Sermon on the Mount | Mournfulness: Part 1

We are in culture shock.

As a congregation, we have entered into a series of messages through the book of Matthew in which Jesus is preaching and teaching (and soon will be demonstrating) the values or the culture of the kingdom of heaven. 

His opening salvo is found in Matthew 5:3 – Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs in the kingdom of heaven.

The word BLESSED in this passage (and in all mentions going forward) means to be wholly satisfied with being approved by God. To be BLESSED in the Kingdom of Heaven is to be wholly satisfied with being approved by God. To be blessed is to be content with being in the kingdom with the King’s approval.

The way of blessedness in the kingdom of heaven is the continual, conscious acknowledgement of our unworthiness before God, because then (and only then!) can we find our worth in His approval of us based on His grace.

We are human. We are American. We are southerners. We don’t like to see ourselves in need of anything. 

What we want Jesus to do is come down and say to us in our helplessness, “You can do it!”  But what he did was make helplessness the doorway to heaven. “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.” The thing we hate the most about ourselves is the very thing we must embrace about ourselves, because that puts us into a position to be filled with Christ.

If that domino falls … if we enter into a state of being poor in spirit so that we can have the kingdom of heaven … then inevitably another domino falls. There are certain inevitabilities associated with becoming poor in spirit, and the first one is found in v. 4.

Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. (Matthew 5:4)

How on earth could those who mourn be BLESSED? We’ll look at this more in our next posts. 


Rob Tims

Rob is Teaching Pastor at Blackman Baptist Church.