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View Full Version : Matt 10:34-39, what do you make of it?



Agaliha
January 23rd, 2010, 03:28 AM
I always found this passage to be interesting and I never really knew what to make of it. What are your thoughts on it? Is it advocating violence, predicting violence (against the early Christians), or something else entirely? And what about the family thing, is it just about putting God first and all else second or...? How do you interpret this passage?


"Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I came to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a manís enemies will be the members of his household. He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me; and he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. He who has found his life will lose it, and he who has lost his life for My sake will find it." (Matthew 10:34-39 NASB)

& the related:

"If anyone comes to Me, and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple." (Luke 14:26)

LadyValkyrie37
January 23rd, 2010, 03:35 AM
I interpret it as putting God first and all else second.

SnowyMoon
January 23rd, 2010, 08:40 AM
I tend to look at things from an outside view (I was raised Christian, so I have quite a background in it, but I walk my own path). I see a hidden language of The Bible for character building, and to me, this is one of those things. I don't think this means actual physical war for a religion. I see it as Christ being the example of character that people are supposed to work at attaining and implementing in their lives (harder to do than it looks).

That said, sometimes when you are on a path to bettering your life and your character, that means irritating and sometimes disconnecting with the character traits in those around you including family. It happens naturally. Relationships change.

If you were once an alcoholic and quit drinking and then started painting, you will begin to acquire painting friends. Your drinking friends may get irritated with you and heckle you to try to get you back in their loop, etc. Kind of like that. I don't think it means to be physically violent with them. I think it means that there will be spiritual difference that will cause natural strain on relationships. However, according to this path of Character, it is for the good in the end. The change in you for the better forces the others to make a choice. The old drinking friends can either cut you off and keep drinking, or they can work on their own character and join you as friends/family in your new way of life.

On the flip side, if you succumb to the old way of life (poor character) and or take on the old way of life (poor character) just to keep relations rather than standing up for what is good character, you lost and made the wrong choice.

In other words, stand strong on the ground of good character no matter what.

I think that is what it means to me and how I am interpreting it, but I could be wrong. Hope that helps. :)

~*Sacred*~
January 23rd, 2010, 10:04 AM
I tend to look at things from an outside view (I was raised Christian, so I have quite a background in it, but I walk my own path). I see a hidden language of The Bible for character building, and to me, this is one of those things. I don't think this means actual physical war for a religion. I see it as Christ being the example of character that people are supposed to work at attaining and implementing in their lives (harder to do than it looks).

That said, sometimes when you are on a path to bettering your life and your character, that means irritating and sometimes disconnecting with the character traits in those around you including family. It happens naturally. Relationships change.

If you were once an alcoholic and quit drinking and then started painting, you will begin to acquire painting friends. Your drinking friends may get irritated with you and heckle you to try to get you back in their loop, etc. Kind of like that. I don't think it means to be physically violent with them. I think it means that there will be spiritual difference that will cause natural strain on relationships. However, according to this path of Character, it is for the good in the end. The change in you for the better forces the others to make a choice. The old drinking friends can either cut you off and keep drinking, or they can work on their own character and join you as friends/family in your new way of life.

On the flip side, if you succumb to the old way of life (poor character) and or take on the old way of life (poor character) just to keep relations rather than standing up for what is good character, you lost and made the wrong choice.

In other words, stand strong on the ground of good character no matter what.

I think that is what it means to me and how I am interpreting it, but I could be wrong. Hope that helps. :)

I really know nothing of Christianity or the bible, but I read it to give it a try to see what I think it is saying and I was interpreting as exactly what you wrote here. I also thought maybe it might mean that those in your family you are looking down upon, one day you may be that and see what life is like from that point, so love your family unconditionally. I see it all mixed together. I could be completely wrong though, I've never tried to understand anything written in the bible before :weirdsmil

Cunae
January 23rd, 2010, 12:37 PM
I agree with what has been said... it's about total committment to Christ. Not that we should hate our families literally, but in a comparative, figurative way comparing that kind of love to the mere love we feel for one another. A willingness to walk away from those we love most if they compromise our relationship with Christ.

