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Who Jesus calls 'Blessed'

Discussion in 'Thoughts for Today' started by Nanon, Sep 23, 2014.

  1. We're starting a series of sermons at the church I attend on the Beatitudes.
    I appreciate the thought the pastor had in his introductory sermon that
    focused on who Jesus calls the blessed.

    In the Old Testament, people were thought to be blessed according to how
    they prospered (by outward appearance). And lack (in any form) was seen
    as God's displeasure. Prosperity could be worn like a badge of perfect law-
    keeping.

    However, under the New Covenant, 'prosperity' has nothing to do with who
    the truly blessed are. The weak, poor, and lacking can be truly rich in the life
    Jesus supplies in these outward situations.
     
    JG27_chili likes this.
  2. Sounds like a cool study!
     
    Nanon likes this.
  3. Blessed Are the Poor In Spirit
    (series thoughts by pastor)

    In referencing the 'poor', Jesus had in mind the thought of those
    on the fringes of society as well as those who realize their complete
    spiritual lack. He reveals Himself to such as these.

    The 'poor' also refers to those whose character is marked by
    humility. In the Old Covenant force was used in ministry. Under
    the New Covenant, however, gentleness is the way the Spirit of
    God deals with people. God (and His power) is revealed through
    the gentle.
     
  4. Those Who Mourn

    Mourning is the expression of deep inward grief and is
    associated with the 'poor in spirit'... those who grieve
    over their personal spiritual lack. They also mourn
    over the sin (and it's consequences) of the church, or
    of society. This mourning is a continual one that is
    comforted by God's blessing.
     
  5. I preached on this this year! :) :) :)
     
  6. (y)... that's pretty awesome! Did you preach on 'those who mourn', or the beatitudes in general.
    (I'd love to hear the thoughts you had in your sermon...)
     
  7. The Meek

    'Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.'

    In Jesus' days on earth, the land owners had power and a voice. They often were corrupted
    by it, and exploited or oppressed those who did not. The meek are compared to these lacking
    as having no rights.

    Of all the descriptions Jesus could have used in describing Himself, He chose the words
    'meek and lowly'. When He was reviled, He did not revile in turn. He wasn't so busy
    defending Himself that He couldn't give Himself. Meekness is the defining quality of
    spiritual influence.
     
  8. Sanctify the LORD of hosts himself; and let him beyour fear, and let him be your dread. Isiah 8:13
     
    Nanon likes this.
  9. The Reward of Righteousness

    'Blessed are those who hunger and thirst after righteousness,
    for they shall be filled.' (Matthew 5:6)

    The ESV translates 'filled' as satisfied. The many who look for satisfaction
    in the ways of the world remain hungry and thirsty. Jesus taught we will
    be satisfied in looking to Him... to be like Him, by His power.
     
  10. The Merciful

    'Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.' (Matthew 5:7)

    One of the definitions of merciful is the idea of humanitarian activity. In the context of
    the beatitudes however, 'mercy' is a way of responding to how we are treated. It is an
    overflow of the mercy we have received from God, as believers.
     
  11. The Pure of Heart

    'Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.' (Mt. 5:8)

    'Pure' of heart often implies a clean, sinless heart. But in the context of
    the beatitudes, it speaks of an undivided heart... a heart focused on God
    and His way. These 'see' God... not only in the hereafter, but in the here
    and now. They experience the power and presence of God.

    With this in mind, may David's prayer (of Psalm 86:11) be ours:
    'Teach me thy way, O LORD; I will walk in thy truth: unite my heart to
    fear thy name.'
     
    Via Cassian likes this.
  12. Making Peace

    'Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.'

    Bonds of relationship are important in God's kingdom, and the one who
    nurtures peace is known to be a son of God.

    Charles Spurgeon says this:
    "The verse which precedes it speaks of the blessedness of 'the pure in heart, for they shall see God.' It is well that we should understand this. We are to be 'first pure, then peaceable.' Our peaceableness is never to be a compact with sin, or an alliance with that which is evil. We must set our faces like flints against everything which is contrary to God and his holiness. That being in our souls a settled matter, we can go on to peaceableness towards men." (Spurgeon)
     
  13. Adding these verses to the thoughts on peacemaking (and trusting
    the promise of fruit as I hide myself in the life of the Spirit in
    situations I face that 'peacemaking' will influence... eternally).

    James 3:17-18
    17) But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable,
    gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without
    partiality, and without hypocrisy.
    18) And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make
    peace.
     
  14. The Persecuted

    In this last sermon on those Jesus calls blessed, several points
    stand out.

    Matthew 5:10-12
    10) Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake:
    for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
    11) Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you,
    and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
    12) Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in
    heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

    It may be commonly believed that the believer is always 'protected' from harm
    in their walk with God. The truth is that trouble often follows the true believer,
    not because of human mistakes they make, but in opposition to righteousness.
    Persecution is not mainly from the secular world, but from 'religious' groups
    that do not have the life of God in them.

    Though personal physical harm can be part of 'persecution', it is more often seen
    in stabs of words hurled in accusation and malicious gossip of true believers.
    Jesus taught there is a special reward for the persecuted. And on earth, influence is
    given to those who are chased down for the sake of God's living righteousness, seen
    in personal lives of believers.
     
  15. (Adding information left out in first draft of this post. It is contained in the quote.)
     

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