Series: Other Speakers
Sun am 4 September 2011 – Sam Festus
Matt. 5:1-10, 13-16
God really wants us to inherit the earth. In the Beatitudes, Jesus is laying the foundations of the Kingdom and how you and I are going to operate in the Kingdom. The Sermon on the Mount was one of the first lessons the disciples received. Jesus spoke Aramaic; He said to them, Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. When you talk about being ‘poor in spirit,’ you are talking about humility. In Aramaic the word ‘poor’ is to devotedly hold onto something of great value, in the sense that one would be poorer for the lack of it. You are poorer for not having it.
Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth. If we talk about ‘meek,’ we again mean ‘gentle,’ but in the Aramaic it means somebody who is completely surrendered. That is the place where God wants His people to be – a place of total surrender. They shall inherit the earth, which in the Aramaic means, ‘God is my source.’ In other words, it is not just about inheriting the earth, but about Who owns the earth. Jesus is saying to them, “You will find something of value and not give it up.” The ones who are completely surrendered to Him, the meek, will draw from Him for He will be their source. This is how you will operate in the Kingdom.
If you are poor in spirit, you will inherit the Kingdom. If you are meek, you will inherit the earth; in other words, “I will provide for you.” When you inherit the earth, you don’t just inherit the land but you are inheriting the God of the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied. This is talking about a hunger and thirst for the knowledge of God, not just a hunger and thirst that can be satisfied by anything. He says, “Hunger after righteousness.” There are two levels of righteousness. We live righteous lives, we live by the fruit of the Spirit; we live by God’s principles. The other level of righteousness is to ensure that righteousness happens in the world around us; to ensure things are done correctly. We do not live with blinkers on; when things need to be addressed, we address it.
Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy. You can put the merciful and the poor in spirit together. It is important that mercy is part of how we operate. We live in a society where very little grace and mercy is shown. You have to sow mercy in order to reap mercy. You don’t just show mercy when you are out ministering; you show mercy all the time. It is how you operate and people will be drawn to you because of the mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. Your heart is the core of your being. This is a critical component of our operating system. We have to operate from a position of purity. Unless you have a pure heart, you will not see God. All we need to do is receive purity; God has dealt with that by the finished works. In our daily walk, if you operate in a dishonest way and you are deceitful in the things you do, and are misleading people, you are not operating from a place of purity. If we talk about purity, it is complete purity, not just sometimes. The things of God, and if we are surrendered to God, no longer operate in an optional system. If we want to see God, it means absolute purity, not part time purity.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God – The makers and maintainers of peace, for they shall be called the sons of God. It is easy to make peace; but to keep peace is a different story. Jesus was laying particular emphasis on this. It’s somebody who brings unity, who brings harmony; somebody who brings peace into a situation, he’s a son. A son is a carrier of peace, a maker of peace, and a maintainer of peace.
Blessed are those who have been persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. You get persecuted for various reasons, but this persecution is for righteousness sake. When you are doing the right thing, when you are walking in the things of God and you are persecuted for that, then you are in a position to inherit the Kingdom of Heaven.
You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste (its strength, its quality), how can its saltiness be restored? It is not good for anything any longer but to be thrown out and trodden underfoot by men. Let your light so shine before men that they may see your moral excellence and your praiseworthy, noble, and good deeds and recognize and honor and praise and glorify your Father Who is in heaven (Amplified). The way the world is going to glorify and honour the Father in heaven, is by looking at us and our deeds, and seeing what we do. If we operate from a pure heart, if we operate with mercy; if we live according to these principles and foundations of the Kingdom, we will definitely show the world a different way of operating. The world out there must see a different system, and they cannot see God except through us. We are the image and the representation of God. In the Lord’s prayer where it says, “As it is in heaven, let it be on earth,” Jesus was basically telling them, “as it is in heaven, so I want you to operate on earth.” He is setting the standard on how you and I must operate on a daily basis, so that our light may shine before men.
God has called us to represent Him, and we must represent Him on His terms.