Summary: True happiness is found in living for God.
BLESSED TO BE DIFFERENT
C: Living for God
Th: Live the Difference
Pr: TRUE HAPPINESS IS FOUND IN LIVING FOR GOD.
?: How? How does this happen?
TS: We will find in our study of Matthew 5:7-12 that when we demonstrate four qualities, our lives will be blessed and full.
The _____ quality is…
I. MERCY (7)
II. PURITY (8)
III. PEACE (9)
IV. PERSECUTION (10-12)
PA: How is the change to be observed?
RMBC 21 November 04 AM
ILL Notebook: Joy (for free?)
An old rabbi is talking with one of his friends and says with a warm smile, "I gladdened seven hearts today."
"Seven hearts?" asks the friend. "How did you do that?"
The rabbi strokes his beard and replies, "I performed three marriages."
The friend looks at him quizzically. "Seven?" he asks. "I could understand six, but..."
"Well, what do you think," says the rabbi, "that I do this for free?"
What brings you happiness?
I ask that question because we have been studying the Beatitudes.
The beatitudes are a small group of sayings that belong to a larger section called the Sermon on the Mount.
There are eight beatitudes, each one beginning with the word “blessed.”
The basic meaning of this word translated “blessed” is happy.
So, what Jesus is doing during this small part of His message is explaining what it takes to be happy.
But as we have studied them in weeks past, they, perhaps have not been what you have expected…
We live in a culture that is consumed by finding happiness.
As we enter into the Christmas season, we continues its pursuit by becoming more and more materialistic.
And, it is exhausting.
But Jesus does tell us how to find it.
1. To find happiness, we must be empty before God (3-5).
Back on October 24, we studied the first three beatitudes…
"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 meek, for they shall inherit the earth.”
If we are going to be happy, we have to know the poverty of soul that understands that we have nothing of worth to bring before God except ourselves alone.
If we are truly going to be happy, we have to be broken and grief-stricken before God, fully understanding how our sin has offended Him.
If we are going to know the truest happiness, we are going to have to submit our will and strength under the Lordship of Jesus.
So, you see…
2. To find happiness, we must desire God above everything else (6).
On October 31, we studied the fourth beatitude…
"Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.”
We have to get our priorities right.
If we are not seeking for righteousness, we are going to miss what God has for us.
Not only that, we are not going to be satisfied.
If we trade in God’s priorities for our own, we are the big losers.
You see, as believers…
3. Our lives are meant to be fulfilling and joyful.
But you know, as you read those first four beatitudes, they seem rather paradoxical.
They seem to be just the opposite of what we initially expected.
But Jesus does say each one on purpose.
And as we now study the next four beatitudes, we see they have a direct relationship with the first four.
Those that recognize their spiritual poverty recognize their need of mercy.
Those who mourn over their sin recognize their need of purity.
Those who are submitting to the Lordship of Jesus will seek peace.
And those who truly hunger for righteousness will be willing to pay the price to obtain it, even if it is costly.
Yes, these next four beatitudes tell us that…
4. TRUE HAPPINESS IS FOUND IN LIVING FOR GOD.
But how is this going to happen?
5. We will find in our study of Matthew 5:7-12 that when we demonstrate four qualities, our lives will be blessed and full.
Now we are able to demonstrate these qualities, not because we can do so in our own strength, but because we are submitted to the Lordship of Jesus and the power of the Holy Spirit.
I. The first quality is MERCY (7).
"Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.”
ILL Compassion (swing)
A man is in bed with his wife when there is knocking on the door. He rolls over and looks at his clock. It’s half past three in the morning.
"I’m not getting out of bed at this time," he thinks, and rolls over.
Then, a louder knock follows.