Summary: Bible Study notes on the "Beatitudes
So far in our study through the “Beatitudes” we have noticed that every characteristic the Lord says should be evident in our lives as we faithfully follow Him is comparable to an emptying of ourselves.
· We are to have a poor spirit
· We are to have a sorrowful spirit
· We are to have a meek, submissive spirit
Today’s verse is still yet another very difficult idea, one that again is contrary to what the world teaches.
I read an interesting survey several years ago. A question was asked to those that said they faithfully attended church (I will not say which denomination); “How much time do you spend reading your Bible or in Bible study each week? Those that answered said on average 1-2 hours a week. But when asked how much time was spent watching television, these same people said over 5-7 hours on average each week.
Let’s look at verse 6
“Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.”
Again “Blessed” means “happy” or “blissful.”
I. A Godly Appetite (Hungering and Thirsting)
· When I was growing up and still to some extent my mom would always say to us when we did not want to eat “Is there something wrong?” or “Are you not feeling well?”
· It is a natural thing for us to be hungry and thirsty. And when there is no desire to eat or drink usually there is some thing wrong with our bodies.
· We live in a day and time when not many of us could say we have ever truly experienced what it means to be hungry. If I asked not many could say we have went to bed at the end of the day without eating.
· A couple of years ago Houston was voted or given the title as the least healthy city in America. I believe it was even said to be the fattest city in the U.S.
· Children obesity is a great problem in our country today.
The problem is just the opposite within our spiritual lives. I believe there is an appetite for spiritual things in our land. But just as it is unhealthy to fill ourselves on “junk food” it is even more so filling ourselves on “junk religion.”
· Jesus who said “I am the Living water” and “I am the Bread of life” desires for us to come to Him when those urges come.
· This hungering and thirsting that the Lord is speaking of goes to a deeper meaning.
· It describes an intense desire…
II. A Godly Attribute
· There is one further point in this beatitude, a point which only emerges in the Greek. It is a rule of Greek grammer that verbs of hungering and thirsting are followed by the genitive case. The genitive case is the case which, in English, is expresses by the word of. The genitive which follows verbs of hungering and thirsting in Greek is called the partive genitive, that is the genitive of the part. The idea is this. When a Greek said; “I hunger for of bread,” it was some of the bread that was desired, only a part of the bread. But in this beatitude, most unusually, righteousness, is in the direct accusative, and not in the normal genitive. When the verbs of hungering and thirsting in the Greek take the accusative instead of the genitive, the meaning is that the hunger and thirst are for the whole. To say I hunger and thirst for bread in the accusative means I want the whole loaf.
· Jesus tells us here in this verse we must have an intense longing after righteousness.
· What is righteousness?
· I always add this when I teach or preach on righteousness. Have you ever seen the movie Farris Beuler? Everyone loved him. The secretary said he was loved by the bangers, the heads, the preps, the jocks, the rockers. Do you remember when the principle, Ed Rooney, asked his secretary what is it about this kid that every body loves, she said “he is a righteous dude.”
· The actual word is best translated “rightwiseness”.
· Righteous means to be in right standing. In the spiritual sense it means to be in a right standing or relationship with God.
· This right standing with God can only be achieved through a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ; by faith in the finished work at Calvary; the atoning work of Jesus on our behalf.
· It is totally unmerited. It is an act of grace on God’s behalf toward an unrighteous person.
· This righteousness we receive is not accomplished because of anything we have done or can do. It is in Christ alone; but freely given and offered to us.