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Audio Sermons

Matthew 5:1-12

  The Beatitudes

Life B-P Church Worship Service, 2 July 2017

Text: Matthew 5:1-12

 

§  In the Sermon on the Mount, our Lord Jesus gives us a picture of those who are citizens of His kingdom; He sets forth the character and conduct expected of His disciples.

§  Jesus begins His Sermon by declaring a certain kind of person “blessed” (5:3-10). In the Beatitudes, Jesus sets forth 8 principal marks of the Christian character. It is the “Be-attitudes”, not the “Do-attitudes”.

 

1.   The Beatitudes reveal to us what True Blessedness consists of 

§  The word translated “blessed” means “happy”. But Jesus is not talking about our emotional feelings. The word “blessed” refers to God's approval and favour upon those who are citizens of His kingdom. Jesus is drawing a picture of those characters upon whom divine favour and approval rest.

§  Who are those who are blessed?  

-          The 1st beatitude is pronounced on those who are poor in the spirit – those who are conscious of their own unworthiness and helplessness before God (Isaiah 6:5; Luke 18:9-14). The first step in blessedness is a realization of one’s own spiritual helplessness.

-          The 2nd beatitude is pronounced on those who mourn – it speaks of a man who is broken-hearted or sorrowful concerning his own miserable sinful condition (Psalm 32:1-2).

-          The 6th beatitude is pronounced on the pure in heart. A pure heart has no hypocrisy, no guile, and no hidden motives. It is more than an external purity of behaviour; it is an internal purity of the soul (Hebrews 12:14; Psalm 51:10; 24:3-4).

§  True blessedness is not found in what we have but in what we are before God. The one who is accepted in the sight of God is the one who is truly blessed. True blessedness is found in a right relationship with God (Matthew 16:26).

 

2.   The Beatitudes show us what a True Disciple of Christ is

§  The Beatitudes are a description of what it looks like to “be” a disciple of Jesus Christ. The Beatitudes are primarily addressed to Jesus’ disciples – those who came to Him to be taught of Him. A “disciple” is a person who follows Christ (Matthew 4:19; 16:24).

§  The Beatitudes are a description of the character of Christ and we are to follow Him and be like Him.

-          The 3rd beatitude is pronounced on the meek. Meekness is 1 of noblest qualities of Christ’s character (Matthew 11:28-30; 1 Peter 2:21-23).

-          The 4th beatitude is pronounced on those who show mercy to others. Mercy is a characteristic of God and of Christ His Son (Lamentations 3:22; Matthew 18:23-35).

-          The 8th beatitude speaks of those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake. To be righteous is to be like Christ; He is the Righteous One (1 John 2:1).

§  The Beatitudes provide a description of what a Christian is meant to be. They pointedly reveal the differences that exist between the Christian and the non-Christian. As Christians, we are to be stamped by Christ, not by the culture around us, or by our tendencies within us.

 

3.   The Beatitudes remind us of our True Citizenship

§  The Beatitudes describe the character of God’s kingdom (5:3,10). In the NT, the “kingdom of God” and the “kingdom of heaven” are used interchangeably. Jesus proclaimed that “the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matthew 4:17) because He is the King. Where Jesus reigns, there the kingdom of heaven is already present (Luke 17:20-21).

§  The kingdom of heaven is present in the hearts of believers who have submitted their lives to Christ and in whom He reigns. Living as citizens of the kingdom of God requires our obedience to God’s Word and will. A happy Christian is one who obeys, loves and serves Christ, his King.

§  Christ the King will come again one day to reign over the earth and the kingdom of heaven will then be on earth (Revelation 11:15). A happy Christian is one who lives as a pilgrim and stranger on this earth, and in the light of Christ’s soon return to reign over the earth.

 

 

Questions for Reflection

1.      Restate the Beatitudes in your own words. Describe how you viewed being “blessed” by God in the past. How has that changed?

2.      How different is a Christian from the people of the world? Why is this distinction important?

 

3.      How do you view yourself in the light of the Beatitudes? Do your attitudes and behaviour reflect your beliefs?

Vision & Mission

 

To build a united church family that is committed to making disciples through Salvation, Sanctification and Service, to the glory of God.

Verse for the Week

October 15 & 22 - The Cost of Discipleship

For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. Matthew 16:25