Teaching: The Blessings of the Kingdom Matthew 5:1-12

Introduction

  • What is the Sermon on the Mount?
    • Starts Matthew 5:1-2
    • Ends Matthew 7:28-8:1
  • Why study the Sermon on the Mount?
    • Matthew 28:16-20
  • Christians are set apart by blessings.
  • Sandwich- Jesus came to heal us and to call us to godlyness
    • 4:23 Jesus was teaching and healing
      • Matthew 5:1-7:29 Jesus TEACHES
      • Matthew 8:1-9:34 Jesus HEALS
    • 9:35 Jesus was teaching and healing

Beatitudes

  1. Blessed Emptiness (v. 3-6)

    • 3- Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven
    • 4- Blessed are those who morn for they shall be comforted
    • 5- Blessed are the meek for they shall inherit the earth
    • 6- Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness for they shall be satisfied
  2. Overflowing Fullness (v. 7-12)

    • 7- Blessed are the merciful for they shall receive mercy
    • 8- Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God
    • 9- Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God
    • 10- Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven
    • 11- Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account.
    • 12- Rejoice and be glad for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

Find more sermons & teaching here.

Sermon: Suffering & Holiness in Light of Future Resurrection 1 Corinthians 15:30-34

If the Resurrection is not real: (v. 29-32)

  1. There is no gain in suffering for Jesus & Suffering is to be avoided at all costs.
  1. Sin is to be enjoyed.

BUT!!! Since The Resurrection is real (v. 33-34a)

  1. There is gain in suffering for Jesus & Suffering for Jesus is not to be avoided
  1. Sin must be eradicated in your life.

Why Does This Matter? – Some have no knowledge of God. (v. 34b)

  • Remember: Your labor is not in vain (v. 58)

Two Roads Leading to Hell

You may be reading this article because the title caught your eyes.  To Roads Leading to Hell… that seems a bit serious.  I want to reassure you; it is that serious. To begin, we see in the Bible that there are two options to chose from when it comes to Jesus Christ (Matthew 7:13).  Those who reject God in Christ are sentenced to eternal death for their sin, but those who repent of their sins and turn to Jesus in faith receive eternal life (Read John 12:44-50). I want to argue that in the Bible we look closely at this road to destruction and see that there are two ways we can reject God in Christ and therefore two “lanes” or “roads” leading to hell.

Road One: Irreligion/Paganism

This road is quite obvious and is what we generally think of when it comes to rejecting God.  What probably comes to most of our minds is God’s indictment on those who reject God in Romans 1.  This is the one who “exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images” (v. 23).  Those who “exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the creator” (v. 25).  On this road to hell are those who reject God by being “full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless” (v. 29-31).  For those who reject God and live in sin openly, it is obvious they are on a road to destruction.  It does not take much to see that they are full of sin and in need of a Savior.  This is not a good place to be, but in reality, it is not as terrifying as those who are taking the second road leading to hell.

Road Two: Religious Moralism/Works Righteousness

Here is the simple reason why road two, moralism, is even more dangerous than road one, paganism. The first road of paganism is marked by signs warning them they are heading for hell unless they turn to Jesus.  Not so with the religious moralist.  This person (maybe it’s you) is on a road with the wrong markings.  Though they are headed straight for eternal suffering, all signs say that they are heading for paradise.  People tell them “keep it up” and “I am so proud of you that you have turned your life around.”  Those on this road are present in churches, and placed next to true believers, they look exactly the same.

Have you ever entered a highway on the wrong ramp?  You intended to go east instead of west but you take the wrong entrance.  You get on the highway thinking you are going EAST but most likely, eventually, your eyes catch a sign that says WEST.  Then you know, “I am going the wrong way, I better turn around.”  Well, with the religious road of works righteousness, the signs have been changed.  The wicked enemy of God, Satan himself has switched the signs and instead of them saying “wrong way” or “road to destruction” they say “keep going, paradise 20 miles, no U-turns.”

This person is addressed in Romans 2.  In Romans 1 as we saw, Paul addressed the Pagan who is on the first road headed to hell.  In Romans 2, Paul begins addressing the “religious person” pointing out that they are on the same boat, or better yet, are on a similar road to destruction.  He points out that no matter how moral you try to be, you will always fall short.  You will be caught judging other people while you are practicing the same thing, just more discreetly (Romans 2:3-5).    Paul then concludes chapter 1 (the judgment of God on the Pagan) and chapter 2 (the judgment of God on the religious) in this way:

For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin. Romans 3:20 (ESV)

Both of these roads lead to hell.

Alternative: The Gospel of Grace

This has been a depressing blog post so far, and I pray you are now hungry for the Gospel of Grace- the only road to eternal life.  Paul has clearly established that we have no hope in ourselves.  If we give up on obeying God’s rules and run to paganism, we are headed for hell.  If on our own we seek to live a moral life, we are also headed for hell.  But Paul gives us a third option, a third road in Romans 3:21–27; the free gift of righteousness through faith.

21 But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it— 22 the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins. 26 It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

27 Then what becomes of our boasting? It is excluded. By what kind of law? By a law of works? No, but by the law of faith.

This is our only hope in life and in death, to cling to the cross of Christ, to run after our resurrected Savior Jesus Christ.  Our own righteousness is filthy before God, but the righteousness of Jesus is able to cleanse us, make us whole, and gives us new life, namely eternal life.  This eliminates boasting and all glory goes to God.

If you find yourself on the wrong road, headed the wrong way, listen to Peter: “Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out” -Acts 3:19

 

 

 

Singing Psalms and Hymns and Spiritual Songs

What do you think was the hymnal of the early church?  Clearly they did not have our “Baptist hymnals” and were clearly uninformed about any worship song that we sing today.  This does not mean we are in the dark though as to the worship of the early church. We have several texts that gives us a window into the worship of the first century apostolic christian church.

Ephesians 5:18-21 And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart, giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.

Colossians 3:14–17 And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

In both of these texts we see Paul is calling the church to sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs with joy and thankfulness to God.  There is some debate about exactly what we should consider “songs” and “spiritual songs” and what the difference would have been but there is little question as to what the psalms were; namely the book of Psalms in the OT.

So why does it matter?  Why am I writing about this?

  1. God calls us, and gives us the privilege to worship him.  No matter the form of music or where it comes from, God has made us to worship him- what an honor we have.
  2. Musical worship is not simplistic.  In other words, we must not say that God is only pleased with this specific type of song, only this rhythm, or only that instrument, or none at all.  He calls his church to sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs.  Not simply one and not the other.  All of them are pleasing to God
  3. The church would benefit from singing the Psalms.  This is easier said than done, especially since most Psalms are hard to sing and most churches have not even considered this.  This is something we should look into and consider if we want to take seriously God’s call in Ephesians 5:18-21 and Colossians 3:14-17.
  4. Worship is centered on the local church.  There is nothing necessarily wrong with worship bands and Christian artists.  Both have done great things for the Lord and His church.  I would also encourage private times of worship with yourself and even you family.  These are good things that we must do.  We must also see though that worship in the NT is undivided from a congregation.  We need to envision worship and the local church and inseparable.  Worship on earth is a community empowered work, much like it is in heaven.  Yes, worship on your own every day, but just as importantly, never neglect worship with your local church family.

This article is quite brief so many things were not addressed on this topic, but I hope this was helpful for you.  Below I have posted some recommended worship, including Psalms, Hymns, and worship songs.  Enjoy.

Psalms:

Psalm 62 

Psalm 42 

Psalm 104 

Psalm 119 

Psalm 113 

Psalm 43 

Hymns:

Spiritual Songs: