Guilt and shame do not lead to repentance, but the conviction of the Holy Spirit does. Love and kindness open the hearts of people to receive the Word. The Word is Christ. He said, “Neither do I judge you. Go forth and sin no more.” He is the one who delivers from sin.
In Jesus’ time, the nation of Israel was under Roman rule. The Israelites were allowed to live there and practice their faith for the most part, but they had to pay taxes to Caesar and obey the Roman laws.
To the Israelites, the Romans were evil and ungodly. They had no place ruling over God’s chosen people in God’s chosen nation. That land had been promised to Moses and his descendants when God brought them out of Egypt. Their very presence in the land was blasphemous.
One of the Roman laws stated that any man could be required to drop what he was doing and carry a Roman soldier’s equipment for him for up to a mile. In the sermon on the mount, with his followers gathered around him, Jesus referenced that law and told his followers what they should do in that case:
“If anyone forces you to go…
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