It is Beneficial For You to Cut Off the Cause of Adultery Today Than Suffer Judgment on the Last Day

“For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell. . . . For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body go into hell” (Matt. 5:29-30). Jesus says that you should take out your eye if it causes you to sin, because it is better for you to lose your eye today, than to lose your whole body in hell on the last day. You should cut off your hand, because it is better for you to lose your hand today, than to lose your whole body in hell on the last day.

Jesus believes in hell. He teaches the loss of the whole body and soul in hell. We thus learn that our sinful actions today bring eternal consequences on the last day. Our present actions bring eschatological consequences. If we do not cut off the root cause of sin today, we will suffer the loss of our whole body and soul in hell on the last day.

In the Greek, it reads, sumpherei gar soi hina apoletai en ton melon sou, literally, “it is better for you that one of the parts of your body perish” (NASB). There are the words, “for you”—“it is better for you.” The word, “better” (sumphero), means, “confer a benefit, be advantageous or profitable or useful.” (Gingrich). It is present indicative. It can be translated literally, “it is profitable continually for you.”

Hence, the text says, “It is advantageous constantly for you, that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell.” Jesus is saying that it is more beneficial for you that you lose on body part today than to lose your whole body in hell on the last day. Frederick Dale Bruner wrote, “In sexual purity decisiveness is everything . . . Better to go limping into heaven than leaping into hell.”

It is more beneficial always for you to cut off the cause of sin in your life today, and thus save your soul, than to lose your whole soul in hell on the last day.

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