Summary: What do we mourn? Loss of loved ones, jobs, opportunities and the like. We are called to mourn our loss of our relationship with God.

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To Be Mourning.

Illust: I helped him cry.

Some commentators deny that this mourning is for sin (e.g., Bonnard). Others (e.g., Schweizer) understand it to be mourning for any kind of misery. The reality is subtler. The godly remnant of Jesus' day weeps because of the humiliation of Israel, but they understand that it comes from personal and corporate sins. The psalmist testified, "Streams of tears flow from my eyes, for your law is not obeyed" (Ps 119:136; cf. Ezek 9:4). When Jesus preached, "The kingdom of heaven is near," he, like John the Baptist before him, expected not jubilation but contrite tears. It is not enough to acknowledge personal spiritual bankruptcy (v. 3) with a cold heart. Weeping for sins can be deeply poignant (Ezra 10:6; Ps 51:4; Dan 9:19-20) and can cover a global as well as personal view of sin and our participation in it. Paul understands these matters well (cf. Rom 7:24; 1Cor 5:2; 2Cor 12:21; Philippians 3:18). The Messiah comes to bestow "the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair" (Isa 61:3). But these blessings, already realized partially but fully only at the consummation (Rev 7:17), depend on a Messiah who comes to save his people from their sins (1:21; cf. also 11:28-30). Those who claim to experience all its joys without tears mistake the nature of the kingdom. In Charles Wesley's words:

He speaks, and listening to his voice

New life the dead receive,

The mournful, broken hearts rejoice,

The humble poor believe.

1. What do we mourn?

a. Loss of loved ones

b. Loss of Pet

c. Loss of income

d. Loss of friend for reasons other than death

e. Our team lost

f. Loss of health

g. Loss of reputation

h. Loss of Prestige

These have earthly significance. The person you used to touch is no longer near. The place you used to go no longer exists. Many of us experienced this type of loss on September 11th. For those of us who have ever been to the World Trade Center, there is a sense of loss. The loss of possessions during a natural disaster would also fall into this category.

The second type of loss that we deal with is emotional loss. A loss of happiness, security, completeness and a sense of fulfillment. Physical loss and emotional loss often types walk hand in hand, because our emotional stability is intertwined with physical things.

These things sometimes can be replaced, we get over it, or we just move on. However the Lord says

"Comfort, comfort my people" (Isa 40:1) is God's response. These first two beatitudes deliberately allude to the messianic blessing of Isaiah 61:1-3

ISA 61:1 The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, 2 to proclaim the year of the LORD's favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, 3 and provide for those who grieve in Zion--to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of his splendor.

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