Time Alone With God daily devotional

Time Alone with God daily devotional

by Pastor Phil Stout – JAXNAZ church

Read: Matthew 5:1-3
New International Version (NIV)

Introduction to the Sermon on the Mount
5 Now when Jesus saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, 2 and he began to teach them.

The Beatitudes
He said:

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

Start

Consider: You may want to take another look at the passages we’ve read from the New Testament this week. You may want to scan the observations we’ve made, because they all point to one of Jesus’ central teachings…

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” (5:3)

The kingdom does not belong to…

The “ninety-nine” who won’t admit that they are lost (Luke 15:1-7).

The obedient son who feels morally superior to his promiscuous, but repentant, little brother (Luke 15:25-32).

Those who feel no need for a spiritual “doctor,” believing that they are already whole (Matthew 9:9-13).

The one who looks at the “other” with contempt (Luke 18:9-14).

No, not them. The kingdom of heaven belongs to “the poor in spirit.”

This is the starting point—the very first phrase—in Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount and it is the starting point for all of Jesus’ teaching. If we do not recognize our own spiritual poverty, if we will not humble ourselves, if we will not ask God to change us from what we are, the kingdom of heaven will be unintelligible to us.

As Jesus sat on the hillside and told the people what it would mean to follow him, his very first sentence explained the attitude we must bring. He spoke about the position we take in order to hear him and to follow him. He blessed us who go to him as “the poor in spirit.”

Pray: “Lord, your call to acknowledge my spiritual poverty is also a promise to me. Thank you for assuring me that I will be blessed by you.”

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