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Summary: This is the first part of a message series dealing with the Sermon on the Mount. The teaching of Jesus in this sermon is practical for the life of a believer.

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A SERMON FOR OUR TIMES

A Series On The Sermon On The Mount

Section 1 “Be All That You Can Be With The Right Attitude”

Part 1

Matthew 5:3-12 "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 sons 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.

Matthew 5:3-4 (AMP)

3 Blessed (happy, to be envied, and spiritually prosperous—with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, regardless of their outward conditions) are the poor in spirit (the humble, who rate themselves insignificant), for theirs is the kingdom of heaven!

4 Blessed and enviably happy [with a happiness produced by the experience of God’s favor and especially conditioned by the revelation of His matchless grace] are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted!

INTRODUCTION: The Sermon on the Mount was an extended message of Jesus to His disciples. Not just the 12, but to all of his followers at the time. Several suggestions have been offered as to what this sermon actually is. Some believe that it is a code of conduct for believers, while others think Jesus is contrasting the values of the world with the values of the kingdom of heaven, a third group asserts that Jesus is contrasting the superficial faith of the Pharisees with genuine faith, and a final group thinks this is a message about the fulfillment of the Old Testament in the New Testament.

Greater scholars than I will ever be have debated this for years, so may I first suggest that what we have here is a forward look at kingdom living – the way we should be living now, and will live in the kingdom. Second, may I also suggest that the Pharisees provide an excellent example of how not to live as a believer.

Biblical living will always contradict secular living.

BIBLICAL LIVING

- GIVES

- TAKES

- HELPS

SECULAR LIVING

- ABUSES

- LOVES

- HATES

God’s kingdom now and when Christ returns is organized differently from the world.

Lets take a moment and go back to the reason for this sermon – to expose and enlighten disciples to kingdom living, using the Pharisees as an example, …

So, “Are you a Pharisee?” The Pharisees were great at taking positives and turning them into negatives.

PHARISEES

Positive Characteristics

1. Were committed to obeying all of God’s commands

2. Were admired by the common people for their apparent piety

3. Believed in a bodily resurrection and eternal life

4. Believed in angels and demons

Negative Characteristics

1. Behaved as though their own religious rules were just as important as God’s rules for living

2. Often forced others to try to live up to standards they themselves could not meet

3. Believed that salvation came from perfect obedience to the law and was not based on forgiveness of sins

4. Became so obsessed with obeying their legal interpretations in every detail that they completely ignored God’s message of mercy and grace

5. Were more concerned with appearing to be good than obeying God

The result was that the Pharisees believed they were RIGHTEOUS, so they had no HUNGER for it!

When we cease hungering for the attitude of the Beatitudes’ we lose the blessing of genuine faith (we become superficial believers)

I BLESSED ARE THE POOR IN SPIRIT, FOR THEIRS IS THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN

A What it means to be “blessed”

1 Originally this word meant “great outward prosperity

2 We would use it in a similar way today – we look at outward prosperity and say or think that that person is blessed

a OR lucky

b OR shrewd

3 Jesus changes the realm of meaning

a Takes it from the physical realm and moves it into the spiritual realm!

b For Jesus blessed mean the inevitable state of being in the kingdom

1 The result of salvation is blessed”ness”

2 "blessed" is the experience of hope and joy, independent of outward circumstances.

B The fact that Jesus associates Blessed”ness” with biblical living – ie: living as a believer tells us:

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