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January 30, 2012

We currently find ourselves in the midst of a wonderful sermon series at church which is focused on “The Sermon on the Mount”.  This is highly regarded as the greatest sermon that Jesus ever preached.

I could probably blog for hours – sharing the edifying moments that have taken place so far during this sermon series.  But, since I can’t do that, I wanted to just post an eye-opening, “amplified” version of the Beatitudes that was read a few weeks ago during the message.

The world’s definition of a “blessed” person is so different from Christ’s definition.  How often I am guilty of confusing the two.

The world’s definition?  I suppose it would read something like this.  Blessed are the rich, the confident, the powerful, the popular, the smart, the healthy, the successful, and the beautiful.

Christ’s definition?  Much, much different……..

-“Blessed are the poor in spirit”  (blessed are those who recognize their utter need for God – for theirs is the kingdom of heaven).

-“Blessed are those who mourn” (blessed are those who have experienced great loss, spiritually and tangibly through sin, through death, through terrible choices and they know it and cry out from it – for they shall be comforted. Their loss will turn for gain).

-“Blessed are the meek” (blessed are those who are unassuming, non-aggressive, perpetually disinterested in upward mobility – for they shall inherit the earth).

-“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness” (blessed are those who seek their world, and the world, put right – who seek the fulfillment of a good, divine will, and not their own – for they shall be satisfied. They will feast on the spoils of God’s will revealed and implemented).

-“Blessed are the merciful” (blessed are those who selflessly consider the deep needs of others and meet those needs as costly as it might be – ranging from forgiveness to acts of compassion and sacrifice – for they shall receive mercy. They will receive mercy and compassion from God in turn).

-“Blessed are the pure in heart” (blessed are those who simply throw up their hands in the midst of the ritualistic games played in a religion and simply seek to honor God by embracing the transformative work only he can do in the human heart, making it right and pure by his grace and mercy – for they shall see God).

-“Blessed are the peacemakers” (blessed are those who take notice of division and fragmentation in the world between brothers and sisters and seek to do the hard work of bringing about reconciliation – for they shall be called sons of God).

-“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake” (blessed are those who are forced into difficult, impoverished lives because of following hard and fast after me in my ways, my manner of life – for theirs is the kingdom of heaven).

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