The beatitudes describe people who have saving faith and will inherit a place in the kingdom of God. Upon conversion, we don’t start perfectly, courageously and consistently displaying these qualities of poor in spirit, meek, mourning and so forth. Rather as we grow in faith, we grow in these qualities.
To be blessed is to be a person to whom good things are coming because I am in God’s favor and God is on my side. The one who is blessed is fortunate and in a highly desirable position, but is not necessarily happy.
The Beatitudes have 4 aspects:
- A beatitude states WHO is really fortunate and in a highly desirable situation.
- A beatitude gives a reason WHY such people are fortunate.
- A beatitude states that ONLY such people are fortunate.
- Each beatitude is surprising or ironic. At first glance the person described does not appear to be better off.
The Beatitudes follow this pattern: As strange as it may seem, those who are in the seemingly undesirable situation of being X now are actually in a highly desirable situation, because they alone have a glorious future from God.
The beatitudes suggest saving faith has 4 fundamental core convictions:
- a genuine desire for holiness in and of itself.
- a genuine understanding that left to myself I am not capable of obtaining holiness.
- a genuine understanding that God owes me nothing and I am unworthy of any gift from God.
- a firm trust that God — through the work of Jesus Christ — will make me holy and grant me an inheritance in the kingdom of God.
|Beatitude||Who is blessed||Why they are blessed||See also|
|Mat 5:3 – Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.||Those who are in the seemingly undesirable situation of knowing in their hearts that nothing in this world can give them what they truly need.|
|They alone will inherit a glorious future from God and will find true riches as citizens in the kingdom of God.|
|Lk 6:20; Lk 6:24; Lk 18:9-14;|
|Mat 5:4 – Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.||Those who have an appropriate sadness because they know that they are broken sinful rebellious people.|
|They alone will have their sorrow comforted by being made holy when the Messiah returns to establish life and righteousness in the world. (Conviction 4)||Lk 6:21; Lk 6:25; James 4:1-10;|
1Cor 5:1-2; Isa 12:1-6.
|Mat 5:5 – Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.||Those who humbly wait on God and do not presumptuously or disobediently grab for what they want or think they need (Conviction 3).||As Psalm 37 says they alone will inherit a place in God’s kingdom. This will happen on that day when the kingdom of God is established on earth.|
|Num 12:1-8; Exo 3:1-12; |
Exo 4:10-14; Psa 37:1-40.
|Mat 5:6 – Blessed are those who hunger for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.||Those who humbly wait on God to rescue them from their sinfulness and long for the day when God fulfills that promise.|
|Only they will be made holy in the kingdom of God.|
|Lk 6:21; Lk 6:25;|
|Mat 5:7 – Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.||Those who act kindly toward others who have wronged them in some way. |
|Only they will receive mercy from God when the kingdom comes. |
Mt 18:21-35; Eph 4:32; Col 3:12-13; James 2:13; Lev 19:18.
|Mat 5:8 – Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.||Those who’s hearts have been cleansed of rebellion and hostility so that they genuinely and sincerely seek God.|
|Only they will be able to stand before God and be accepted when the kingdom comes.|
Psa 73:1-28; Psa 24:1-10; James 4:4-10; Psa 17:15; Psa 11:7.
|Mat 5:9 – Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.||Those who do not return wrong for wrong but instead seek to be reconciled to those who wrong them. |
|They alone have proved themselves to be children of God and will inherit a place in their father’s kingdom.|
|Col 1:19-20; 1Pe 3:8-12; Rom 5:1-11.|
|Mat 5:10 – Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.||Those whose lives are marked by following Jesus such that others are hostile to them precisely because they follow Jesus.|
|They alone will inherit a glorious future from God as citizens in the kingdom of heaven.|
|Lk 6:22-23; Lk 6:26; Psa 37:1-40; Ps 69:1-36; 2Chr 24:17-21; John 16:2; Heb 11:36-40.|
Series: Gospel of Matthew: Behold, the King!
Resources: Matthew Resources
Photo by Guilherme Stecanella on Unsplash