“Therefore, if you bring your gift to the altar, and there recall that your brother has anything against you, leave your gift there at the altar, go first and be reconciled with your brother, and then come and offer your gift.” Now that is certainly something you don’t hear every day, at least in polite company. If you and I will understand what Jesus is communicating with us fully, we need a little research. In New Testament times (much like today), anger was considered a very powerful emotion that could lead a person into horrible problems. If there were anger in someone’s heart, it would eventually show up in words and actions. The more anger, the more problems. Easy enough, right?
“Settle with your opponent quickly while on the way to court with him.” As we have read throughout the year in several places, Jesus also saw his followers as the light of a fire to the world. Placing a flame of light under a basket would put the fire out. No, like a city high on a hill, the fire should be placed for all to see, especially when it comes to forgiveness and making peace even with the most incorrigible of persons. So, one cannot hide faith by inaction. One must show faith in action for all to see, so those seeing the witness can be brought to faith and praise God.
In essence, Jesus told his followers they cannot have it both ways. One cannot believe as a Christian, yet act as if faith did not matter. Faith leads to action, and the action points to the Kingdom. Are we alive or lifeless? Are we who we say we are? Let’s see how the day progresses.
“Letting go gives us freedom, and freedom is the only condition for happiness. If, in our heart, we still cling to anything – anger, anxiety, or possessions – we cannot be free.” Thich Nhat Hanh