Winning Attitudes – Part 1

What is true happiness? How can we achieve that? Who is poor in spirit? What form of mourning turns to joy? When can meekness give strength? Achieving soul happiness is the key to living a truly blessed life now and forever.

Introduction

Also known as Beattitudes they are found in Matthew 5:1-5, Luke 6:20, 21b

Meaning of blessedness:

  • Spiritual well-being, deep joy of the soul.
  • Latin – Beatus (Blessed)
  • Greek – Makarios (Happiness)

Objectives

To understand:

  • The deeper concepts of “blessedness” given by Christ
  • The requirements for blessedness, specifically righteousness, mercy and purity.
  • The original meanings of associated terms and contexts and what Christ intended to convey.

Key Verses

Matt 5:3 “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.

Context

In the second year of Jesus’ teaching ministry (Luke 6:1) winning attitudes describe:

  • Qualities every Christian should manifest
  • Reward

Two beatitudes (Matthew 5:3,10) refer to the kingdom of God

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven

10 “Blessed are those who have been persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are the poor in spirit...

The meaning of poor – Ptōchos  in Greek: “the destitute”,  “like beggar”, “dependent on a provider”

Does not imply:

  • Material poverty
  • Poor-spirited

Implies realization of:

  • Spiritual destitution without God
  • Constant dependence on God

Blessed are the poor in spirit

  • ….This is the one I esteem :  he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at my word

    Isaiah 66:2b      

    The Lord is close to the broken hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit

    Psalms 34:18

…. For theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven

  • The Kingdom is already theirs (a present reality)
  • A reward as well as a consequence of being poor in spirit

Blessed are those who mourn...

The word for mourn is Pantheō – rarely used as it is the strongest Greek word meaning “to mourn”,  “to lament”

Does not imply:

  • Material loss
  • Rejection
  • Loss of a dear one

Implies:

Lament over one’s own sinfulness

Blessed are those who mourn...

Pure in heart. Greek Katharos –Clean, blameless, unstained from guilt.

We are declared pure because of:

  • work of JESUS to sanctify us through His blood.
  • by giving our hearts to Jesus

Psalm 119:9 How can a young person stay on the path of purity? By living according to your word.

Blessed are those who mourn...

Professor Scudder explains a life changing lesson when “locked in” with a fish by Professor Agassiz and told to “look at the fish”.. and “keep looking”. He discovers things he never saw before. So also when we examine ourselves.

Jeremiah 31:13b I will turn their mourning into joy, I will console and gladden them after their sorrows. 

2 Corinthians 7:10 For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation,…

 

Blessed are the meek…

We receive comfort and strength:

  • In sorrow and repentance
  • To resist sin
  • To stand against sin.

Blessed are the meek…

The words for meek are:

Praus: Greek for “mild”, “of  “gentle spirit”, “humble” 

Praeis: Greek for meekness, (most untranslatable word in NT – Barclay)

Does not imply:

  • Weakness
  • Compromise
  • Practiced self control

Implies:

Strength under control with higher objectives

Meekness exemplified

… Christ Jesus, who being in the very nature God did not consider equality with God something to be grasped (Phil.2:5,6)

  • Jesus (Mt. 11:29, 1 Pet.2:21-23)
  • Moses (Num.12 :1-10)
  • Apostles (1 Thess. 2:6)

Meekness explained

Jesus knew that the father had put all things under His power….and began to wash His disciples’ feet..

“I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you” (John 13)

Meekness established

When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no    threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him    who judges justly. (1 Pet. 2: 23)

Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.“… (Luke 23:34)

 

…for they will inherit the Earth

By being in Jesus, and Him in us, the meek:

  • Receive the allotted portion
  • Share in His inheritance becoming  co-heirs with Jesus

Psalm 37:11 “But the meek shall inherit the earth…”   

2 Tim.2:12 “If we endure, we will also reign with Him,  if we disown Him, He will also disown us”  

Discussion

1.What might be some connections or disconnects between spiritual poverty and physical poverty?

2.How does humility fit in a society that encourages an attitude of “you are number one,” prove you are better than everyone, work your way to the top, etc.?

3.How does meekness open a person to divine direction? How does meekness manifest itself in your life?

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