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Summary: In the most famous sermon ever preached, Jesus sets forth eight statements that provide the best definition of a disciple ever delineated

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Developing a Disciple’s Attitude

In a classic comic, Calvin and Hobbes are talking about the New Year when Calvin says, “I’m getting disillusioned with these new years. They don’t seem very new at all. Each New Year is just like the old year. Here another year has gone by and everything’s still the same. There’s still pollution and war and stupidity and greed…I thought things were supposed to improve. I thought the future was supposed to be better.” After listening to this skeptical soliloquy, Hobbes replies, “The problem with the future is that it keeps turning into the present.”

Do you ever feel that way? While it’s difficult to put the past behind us, it’s even more challenging to be proactive in the present so that we’re transformed tomorrow. And some of us make resolutions in the New Year in the hopes that the future won’t turn into the present. I came across a website this week that listed the “Top Ten New Year’s Resolutions” (http://rats2u.com/christmas/newyear). Not surprisingly, the top four are health-related but two of the ten deal with the health of the soul:

Become a better person

Become more spiritual

We want things to be different in a new year but we quickly find out how elusive real change can be. We wish each other “Happy New Year” without really thinking through what that means. Is there a way to be happy, or is there more to life than the pursuit of happiness? How can we become better people? I’d like to suggest that we must develop a disciple’s attitude in order to have a happy New Year and to live a holy life.

In the most famous sermon ever preached, Jesus sets forth eight statements that provide the best definition of a disciple ever delineated. Please follow along as I read from Matthew 5:1-12. These opening words from the premier preacher of all time are known as “The Beatitudes” and we’ll be taking a look at each one in the next two months. As we go through these life-changing words, could I encourage you to memorize these verses? As we allow the Scripture to sink down into our souls, its power to transform us will be unleashed:

“Now when he saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, and he 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 will be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God. Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.’”


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