Monday, 19 August 2019
“And he opened up his mouth and taught them, saying: ‘Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs in the kingdom of heaven.’”
Pay attention to the life Jesus is calling you to!
This verse, at the beginning of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount is familiar to most Christians. But in the words of Oliver Wendell Holmes, “Most people are willing to take the Sermon on the Mount as a flag to sail under, but few will use it as a rudder by which to steer”. The Sermon on the Mount is Jesus’ manifesto, and as such it should be of utmost importance to us as Christians.
Look at verse 2: “And he opened up his mouth and taught them…” This is a time when Jesus sat down, his disciples came to him and Jesus said to them, “Ok let me tell you how I want you to live.”
The timing of this puts it right at the start of Jesus’ ministry of training of the twelve. It’s almost as if Jesus is saying “Before we start, this is the deal, if you are going to walk with me and learn from me, these are my expectations. This is the way I want you to live. This is the life that I will model for you.” That makes this section of the Bible very important to us. In fact, for a Christian, these chapters are some of the most important teachings in the Bible. Jesus is telling us how we should live. He’s giving us his manifesto.
Take a little bit of time now to read Matthew 5-7. It won’t take long. If you don’t have time now, set a reminder on your phone for when you know you will next have some time. Think about Jesus telling his disciples about how he wants them to live. Reflect on how your life would be different if you lived the way Jesus describes and ask God to help you in this. Pray that you would be steered by the rudder of Jesus’ teaching and not just appreciate the sound of it.