FYI - check back later for my King Tut/Ancient Egypt post & photos. I didn't get to finish working on it yesterday because we had a huge thunderstorm that lasted pretty much the whole day and night, so I didn't spend much time online. (I don't like being on the computer during a lightning storm because I have a cheap surge protector).
But speaking of thunderstorms and Ancient Egypt...yesterday felt like the "7th Plague" around here, because it rained and hailed so hard, that it sounded like golf balls hitting the roof! lol.
Wednesday, October 6th, 2010
"If . . . you are bringing your gift to the altar and you there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar, and go away; first make your peace with your brother, and then, when you have come back, offer up your gift" (Matthew 5:23, 24)
The "gift" that Jesus mentioned was any offering presented at the temple in Jerusalem. For example, animal sacrifices were important because they were then part of the worship rendered to Jehovah by his people. However, Jesus stressed something of greater importance—making peace with an offended brother before offering a gift to God. "Make your peace" means 'to bring about a reconciliation.' From this saying of Jesus, we learn that our way of dealing with others has a direct bearing on our relationship with Jehovah. (1 John 4:20) Indeed, offerings made to God in ancient times were meaningless if the one making them did not treat fellow humans properly.—Micah 6:6-8.
(Watchtower issue: 2/15/09, 2:3-5)
I just realized how this Scripture could even be used to demonstrate how offensive and wrong "nationalism" is to God, since Christians have "brothers" all over the world. And the nations of the world are in a perpetual state of "offense" on account of people not being willing to reconcile and make peace with one another
Here's the extra Scriptural reference:
"With what shall I confront Jehovah? [With what] shall I bow myself to God on high? Shall I confront him with whole burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will Jehovah be pleased with thousands of rams, with tens of thousands of torrents of oil? Shall I give my firstborn son for my revolt, the fruitage of my belly for the sin of my soul? He has told you, O earthling man, what is good. And what is Jehovah asking back from you but to exercise justice and to love kindness and to be modest in walking with your God?"
You can see what a serious matter this is in God's eyes when you consider how difficult and problematic this might be for an Israelite coming to worship at the temple with a calf or ram. They might also be traveling with their wife and young children (as well as the "live" animal for sacrifice). So they would need to readjust their plans and make arrangements for someone to watch their sacrificial animal while they took the time to go and look for their offended brother to "make peace" with him. That could be quite an ordeal...showing why it's not a matter to be taken lightly.