Let Your Yes Be Yes

Jesus thought it was important to talk about promises — truthfulness in general and promise-keeping in particular. In today’s passage in Matthew 5 he talks about swearing and oaths, which are really just promises.

The whole Bible is built on covenants, public promises, observed words, and accountability. So what does Jesus teach us specifically in Matthew 5? He is saying if you think you can create levels of truthfulness, you’re wrong. He is saying that “every yes and every no must be as truthful as if you just swore it on a stack of Bibles on network television.” Every yes and every no is observed, because God is the creator and is present with us. This is a radical principle of truthfulness that Jesus teaches us.

This sermon was preached by Dr. Timothy Keller at Redeemer Presbyterian Church on February 14, 1993. Series: Hard Sayings of Jesus 1993. Scripture: Luke Matthew 5:33-37.

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