The next passage we take a look at may take us a few weeks to get our heads around. Many times in life words have several meanings. Sometimes we think we know what something means only to find out something was lost in the translation. Words can cut to our heart. Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Have you ever lost your temper? Threatened to do something to someone? Gone so far as to say you would take them out? We all lose it and overreact at times. What does it mean when we say things to others? Are words really that important?

Out on the track things happen and when they happen to us we react. We usually do not wait to figure out what really happened before we respond. Racers, in the heat of the moment, have been known to do things they later regret.

The same applies in our life, we say things and direct them at people without knowing all the facts. We use comments that we wouldn’t say to their face. We direct them at them when they are not there. Why is it easier to put someone down when they are not there? Social media has only proven to feed into this.

Think about when you drive in your car. How many times do you direct comments at other drivers? How many of those comments are complimentary? It is a byproduct of the world we live in. We think we know how everyone else should be doing things.

Take a look at this passage and let’s spend some time to explore it.

Matthew 5:21-26, “You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, `Do not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ But 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.

   “Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift.

   “Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is taking you to court. Do it while you are still with him on the way, or he may hand you over to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you may be thrown into prison. I tell you the truth, you will not get out until you have paid the last penny.

If I asked you if you had committed murder you would say no. But take a look at the passage. Jesus says if you even call someone a fool or raca, which means worthless, you have violated this commandment. Murder is not the same as killing. We think of killing as taking someone’s life. Jesus says murder is killing someone’s spirit.

When we tear someone down with words we kill their spirit. We devalue them. God values each one of us the same. In God’s eyes we all are the same. When we do not value what God values we elevate ourselves above Him. We do not have that right.

Jesus tells us that when we do not show others the same value that God does we, in effect, murder them, kill their spirit. Jesus says we do not have the right to do that.

I know this is more far reaching than we have considered when we think about the commandment not to murder and I am sure we haven’t considered the words we use as that harmful, but think about what Jesus is saying. We need to value what God values. We do not have the right to cut down what He has created.

Think about the words we use this week. We say so many things without thinking. Giving some thought to what we say and who we say it to starts the process of learning to value what God values. We need to ask God for forgiveness for the times we cut others down with words. We will explore more of this teaching next week. For now we will stop here.

Until next time, remember God loves you and Jesus is Lord over Auto Racing! God Bless. Remember, that your prayerful support helps us continue this ministry. Thank You.