveness? in a Divorce Action
  20. If We are Sinful, How Can We be Capable of Doing Good?
  21. The Case of Wandering Eyes
  22. Lust, Men, and Jesus
  23. The Cleaving – (Part 2)
  24. Saying “no” in faith
  25. Missing My Left Hand
  26. The Renewed Mind: When the Impossible Seems Logical
  27. Let God change the way you think in 2017>

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