Mark Twain purportedly quipped, “It ain’t those parts of the Bible that I can’t understand that bother me, it’s the parts that I do understand.”
What Jesus said in his Sermon on the Mount is about as clear as anything in scripture. If we’re honest, though, we have to ask ourselves if we believe and follow what he said. For example, he said in the gospel of Matthew:
You know you shouldn’t commit murder, “But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister will be subject to judgment…Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.” (5:22-23)
You know that you shouldn’t commit adultery, “But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” (5:27-28)
You have heard an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth, “But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well. If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles. Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.” (5:38-42)
You have heard love your neighbor and hate your enemy,”But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.” (5:44)
Of course, there’s much more.
As the father of a son who needed healing said to Jesus: “I do believe; help…my unbelief.” (Mark 9:24)