Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Wednesday with Words: Sermon on the Mount

A few weeks ago I realized that Oswald Chambers wrote more than My Utmost for His Highest.  I probably should have guessed that. I decided to look into one entitled Studies on the Sermon on the Mount. The source text is obviously incredible; however, Oswald's thoughts are to the point.  At less than 100 pages (and super big print) it is short but deep.  It was difficult to just pick a few quotes but here are a few of my favorites.

In keeping with what I am learning/ remembering from studying Charlotte Mason
The Holy Ghost is the only expounder of the teachings of Jesus.  
One of his primary contentions is that the whole Sermon is not understandable, or attainable, without the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.  In the natural man it produces despair.  Oswald asserts that
The Sermon on the Mount is a statement of the life we will live when the Holy Spirit is having His way with us.  
This is not something we "try harder" to accomplish - it is a gift given and we work it out in our daily lives.  As he explains
but as you go on storing your mind with Bible knowledge, the Holy Spirit will bring back to your conscious mind the word you need and apply it to your particular circumstances.  These three things always work together - my moral intelligence, the spontaneous originality of the Holy Spirit, and the setting of a life lived in communion with God. 
Really, this is what CM discusses and calls us to remember as we teach our children.  The Holy Spirit should be their teacher and we should provide them with the Word.

Oswald goes through the text verse by verse.  Many of the thoughts in Utmost are in here as well - as you can imagine. Here are the two issues that struck me most

Ouch!  I don't intercede - I try to correct and often criticize.  He introduces this concept in the context of "judge not, lest ye be judged".  His thoughts are clear
A critical temper is a contradiction to all Our Lord's teaching. 
Oswald talks continually about how the life of faith is a life of obedience.  Is that what I am living out?

The second point starts with this thought:
Over and over again we blame God for His neglect of people by our sympathy with them, we may not put it into words but by our attitude we imply that we are filling up what God has forgotten to do. Never have that idea, never allow it to come into your mind. 
We try to do for them, take care of them, fill in.  Oswald continues:

Yes, if I would be faithful and disciplined in what I know, things would be different.  Not that it depends on me, but that God can work through me if I am doing what he has called me to do. I will be reading the sermon and this devotional for it again and again and again.  Letting it soak into me.

A few years ago we attempted to memorize it (at the time my oldest was probably 5 - yes, I am that crazy mom).  I used Ann Voskamp's guide and although I don't know it word for word (I eventually realized this wasn't happening as a group and I gave up) I do remember it's general outline.

I highly recommend this deep reading.  I had about 15 more quotes I wanted to share but these were the most impactful to me.

See what others are reading at Ladydusk.

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