Matthew 5: 21″You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘Do not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ 22But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to his brother, ‘Raca,’ is answerable to the Sanhedrin. But anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell.
Dignity is a key concept in Christ. Jesus did not assault the dignity of any human. There were times He directly challenged people to righteousness. He had no problem calling people to account for hidden agendas and false fronts. He did not attack the person as a person. He never called anyone a fool or an idiot or stupid or any such attack. That standard stands for us.
Interesting is the way Jesus looks at one of the ‘ten commandments’. There is a level beyond the surface to which He takes us. It is the heart intent that is most important. It is the beginning of the action in the depth of the heart that Jesus looks to identify. Lusting leads to adultery. Anger and contempt leads to murder. Stop the action at the point of the seed in the heart. That’s His message.
ACT! Look for any bad seeds in your heart. Take a few moments to sift through your thoughts over the last few days. If you have a mate, is there another besides your mate that has taken time in your thoughts in the wrong direction? Have you been unduly angered and contemptuous with someone? Are you miffed at God over something You think He should have done for you? Have you railed at a government official? Now is the time to uproot the seed before it germinates.
PRAY! Father, I’ve got to admit. There are times I am really upset with people acting out of my pattern. Yes, Father, I have my ways. Help me to not be so quick to call them right and others wrong. Help me to see the person separately from the action. Help me to protect the dignity of each human as precious. Help me to look at others as Your creation with an intention for good. Though they may be demonstrating wrongly, help me to look beyond at potential and design. Let me call out goodness for the lives of others in the midst of pain and problems. Help me to be like You.