For me, this first recorded sermon of Jesus is one of the most important messages in all of the Bible. Take a few minutes to read Matthew 5:1-12 as you consider this post. Think of each “blessed” statement as a step-up an 8-step ladder. Each step is one step closer to the life of a follower of Jesus.
- The first step is to understand that you are actually blessed when you are poor in spirit – flat busted spiritually and when you don’t see any way out.
- When people are this down, they cry about it – Jesus says that you are actually blessed when you mourn.
- When you mourn over being at the bottom, then it makes you meek – knowing that you do not have all the answers. Blessed are the meek.
- Then, you want to know who does have the answers and truth. This is a critical step – do you seek answers from the world or from Jesus, the righteous way – the way the truth and the life – blessed are those who hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they will be filled.
- Then, when you understand what Jesus has done for you in forgiving the sins and wrongs you have and will commit, when He has taken the time (the sentence) you should be serving for your wrongs, then you understand about the mercy He has shown to you by NOT leaving you to suffer what you deserve. This lets you have mercy on others when they hurt you and fall short of what they should do – blessed are the merciful for they shall receive mercy.
- When you understand about giving mercy, it makes your heart pure – like that of Jesus – Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God.
- As you become more like Jesus, you become a person who helps others find and maintain peace – blessed are the peacemakers for they will be called the sons of God – like Jesus. Being a peacemaker is what it means to be a follower of Jesus – helping bring peace to this world and helping people make peace with God and each other.
- Finally, on the 8th step, Jesus tells you that when you become a person who follows Him, who becomes a peacemaker, you will be persecuted by satan and his followers – as he does not want peace but heartache and confusion and strife and suffering and death. When you find yourself being persecuted for “righteous living” then you are also blessed, because this is what happened to Jesus as well.
Be the light and love of Jesus right where you are. Be the salt that brings good flavor to those around you – to those searching for the meaning in life. Later, Dale