Last week at our teenage Bible study, we had the kids take parts of Matthew 5 and rewrite them according to modern-day interpretation. They were quite creative.
Original text: Matthew 5:38-42
38 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’[g] 39 But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. 40 And if someone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. 41 If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. 42 Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.
The girls’ version:
If you played Battlefront, you would have heard: “We lost a command post! Take it back!” but I’mma [slang for I’m gonna] say don’t be like that.
If Mrs. [unpopular teacher] takes away essay points for no good reason whatsoever, take it like a man!
If someone cuts in front of you in traffic, don’t honk! (Excessively.)
If your brother stalks you to all your classes, don’t say anything about it. [The big joke is Daniel stalks his little sister at school.]
If someone asks you for lined paper, give it to them. Don’t turn them away. (No matter how tempting it may be.)
Original text: Matthew 5:43-48
43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor[h] and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I tell you: Love your enemies[i] and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46 If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47 And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
The boys’ version (all avid video game players. Their most-played game is League of Legends, so this may not make sense unless you play that game.):
You have heard that it was said, “Friend your carries and ignore the feeders.” But I tell you: Comfort your feeders, pray for those who rage at you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He sends winning streaks and disconnects to all. What reward will you get if you only love your carries? Even randoms do that. And if you only gank for your friends, what are you doing more than others? Do not even baddies do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
If you play LOL, this paragraph is hilarious as it pretty much translates that passage into video-game speak.
We all enjoyed the exercise and discussed what it meant to love your enemies.