Matthew 5:1-12 The Beatitudes


Jesus went up on elevated land, probably more of a hill than a mountain, because he sought a greater place from which to address the crowds. It was custom to teach while sitting. Jesus began to speak what would become known as the Sermon on the Mount.

The beatitudes offer directives for the Christian life. They do not distinguish between those who mourn and those who are peacemakers. Christians must mourn and be repentant for sin as well be peacemakers. One of the beatitudes may strike at the heart of one Christian because it relates to the gift he was given by God. For instance, one who was given the ability to make peace among others can find joy in the promise that he will be called a son of God. Also, the beatitudes show a contrast between the way of the world and the way of God. A Christian may find that his or her gentleness, while ignored and mocked by the world, is found pleasing and exalted with God.

Blessed means much more than “happy” or “fortunate”. To be blessed is to recieve divine favor as God’s children. God blesses us because he loves us, so to be blessed is also to be loved. God’s children are precious and sanctified unto Him. The Beatitudes can be read and understood within this context. Those who mourn shall recieve divine favor in God’s comfort. Loved by God are His children who mourn, and they will be comforted. Precious to God are the gentle, and they shall inherit the earth. Sanctified are those who seek righteouness, for they will find it in God. Sanctified are the merciful, because God will give them mercy.

To be poor in spirit is to be humble and admit we are sinners. Our acknowledgment of our need for God’s grace through Jesus allows us to inherit the kingdom of heaven.

Those who mourn over sin can can find comfort now in God’s grace through his son Jesus, and have eternal life. Those who mourn over loss can find emotional comfort in God, their Father.

To be meek is to have a gentle, quiet spirit, a product of the humility by which we recieve Jesus. The meek do not think themselves better than others, are not provoked to anger easily, and endure their trials with patience. It is not a weakness, it is not a surrender of principles or rights, or a cowering away,  but it is a strength in God. The Earth belongs to God, and from it he gives to his children. After the final days God will create a new Earth, which his children will inherit.

To hunger and thirst for righteousness is to crave God in a world of sin and chaos. It is a desparate cry for salavation from evil. Many walk the world trying to fill an emptiness that can only be filled by God, but those that seek Him, shall be filled, for only God is truly righteous.

The merciful show compassion to those who have wronged them. We offend God in our sinning, but he shows us mercy and grants us eternal life through Jesus, even though we do not deserve it. We have to show mercy to receive God’s mercy.
The pure in heart are those who give their hearts to God. They seek what is holy, as God is holy. They love and do not hate, and abhor sin. Only through Christ it may the heart be purified, and only through Christ can we see God.
The peacemakers understand the cause of chaos is covetousness, and set their worldy desires aside. Theyforgive those who have wronged them, and do not hold grudges or relaliate in evil. In this, they will be recognized as students of Christ, who obey their Father in heaven, and will be called His children.
Those who pursue righteousness and follow Jesus walk against the culture of the world, and therfore they suffer persecution. We may be insulted and accused of being bigots, narrow-minded, liars, hateful, and even dangerous. While in this world we may suffer, it is only temporary. God gives to us His kingdom, which is eternal, and far greater than the world.
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