"What Did Jesus Say?" (Matthew 5:1-12)
Last week, we studied Exodus 20.
The first 4 Commandments are SACRED because of our love for God:
a) God is sacred
b) God's Place is sacred
c) God's Name is sacred
d) God's Day is sacred
The last 6 are SACRED because of our love for others:
e) The home is sacred
f) Life is sacred
g) Love is sacred
h) Property is sacred
i) Truth is sacred
j) Desires are sacred
It is impossible to keep the last 6 Commandments if you do not keep the first 4.
David knew the Ten Commandments and said in one of the Psalms,
"Let me not wander from Your Commandments".
In Psalm 19:7-8, he tells how he felt about the Commandments:
"The Law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul.
The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple.
The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart.
The Commands of God are radiant, giving light to the eyes."
In this paper, I want us to look at (and absorb) 'What did Jesus say'!
In Matthew 5, 6, and 7, Jesus covers most of these 10 Commandments,
plus much more that we need.
We will see what He says under 3 headings:
1) Our attitudes (Matthew 5:1-12)
2) Our atmosphere (influence around us) (Matt. 5:13-16)
3) Our actions (Matt. 5:17-48)
THE BLESSED ATTITUDES WE MUST HAVE~ (Matthew 5:1-12)
Attitudes are extremely important for whatever is happening in our lives!
Otherwise, why did Jesus begin The Sermon on the Mount with the Blessed Attitudes?
The first 5 deal with our attitude toward God (vs. 1-4)
1) BLESSED ARE THE POOR IN SPIRIT FOR THEIR'S IS THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN
(the rule of God in your heart) Vs. 3
To be poor in spirit, you must realize your utter and complete dependence on God.
To do His Will is to depend upon His Power.
We must empty self 'of self' and be conscious of our lack of God.
God has 2 thrones: One in the Highest Heaven and one in the Lowliest Heart.
We MUST pray the Prayer of Relinquishment and let go and let God have His wonderful Will and Way!
By our lives, we affirm Matthew 19:26:
"With us, things are impossible, but with God, all things are possible."
"We seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness in our lives." (Matt. 6:33)
We are helpless, but depending on "all power is given unto us". (Matt. 28:19-20)
Therefore, we are very hopeful and useful.
2) BLESSED ARE THEY THAT MOURN FOR THEY SHALL BE COMFORTED~ (Verse 4)
Blessed is the person who is desperately sorry for his own sin and his own unworthiness.
God helps us to have the 'mourning of conviction' (II Cor. 7:10)
the 'mourning of commitment' (Isaiah 53:3-4)
and the 'mourning of compassion'
(Psalm 126:5-6...Romans 9:1-3... 10:1-3...Jeremiah 9:1)
When William Boothe was asked 'what is the secret of revival', he replied, "Try tears".
3) BLESSED ARE THE MEEK FOR THEY SHALL INHERIT THE EARTH~ (Verse 5)
Meekness does NOT mean 'weakness'.
Moses and Jesus are referred to in the Bible as 'meek' and neither was 'weak'!
Meekness means 'to be controlled' .....it also means 'gentle', 'humble' and 'considerate'....'yielded' and 'patient'.
4) BLESSED ARE YOU WHEN YOU HUNGER AND THIRST AFTER RIGHTEOUSNESS FOR YOU SHALL BE FILLED ~ (Vs. 6)
When tempted, Jesus said to satan,
"Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from God."
I've preached many times that the Christian life is 'Thanks, Thirst and Trust'.
I love Isaiah 55:1-3 and Psalm 63 which say, 'My soul thirsts for God'.
'Shall be filled' expresses the feeding, filling and fattening of cattle with grain.
God fills the seeking soul, in the fulness of salvation. We need to feed on the Word of God and fill up with God's goodness and grace, otherwise we will 'run on empty' and will not get very far!
As you study The Ten Commandments and The Sermon on the Mount,
remember Jesus' words in Matthew 5:20:
"Except your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the Scribes and Pharisees
(the Law), you will not enter Heaven."
We know that the New Testament teaches 'right standing with God' comes through repentance toward God....and faith in Jesus Christ.
I believe that the key in all of these is 'Submission'.
5) BLESSED ARE THE MERCIFUL FOR THEY SHALL OBTAIN MERCY~ (Vs. 7)
Mercy deals with pain, misery and distress of human life. Mercy is 'active pity'.
Micah 6:8 where mercy is an element of true righteousness.
Also Matt. 23:23 where mercy is lacking in Pharisaic righteousness.
Mercy is the sympathetic ability to suffer with a person, weep with people,
but also help to meet their needs.
I love the little poem:
'He drew a circle that shut me out....A heretic, a thing to flout.
But love and me, had the wit to win...We drew a circle that took him in.'
6) BLESSED ARE THE PURE IN HEART, FOR THEY SHALL SEE GOD~ (Vs. 8)
Pure identifies 'singleness of heart'...the honesty which is free from hidden motive of selfish interest.
It was part of Jesus' Good News for the poor and for all of us.
We need to be 'Pure in body' (Romans 12:1-3)
'Pure in mind' (Phil. 4:8...Matt. 5:27-28...Gen.6:5...Proverbs 23:7)
The Bible also says in Ephesians 4:29 for us to be 'Pure in conduct'.
7) BLESSED ARE THE PEACEMAKERS, FOR THEY SHALL BE CALLED THE CHILDREN OF GOD~ (Vs. 9)
Notice that it says, 'Peacemakers'...not 'Peace lovers'.
We are to work at it: we can't just 'wish it'.
The real Peacemakers are true believers in (and followers of) The Prince of Peace.
The Peacemakers seek to effect reconciliation between enemies.
(James 4:1-3 and John 14:27)
This has to start at home, by 'Christ-like love' and reach on out to the ends of the earth, with what we call 'World Missions'.
8) BLESSED ARE THEY WHO ARE PERSECUTED FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS SAKE~ (Vs. 10)
'Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice and be exceeding glad for great is your reward in Heaven, for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.'
This Scripture was made very clear to me in Chung Nee, Korea at an early morning Prayer meeting. Pastor Ahn spoke about the earlier persecutions of the Koreans by several other countries. His main theme was about the Christ-like attitudes of the Korean people and how God had blessed with the increase of Christianity in Korea.
There WILL be persecution of peacemakers (here and abroad),
but verse 12 tells us to 'rejoice for we are in great company'.
Missions is truly our mission...and it is a mission of love.
By rejoicing in the midst of persecution, we have additional opportunities to witness.
Jesus set a great example for us, for what He said...was followed by what He did.
We as His disciples must 'talk the talk and walk the walk'.
I'd like to close with this prayer that was in a leaflet from Daily Bread:
'Father in Heaven, all too often we've been people with an attitude that doesn't reflect the likeness of Your Son.
Please do through us what we haven't been able to do for ourselves.
Let us reflect the mind and attitudes of Your Son....
for Your honor, for His sake, for our need, and for the good for all who know us'
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