The Sermon on the Mount

One day as he saw the crowds gathering, Jesus went up on the mountainside and sat down. His disciples gathered around him, and he began to teach them.

The Beatitudes

“God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him,
    for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.
God blesses those who mourn,
    for they will be comforted.
God blesses those who are humble,
    for they will inherit the whole earth.
God blesses those who hunger and thirst for justice,
    for they will be satisfied.
God blesses those who are merciful,
    for they will be shown mercy.
God blesses those whose hearts are pure,
    for they will see God.
God blesses those who work for peace,
    for they will be called the children of God.
10 God blesses those who are persecuted for doing right,
    for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.

11 “God blesses you when people mock you and persecute you and lie about you and say all sorts of evil things against you because you are my followers. 12 Be happy about it! Be very glad! For a great reward awaits you in heaven. And remember, the ancient prophets were persecuted in the same way.

Matthew begins chronicling the events that transpired after the crowds began following Jesus. The crowds were still growing and would have included Jews and gentiles, curiosity seekers and His disciples, both those whom He had personally called and those who were serious about following Him and learning from Him. While all who could hear Him may have listened, it was the ‘disciples’ that He spoke to.

His disciples gathered around him, and he began to teach them.

Matthew 5:1b-2

The lesson or lessons as it would seem, were long and would have given those listening much to consider. This first segment of the lessons, called the “Beatitudes” was a list of ways Jesus’ followers would be blessed by God. The word blessed here does not carry a connotation of being happy but rather of turning out well. In other words, when their attitudes lined up with these expressed qualities – which were basically expressions of what God desired – then the result would be good. They aren’t all easy or even easily understood but the message or lesson Christ was teaching was this: whether here on earth or in heaven with God the blessings of a godly life will be far greater than a life filled with worldly pleasures, ease, or convenience.

One other note ,that I believe is a good take-away for application, is profoundly yet simply this – As His disciples we must be faithful to gather around Him and listen to Him teach. This is the key to the blessings.

If you would like to know more about each of the ‘beatitudes’ you will find helpful information here. – simply click on the verse you want to know more about.

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