What are two examples of rhetorical devices from the book of Matthew, chapter 5?

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In Matthew 5, Jesus begins His Sermon on the Mount, and He uses plenty of rhetorical devices to catch and hold His hearers' attention and to present His message in a way people will understand and remember.

In verses 3–10, Jesus presents a series of beatitudes, and He uses parallelism and repetition in them. “Blessed are ...,” He begins, and then He lists a particular group like the “poor in spirit” or the merciful or the meek. Then He presents a second clause to wrap up each beatitude: “For they will ...” followed by some benefit. The technical name for this type of repetition is anaphora, and such a technique is useful for both emphasis and cataloging ideas.

Anaphora appears again in verses 13 and 14 with “You are the salt of the earth” and “You are the light of the world.” Notice the parallel structure and the repetition here. These also present vivid metaphors that Jesus uses to show His followers how they must present themselves to the world in their discipleship. They are to be salt, to preserve what is good and true and beautiful. They are to be light to illuminate God's will and to give glory to God.

Jesus also uses a form of synecdoche when He says that “not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law” until all is finished. He uses the smallest letter and the least stroke to stand for the whole law, the part for the whole. That is synecdoche.

Finally, Jesus uses contrast as a rhetorical device when He presents what His audience has heard people say about murder, adultery, divorce, and oaths and then tells them what He says about these issues. For instance, people say that murderers are liable to judgment, but, in contrast, Jesus says that even those who are angry with and insult their neighbors are liable to judgment. With each point of contrast, Jesus heightens the moral standards of the law to the level of His own expectations.

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