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Friday, November 16, 2012


Now when Jesus saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, and he began to teach them.

He said:
"Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn,
for they will be comforted.
Blessed are the meek,
for they will inherit the earth.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
for they will be filled.
Blessed are the merciful,
for they will be shown mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart,
for they will see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they will be called children of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

"Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
(Matthew 5:1-12)

The Beatitudes are Jesus’ teachings of how he wants us to live—a life modeled after him—having Jesus’ heart (mourning for the human condition, being meek, hungering and thirsting for righteousness, being merciful, being pure in heart, being a peacemaker, being persecuted).

The Beatitudes are about understanding at a soul level that we are unworthy of the God’s love, grace and mercy. It’s about living with gratitude because God loves us anyway, grants us grace anyway. Is merciful to us anyway. Even though—especially since—we don’t deserve it.

The Beatitudes are about submission to God; being humbled; knowing that we are insignificant in the grand scheme of things; but God loves us anyway.

The Beatitudes are about being merciful to others because God is merciful to us.

The Beatitudes are about living like Christ in all things, no matter how difficult; no matter how opposed it is to our personal nature; no matter, no matter.

Jesus never promised life would be easy when we followed him. In fact, he specifically said it would be hard. But there are rewards. Blessings. Given freely, not as brownie points but because we have a God who loves us unconditionally and blesses us abundantly, smiling on us when we turn our hearts to Him and when we become like Him in the tiniest way.

The application of the Beatitudes, is to follow Jesus’ example. Jesus temporarily set aside his divinity and became human. We must set aside our humanity—our sinful inclinations and worldly ways of thinking. We must recognize that nothing we can do on our own will save us. Only God can do that. And when we accept that truth and live accordingly, we are blessed.

We just need that "can do" attitude; that "to be" attitude.

PRAYER: Jesus, thank you for your example of living and for preserving for us some of your precious sermons. Thank you for making us teachable and for revealing truths to us through your parables and teachings. Help us apply your truths in a way that points others to you. Amen.

WHAT ABOUT YOU? Which of the Beatitudes spoke loudest to you? Why?



lynnmosher said...

Carol, I'm sorry I haven't been by sooner to comment on your series. All the *be's* are great but I think the three that stand out the most for me are the ones for those that mourn, those that hunger, and those that are peacemakers. Such a great series, Carol. They give me hope and bless me. Thank you!

chris said...

I need to beat the humble drum constantly to keep myself from thinking it's all about me. Sign me up for a heavy dose of meekness Carol!!

From Carols Quill said...

@ Lynn - thank you, Lynn. I've learned so much from this study. All those years I'd skimmed over Matthew 5 without understanding their depth. Glad you enjoyed the series.

From Carols Quill said...

@ Chris - the "humble drum"? Oh, I love that image. It's so contrary! And therefore so perfectly said.