Jesus Christ is the Master of instruction to live a positive life. His Sermon on the Mount, found in Matthew, chapters 5 ,6, and 7, eloquently reveals what is important in life, and how we can grow in the kingdom of heaven.
Two thousand years ago, enormous crowds gathered together on a hillside near Capernaum, as Jesus preached for several days what has become one of His most famous messages.
Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount is widely accepted through all denominations as one of the most quoted sections of the Bible. It reveals to us encouraging instruction on how to love and live with one another.
Known as the Beatitudes (meaning supreme blessedness), Matthew 5:3-12 delivers hope to all choosing not to live by world standards.
- “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
- Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
- Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.
- Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
- Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
- Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.
- Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
- Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
- “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
The Beatitudes can be understood in four different contexts:
- They contrast kingdom values with worldly values.
- They are a standard of conduct for all believers.
- They contrast superficial faith with true faith, which Christ wants in His believers.
- They describe Old Testament expectations will be fulfilled in Christ’s new kingdom.
Key lessons for life are located in these spectacular sermons, as Jesus taught on the mountainside for almost a week. The Beatitudes in chapter five are not the completion of the Sermon on the Mount.
The book of Matthew shares many details of other topics Jesus spoke on during that blessed time frame. Jesus taught that just like salt brings out flavor, Christians are to bring out the best in others. Also, just like light shines, we as Christians are to shine lovingly on others. Read about this in Matthew 5:13-16
Jesus stressed to the Israelites He did not come to abolish the Law of the Prophets, but to fulfill it. The Old Testament contains three categories of law which Jesus referred to:
- Ceremonial Law, relating specifically to worship. It is these laws the Pharisees mostly complained about Jesus breaking.
- Civil Law, which related to daily living. In His time, Jesus lived these laws, but in today’s modern times, many of these laws could never be followed.
- Moral Law, which are direct commands from God, such as the Ten Commandments. Jesus followed these laws completely, and we are instructed to do the same and follow Jesus’ example.
Jesus also spoke about anger – that we should settle matters quickly. And lust, which Jesus said is the same as adultery. Jesus said that marriage is to be a lifetime commitment, oaths should not be broken, and to give more than what is expected of us at all times. All found in Matthew 5:21-42
And it is Jesus, the very definition of love who gave of Himself on the cross for us, who tells us to love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us. Found in Matthew 5:34-48.
If you have not read Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, I encourage you to take some time from your busy schedule… relax… and read words that Jesus Himself spoke, on how he desires us to live a loving, productive, stress free Christian life.