The Wisdom Of The Beatitudes

   One of the first sermons Jesus gave (or was recorded) was on a mountain. Who would have ever expected someone to say anything like this. Call it remarkable, amazing, cross-cultural, or whatever…. When Jesus spoke, people were amazed, taken back. “No one ever spoke like that!” There is a good reason found in Phil. 2:5-11… He was equal with God, but gave it up just to save mankind. Wisdom beyond comparison.
   The word ‘blessed’ simply means happy. He began his ministry by showing what a true believer is like (or can be).
   It’s as if you take a beam of light and press it through a crystal prism. The light is defused, revealing all the different colors. The order of both the break-up of light and the sermon is by design. He is the Son of God, (John 1:14). The attitudes and characteristics are the basic foundation of the Christians life. It is a life of ‘becoming’ through the power of the indwelling Spirit. Without this sermon… the follower may have power, but has nowhere to go… fruitless and faulty.
   “Blessed (happy) are the poor in spirit; for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Matt. 5:3). 
   The journey begins here. The proud will be saved, can’t be saved. Their ‘cup’ is to full for anything else. Heaven will not be theirs… only to the humble, teachable, moldable. “Jesus loves us as we are, but refuses to leave us that way.” To enter the kingdom, one must break his or her heart. Humility enables one to recognize his sin, and be humbled by grace and love. James said, “God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble… humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord and He will lift you up” (James 4:5,10).
   “Blessed (happy) are they that mourn; for they shall be comforted” (Matt. 5:4).
   Jesus says the opposite of what we would expect. But when your heart is crushed and broken, you always mourn, groan and cry. Like Peter, after his denial of Jesus…when Jesus turned and looked into his eyes… he went out and cried bitterly. Our basic problem comes when life is good and things are going well. We tend to forget God. We use God like a parachute… or a glass which reads, “break in case of emergency”. When trouble comes or death knocks at our door, we look up and cry. Humble people do, proud people don’t.
   “Blessed (happy) are the meek; for they shall inherit the earth” (Matt. 5:5). Break your heart, mourn your sins, receive inward strength – meekness! No, not weakness… but strength… rare quiet strength of character that enables you to stand. Three virtues  are our NEEDS. They come in order, a broken heart – a cry for help – inner peace. 
   (More to come…)

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