5:1 And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him:
2 And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying,
3 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
4 Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.
5 Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
6 Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
7 Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
8 Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
9 Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
You can find blessings in strange places.
Jesus proved that truth, in the spiritual realm, when he preached what we call The Sermon on the Mount. This sermon begins with that familiar word “blessed.” Modem translators have often used the words “happy” or “fortunate” instead.
- Jesus says that happiness can be found where there is poverty. The word translated “poor” is the word which denotes absolute poverty. It describes not the condition of having a little but of having nothing. It is not financial poverty that Jesus has in mind but spiritual poverty. We must learn to admit our need and to recognize the only One who can fill it.
- Jesus says that happiness can be found where there is weeping. There is a hidden blessing in mourning. If our heart can be broken, then we can experience Jesus’ comforting touch. Those who cannot mourn cannot love either. It is better to have a broken heart than no heart at all.
- Jesus says happiness can be found where there is submission. To the modern mind, meekness is a quality to avoid. Meekness is not for the faint-hearted or timid.
- Jesus says happiness can be found where there is hunger. The hunger referred to here is not the rumble of a missed meal, but the gnawing hunger that results from deprivation. It is not literal hunger, of course, but a hunger and thirst for righteousness.
- Jesus says happiness can be found where there is forgiveness. Most will agree that mercy is a blessing when you receive it. Jesus says, “Blessed are the merciful.”
- Jesus says happiness can be found where there is sincerity. The non-Christian does not believe that the pure of heart are blessed. The Christian knows a wonderful secret. Purity carries its own reward. It is a lifestyle that brings health and contentment.
- Happiness can be found where there is conflict. Jesus says, “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called the children of God.” You should notice that it does not say, “Blessed are the peace-lovers.” If we dare to make peace, then we will be given the greatest compliment a person may know on earth. We will be called “sons of God.”
- Jesus says happiness can be found where there is mistreatment. Everyone wants to be liked; it is our nature. It is not possible to please everyone especially if you are a Christian. A person who lives a genuine Christian life can be a real nuisance. Persecution can be a character builder. Persecution can make us a more effective witness.
- To receive the blessing of God we must accept a different set of priorities and look in different places than the world would look. You know why? Of course, you do. It should be obvious by now. Happiness is found in strange places.