You know the commandment which says, “Be faithful in marriage.” But I tell you that if you look at another woman and want her, you are already unfaithful in your thoughts. If your right eye causes you to sin, poke it out and throw it away. It is better to lose one part of your body, than for your whole body to end up in hell. If your right hand causes you to sin, chop it off and throw it away! It is better to lose one part of your body, than for your whole body to be thrown into hell.
Again Jesus goes straight to our inner life, to the heart. Adultery is an external behaviour that people can avoid (as with murder), but Jesus is talking here about inner lusts, the cultivation of desire for wrong relationships. In a grotesque enlargement of the law (gouging eyes, chopping off hands) Jesus makes the point that even doing these things would not guarantee a heart free from lusts. The problem isn’t eyes or hands, it’s in the heart. Jesus invites us to give our hearts to something much bigger – love for God and appropriate love for other people.
Ask God to enlarge your heart today – to receive love and grace from God and for a rightness of heart that loves and values all people in right ways.
“Love is not merely affectionate feeling, but a steady wish for the loved person's ultimate good as far as it can be obtained.”
Lord Jesus, our Saviour, let us come to you.
Our hearts are cold; Lord, warm them with your selfless love.
Our hearts are sinful; cleanse them with your precious blood.
Our hearts are weak; strengthen them with our joyous Spirit.
Our hearts are empty; fill them with your divine presence.
Lord Jesus, our hearts are yours; possess them always and only for yourself.