Who we are? Matt 5:1-12

From the previous post, we look at who we are as the people of God. This Sunday our Gospel reading is Matthew 5:1-11, which makes this plain, who we are in Christ.

When Jesus saw the crowds, He went up on the mountain; and after He sat down, His disciples came to Him. He opened His mouth and began to teach them, saying,

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the gentle, for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied. Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
Blessed are those who have been persecuted for the sake of righteousness,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. (Matthew 5:1-11 NAS)the-sermon-on-the-mount-by-harold-copping1

If we look at these words as demands/expectations, they seem almost impossible. Am I merciful? Am I pure in heart? No, that is beyond me. Ideal, yes, but not realistic on my own.

But what if Jesus is the perfect fulfillment of each of these descriptions? What if to know purity in heart is found in Jesus himself? That changes each of these characteristics from demands to descriptions of Jesus. Then those descriptions apply to everyone who believes in Jesus, not by performance but by faith.

Theses descriptions then fit with the poster from the previous post.

About exegete77

disciple of Jesus Christ, husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, teacher, and theologian
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1 Response to Who we are? Matt 5:1-12

  1. William Marks says:

    Holiness cannot originate with me or flow from me. All that I know and experience is filtered by my self-awareness (selfishness). That is how we humans are designed by our Creator. We simply are not holy creatures as God is. My attempts at Holy behavior are temporary and flawed by my self-interest.

    However, that does not excuse my sinful (selfish) thoughts and behaviors. At it’s core, the idea that I can become holy (escape my selfcenteredness) is a sinful deception. I believe that failure to accept this fact is an affront to Almighty God and is at the core of Adam and Eve’s desire to define for themselves what is good and evil.

    What we see in the Beatitudes is that none of us has all of those attributes. This is a statement by The Lord that despite our selfcenteredness, there is hope for us in His mercy, both in and beyond this life.

    If I were able to be Holy as God is Holy, would His mercy and His unmerited love still be valued? Wouldn’t I be guilty of appropriating an attribute of Almighty God as Adam and Eve did? I accept the fact that I am hopelessly self centered and Holiness is always just out of my reach. That is the human condition at its best. May God always be merciful toward His children.

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