Biblical Text: Matthew 5:21-37

I’m going to pat myself on the back here. Takes some guts to title a sermon “Yawn”.

The text is what I usually call Jesus re-upping the 10 commandments, while turning them to 11 on the dial. And if you are reading them the interpretation is rather straight-forward. Having focused on the law last week, and given the basic understanding, I turned this week to how we receive Jesus’ preaching. The focus is on what I label the strangeness of Jesus. We are able to “Yawn” at reading something like “leave the altar immediately” or “cut the body part off” because it is old hat or because it doesn’t get past the surface that this is GOD ALMIGHTY saying this. 2000 years can make any claim venerable. Those hearing Jesus were hearing that claim for the first time. How strange. And it hit them with a crisis. Do you believe it? If you believe it, the preaching demands something deep. Something more than a “yawn.”

I might end this on a questionable story, but it comes from a group that is no longer yawning. Waking from our spiritual slumbers is first hearing anew the claim of messiah.

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