Monday, February 22, 2021

Today’s Reading - Matthew 5:1-26

Verse

3 “Blessed are the poor in spirit,

    for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

4 Blessed are those who mourn,

    for they will be comforted.

5 Blessed are the meek,

    for they will inherit the earth.

6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,

    for they will be filled.

7 Blessed are the merciful,

    for they will be shown mercy.

8 Blessed are the pure in heart,

    for they will see God.

9 Blessed are the peacemakers,

    for they will be called children of God.

10 Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness,

    for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

11 Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.”

Meditation

Jesus begins here. He’s been tempted, called the first disciples, and healed the sick. His first sermon. Maybe the most well known, well spoken, widely accepted sermon Jesus preached. He points out seven characteristics of living a Christ-filled life and states the result of living differently in two different ways. We can never read the first words of His first sermon too many times. You can look at them in various ways but they indeed sum up walking in step with Jesus. Verses ten and eleven clearly indicate our life will be in opposition to the ways of the world. Jesus uses the words persecuted and insult and the phrase related to falsehood to describe the reaction of the world. We should not feel like we have done something wrong when we experience the reaction. We should know we have lived correctly when others can see Jesus in us. People will react against Jesus in you so don’t take it personally. Take it as a kingdom reaction which ultimately leads to kingdom blessing. Read again what people will see. Poor in spirit. Mourning. Meek. Hunger and thirsting for righteousness. Merciful. Pure in heart. Peacemaker. A holy vessel.

Prayer

Heavenly Father, use us to live out what your Son first taught people. May these characteristics be evident in our life and may people see Jesus in us. Help us see people’s reaction against us as a reaction against the presence of Jesus. In His name we pray. Amen.