As for the "sword", I've always related those statements to truth. The Bible often refers to truth as a sword.

My take.

LostSheep
January 23rd, 2010, 12:52 PM
I tend to look at things from an outside view (I was raised Christian, so I have quite a background in it, but I walk my own path). I see a hidden language of The Bible for character building, and to me, this is one of those things. I don't think this means actual physical war for a religion. I see it as Christ being the example of character that people are supposed to work at attaining and implementing in their lives (harder to do than it looks).
Indeed, I think that Jesus very much talked in terms of metaphor and parable and suchlike. I think he's thinking of his teachings as being a sword to cut through the complacency and stagnation that he saw the religious establishment, in particular, as having got into. "He who has found his life will lose it" meaning those that have settled down comfortably with the establishment and don't want to rock the boat.

SnowyMoon
January 23rd, 2010, 01:03 PM
...As for the "sword", I've always related those statements to truth. The Bible often refers to truth as a sword.

My take.

Yes, and when I mix that with the common use of the sword as a symbol of action, there you go; truth in action. Action=daily living and daily choices. Is that not then living life with your focus toward the finish line/goal (Christlike character in my interpretation) and pulling those behind you forward as you move through life this way.

The way I see this is that this is truly loving the others who are behind (struggling) in their character development because in this way you encourage them to move forward rather than staying where they are. If you were to compromise your direction and go backward to keep the peace for the moment, is that really loving them or is it serving your own personal need to be accepted (enabling)? In the end, that hurts you and them. The first choice makes you better in character and gives those you love the chance to do the same since you are leading in example. They see what you are doing and thus are presented with a choice for themselves. Sure, there may be trouble for a while when those lagging behind get uncomfortable, but this way they have the choice. They are uncomfortable because they have been presented with the choice to work on themselves and improve their own lives or stay as they are without you. That is not always comfy. Sure, not everyone will make the choice in the end, but the choice was there...:)

Oh, sometimes I really have trouble putting into words the thoughts I am thinking. :weirdsmil

SnowyMoon
January 23rd, 2010, 01:04 PM
Indeed, I think that Jesus very much talked in terms of metaphor and parable and suchlike. I think he's thinking of his teachings as being a sword to cut through the complacency and stagnation that he saw the religious establishment, in particular, as having got into. "He who has found his life will lose it" meaning those that have settled down comfortably with the establishment and don't want to rock the boat.

Yes, yes. This. ^^^^ :uhhuhuh:

Lahmi
January 27th, 2010, 11:32 PM
I agree with what has been said... it's about total committment to Christ. Not that we should hate our families literally, but in a comparative, figurative way comparing that kind of love to the mere love we feel for one another. A willingness to walk away from those we love most if they compromise our relationship with Christ.

As for the "sword", I've always related those statements to truth. The Bible often refers to truth as a sword.

My take.:)
agreed

john.a
January 31st, 2010, 02:23 AM
I must admit that this line intellectually humbles me. But if anything, I believe it is another example that our Lord knew exactly who He was and what He was and is hinting at it, with a loving smile: only three Persons have the unique divine right to pitch themselves against the closest things to a man's heart and still demand to be placed above all else.

Chicory_Witch
January 31st, 2010, 02:31 AM
I've long viewed the christian God as a selfish prick and reading those lines in earlier years were rather painful and awful when taken more literally.

Knowing now that the context is a little more... symbolic, it resembles the huge commitment people should take in Christianity, not the half %&!-ing crap a lot of people take for face value today.

Gaudior
March 27th, 2011, 03:38 PM
I always see that as Jesus explaining that his teachings aren't very popular; when I was still a Christian I remember explaining this to a young woman who thought it meant Jesus was violent (well, to be fair, he did kick butt in the "lost" books). His teachings and paths would tear families apart and cause dissention...maybe even violence against one another; and it has, and still does to this day.

The "sword" part is simple to explain; the sword is being used to divide in this instance. The sword isn't peaceful in this case either, though...because it will end up dividing friends and families.