Who are the Blessed? I’ve been digging in during my studying time to really learn who Jesus was. It’s been such an amazing journey so far, to rediscover who he is. Today I was in Matthew 5. He had me camped out here for a bit digging in. You may know them as the Beattitudes. They can also be found in Luke 6 with Woes added in. Looking into these today I began to rejoice as I saw a new meaning behind them. Instead of looking at them as a list of things I must do, that they are a part of who I am because of Jesus.
Blessed, the greek work Makarios (3107) meaning happy, blessed, to be envied,
Matt 5:3 “Blessed are the poor (humble, deeply destitute, completely lacking
resources) in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
When we realize it’s all about Him and not about us, we realize we are completely lacking all resources, there is nothing we can do to save ourselves. Thus, the Kingdom of Heaven is ours because we realize how poor in Spirit we are and how in need of His grace.
v4: Blessed are those who mourn (grieve over a death, grieve over a personal hope that dies), for they will be comforted.
When we realize how much we need him, we grieve over the death we had been living in and he comforts us. Comfort is defined as-coming close up and personal, offers up the evidence of who we truly are (exhorts the truth of us.)
v5: Blessed are the gentle (mild, meek:great power under control) for they will inherit the earth.
Jesus was our example of meekness. Weakness doesn’t mean doormat, it means knowing your power and keeping it under your control.
Matt 11:29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart; and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
**(Interesting note on Gentle: It traces back to latin word gentlis, meaning “of the same clan,” used to describe people belonging to distinguished families who were courteous and noble.
v6: Blessed are those who hunger (desire deeply) and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
We can see in Romans 3:22 The righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe.
Romans 1:16-17 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written. The gospel (good news) is the revelation of God’s righteousness that is ours through Faith in Jesus.
Romans 3:2 Jesus was the demonstration of God’s righteousness to us.
Romans 4:5 But to the one who does not work, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited as righteousness,
Abraham was counted as righteous because he believed, not because of anything he did. Romans 4:13 We need to realize that we don’t need to do anything but believe in Jesus.
Romans 5:17-18 For if by the transgression of the one, death reigned through the one, much more those who receive the abundance of Grace and the gift of righteousness will reign in life (zoe God Life) through the One, Jesus Christ. So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men, even so through on act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to all (every) men. We are called to reign in life right now, praises to Jesus for that. Through his obedience we are made righteous. (Romans 5:19)
Romans 6:18 Having been freed from sin, you became slaves (bondservant=choosing to serve) of righteousness. We have chosen when we believe in the Gospel (good news) to be a bondservant to Christ. To believe what HE says about who we are. We naturally hunger for the righteousness of God which we receive only through Jesus, when we believed we received it.
v7: Blessed are the merciful (full of pity, compassionate) from 1656 (eleeo), for they will be shown mercy (pity on, mercy on).
Matt 9:13 “…I desire compassion (mercy, pity, compassion) and not sacrifice (offering, spiritual sacrifice), for I did not come to the righteous, but sinners.
Pity: sympathetic or kindly sorrow evoked by the suffering, distress, or misfortune of another, often leading one to give relief or aid or to show mercy
C ompassion: a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune,accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.
Compassion is the outward manifestation of pity; it assumes need on the part of him who receives it, and resources adequate to meet the need on the part of him who shows it. It is used of God who is rich in mercy, Eph 2:4, and who has provided salvation for all men, Titus 3:5. God’s tender sense of our misery displays itself in His efforts to lessen and entirely remove it-efforts that are hindered and defeated only by man’s continued perverseness (willfully determined to go counter to what is desired, unbelief). Grace removes guilt and mercy removes misery.
v8: Blessed are the pure (clean, unstained, without admixture, purified by God) in heart, for they will see (see with the mind, spiritually see, perceive, discern, experience) God.
9: Blessed are the peacemakers (bravely declares God’s terms which makes someone whole), for they will be called children of God.
Peacemaker: From eirene (1515) wholeness, God’s gift of wholeness, rest, prosperity, and poieo (4160) I do, make, bring forth, used of bringing forth fruit.
Peacemakers are those who speak life and truth and rest and wholeness into others.
v10: Blessed are those who are persecuted (aggressively chase, like a hunter pursuing a catch, because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Now lets look at Luke, who also wrote about this, but he included the woes and not just the blessings.
Luke 6:20 Looking at his disciples, he said:
“Blessed are you who are poor (same word as seen in Matt),
for yours is the kingdom of God.
21 Blessed are you who hunger (same as above) now,
for you will be satisfied.
Blessed are you who weep (weep aloud, expressing uncontainable grief) now,
for you will laugh.
22 Blessed are you when people hate (detest, esteem less) you,
when they exclude (drive or cast out) you and insult (like showing one’s teeth, cast blame) you and reject your name(authority, reputation, character) as evil (toilsome, bad), because of the Son of Man.
23 “Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven. For that is how their ancestors treated the prophets.
24 “But woe to you who are rich,
for you have already received your comfort.
This refers to men of good social position and of wealth. Jews, more than likely pharisees who opposed Jesus, he was speaking to this class as a whole who opposed him with such bitter opposition.
25 Woe to you who are well fed now,
for you will go hungry. Woe to you who laugh now,
for you will mourn and weep.
This refers to those that are not hungry for the truth, they are satisfied where they are.
26 Woe to you when everyone speaks well of you,
for that is how their ancestors treated the false prophets.
Many early Christians were poor. Their commitment to Jesus led to their being persecuted like the prophets of the old. In Jewish circles the choice to follow Jesus would have ostracized you. Social isolation would thus bring economic consequences in that day. The woes also reflect prophetic tradition and how prophets of old were treated. One of the dangers of wealth is that it can lead one to believe a life of independence is possible which is incorrect. God’s blessings rest on those who rest in him.
Can you see that this is you. When your eyes were open to truth and you Believed in the gospel you mourned you hungered, you realized your poorness in spirit. Blessed are You! Amen!