Introduction to the Sermon on the Mount
Now when Jesus saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, 2 and he began to teach them.
3 “Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
4 Blessed are those who mourn,
for they will be comforted.
5 Blessed are the meek,
for they will inherit the earth.
6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
for they will be filled.
7 Blessed are the merciful,
for they will be shown mercy.
8 Blessed are the pure in heart,
for they will see God.
9 Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they will be called children of God.
10 Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
11 “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. 12 Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
You must set conditions in order to receive blessings
A blessing is to receive what you want. This includes both physical blessings and spiritual blessings. The absolute principle to receiving blessings is to set the condition upon which to receive them. Gaining blessings is just like anything you gain in life: in order to gain something, you must do the work pertaining to it.
The 8 methods to receive blessings
In Matthew chapter 5, God taught through Jesus about 8 ways to gain blessings:
- Those who are poor in spirit will receive the blessing of going to Heaven.
Being poor in spirit means that you are spiritually poor, which in turn means that you realize your shortcomings and what is lacking in your faith, and you try to fill it. Jesus’ followers were always hungry for God, so they became poor in spirit and followed the Lord to learn from him.
- Those who mourn will receive the blessing of being comforted.
This means that people who don’t get discouraged when they encounter injustice or endure bitter experiences but who anxiously and desperately petition the Lord and tell him about it, will receive the blessing of God, the Holy Spirit, and the Lord comforting them physically and spiritually and resolving their problems.
- Those who are meek will receive the blessing to inherit the earth.
To be meek is to be humble, good-hearted, nice, gentle, and soft, while not being picky, evil, arrogant, strong, or unfriendly. It also means having a personality like a fertile field, silk clothing, and well-polished ornamental rocks. A person is born with their own personality and heart, but they also need to develop and polish themselves. The Israelites who came out of Egypt did not have meek hearts, so they received the wasteland—the Desert of Zin—and lived there. However, the second generation did have meek hearts, so they inherited the land flowing with milk and honey—the land of Canaan.
- Those who hunger and thirst for righteousness will receive the blessing of having their stomachs filled.
These are people who work hard to do righteous deeds. Jesus’ followers were hungry for righteousness, so they listened to and acted on the Word of righteousness and thus received the blessings of that time period.
- Those who are merciful will receive the blessing of being shown mercy.
These are people who have compassion and love for others. Those who help others and treat them with mercy will in turn also be treated with mercy. Those who are not merciful are people who speak and act harshly, so God, the Holy Spirit, and the Lord will not treat them with mercy. In every time period, those who fail to take action with the Lord’s heart will not be shown mercy before Heaven. This is the case both for slanderers and for people who mistreat their brothers and sisters without knowing their hearts and deeds.
- Those who are pure in heart will receive the blessing of seeing God.
In every time period, those whose hearts are pure because they live according to the Lord’s Word, and those who repent and make their hearts pure, live receiving the blessing of seeing God through the Lord.
- Peacemakers will be blessed to be called sons of God.
At the time of the New Testament, the Jews destroyed the peace because they could not accept Jesus. Consequently, they could not progress to God’s child-level history and failed to fulfill the dream they had waited for throughout the 4,000 years of the Old Testament. They came to a pitiful end. On the other hand, those who followed Jesus in peace were blessed to become God’s children, and they made history as such for 2,000 years. From sunrise to sunset, everyone should make decisions and resolve things peacefully. The head must be God, the Holy Spirit, and the Lord; only then can you receive the greatest blessings in Heaven and become true peacemakers.
- Those persecuted because of righteousness will be blessed to inherit Heaven.
Great is the prize and blessings that God, the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Son give to those who endure persecution and suffering on behalf of the Lord.
Improve yourself and live at peace with one another
Those who have received these eight kinds of blessings from God, the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Son should continue to improve themselves all the more, while those who have not received them should live receiving blessings by listening to God’s Word and taking action upon it.
Individuals, families, churches, and nations each have their positive and negative characteristics. Everyone must fix what they need to fix and live peacefully with one another.