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Attitudes and actions that garner God’s blessings
What is this series about? An examination of 21 attitudes and behaviors identified in the New Testament as “blessed” A look at Christian conduct and characteristics that will enrich our lives with lasting joy A look at the condition of those who lack these qualities
Why study this? To understand God’s explanation of happiness and how we can reach it To understand how the world’s definition of happiness does not truly satisfy Solomon found futility in the accumulation of worldly wisdom and knowledge, in the pursuit of pleasure, the collection of wealth and possessions, in labor, in the oppression of enemies; concluded: fear God & obey Him
Outline Definitions of terms Today’s blessing is on the poor in spirit (Matthew 5:3) The blessing they receive The cursed life
Definition of terms Blessed (Greek: makarios) Webster: “of or enjoying happiness; bringing pleasure, contentment, or good fortune” Vine’s Expository Dictionary: happy, the state of happiness New Bible Dictionary: “used in Pagan Greek literature to describe the state of happiness and well-being such as the gods enjoy” Beatitude (Latin: beatitudo, from beatus) Webster: “a state of utmost bliss” The blessings of the beatitudes are moral joy and spiritual gain, not just material prosperity.
Blessed are the poor in spirit (Matt. 5:3) “poor in spirit” = humble in the heart, contrite Admits a dependency upon God, rather than arrogance in one’s own self-sufficiency Humble before God Isa. 57:15 – God prefers the company of such… Matt. 23:12 – God exalts such as these… Jms. 4:6 – God gives to grace to such as these… Humble before other people Rom. 12:16 – do not think yourself better than others Phil. 2:3 – regard others as greater than self 1 Pet. 5:5-6 – humility toward others and God
The blessing they receive (Matthew 5:3) “theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (the church) Who is greatest in the kingdom? (Matt. 18:1-4) Humble people put others first, and serve them. God rewards such behavior (Matt. 25:34-40) They enjoy the righteousness, peace, and joy of the kingdom (Rom. 14:17) “The reward of humility and the fear of the L ORD are riches, honor and life” (Prov. 22:4) Humble people are happy people, for they trust in God’s grace to bring them safely to heaven, rather than trusting in themselves or other created beings
The cursed life The opposite of poor in spirit: haughty, arrogant They seek to gain advantage for self (Jude 1:16) “boastful pride of life” (1 John 2:16) “take pride in appearance and not in heart” (2 Cor. 5:12) “jealousy and selfish ambition” (Jms. 3:14-16) Cursed: too proud to admit their need for God They cannot enter the kingdom of God (1 Cor. 6:9-10) They will never find true happiness, only a constant pursuit from one temporary, unfulfilling pleasure to the next temporary, unfulfilling pleasure Cursed are the haughty in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of hell (Ps. 101:5; Prov. 21:4)
Summary The one who is lowly in spirit finds happiness! The one who is lowly in spirit is heir to God’s kingdom The one who lacks humility finds no lasting joy and cannot enter the kingdom The blessed life begins with an humble attitude Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven!
Believe in Jesus Christ (John 14:1; Acts 16:30-34) That He died for your sins and was resurrected (1 Cor. 15:3-4) Repent of your past sins (Acts 17:30; 2 Peter 3:9) Commit yourself to holy conduct (Acts 26:30; Titus 2:11-12) Confess your faith (Matthew 10:32) Declare your belief that Jesus is God’s Son (Acts 8:37) Receive Baptism (Matthew 28:19; Acts 2:41; Acts 8:12) Baptism puts you into Christ (Romans 6:3-5; Galatians 3:27) Baptism is for the forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38; Acts 22:16) Baptism saves you (1 Peter 3:21) Be faithful until death (Revelation 2:10) Trust His grace and obey His commands (Hebrews 5:9) Or face the retribution due to those who do not obey 2 Thessalonians 1:8; Romans 2:8; John 3:36
Pray without ceasing…Practice what Jesus preached…Prepare for our next assembly
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