I have an odd phone number for this area. It constantly confuses people. It is a South Carolina number, and transposes the southern Indiana area code into the middle of the number.

Numerous times, I have given someone my phone number, only to have the person say something along the lines of, "Well, that sure is a weird number." Recently, I had someone change the number I had given. I gave my number to a restaurant so that I could be notified when a table was available. After giving my number, the young lady said, "Ok, I'll call xxx-xxx-xxxx when we're ready." I attempted to politely interject that this was not my number. On several occasions, people have come close to arguing with me, as if the veracity of my phone numer is unfathomable.

Sometimes, change is good. However, there are other times when things should not be changed. In the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus corrects the religious leaders on several occasions. In Matthew 5:43-46, Jesus says, "You have heart that it was said, 'You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust."

Jesus states that it has been said, "You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy." Yet the Scriptures never say to hate the enemy. This is clearly an example of someone making a change. How could this have been said if it is never found in the Old Testament?

The sentiment of hating the enemy can be found in some Jewish tradition and Greek sources. It could be the case that this is what Jesus is referring to. It certainly seems more natural, and perhaps even easier, to hate an enemy. But this is not what God says to do.

Oftentimes, we change something when it seems odd to us. When something just doesn't seem to fit, we might be inclined to change it. When we do this with the Scriptures, we are essentially assuming the place of God. We are acting as though we are the creator who knows best. Changing a phone number is really not that big of deal. But, changing God's Word is a problem of catastrophic consequences.