We're wrapping up the beatitudes today and talking about...WAR! What's it gonna take for us to hold the line? Let's talk about it...
Hello, everybody. Welcome to the Dona Watson Show. I'm your host, Dona Watson. I'm just an average American Patriot who loves God, her family, her country. I try really hard to listen to God's voice. Sometimes I write stuff. Come with me, together let's explore this crazy experience we call life. Welcome to the show. Hello everybody. Welcome to podcast 13: "Hold the Line!" Yesterday we started looking at the beatitudes in Matthew 5. And today I'd like to wrap those up. We'll start with Matthew 5:6, "Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled." Have you ever been really hungry for something particular to eat? Every now and then I get a craving for something, maybe a pizza or , um, some ice cream or a particular restaurant. And that thought will niggle away in the back of my mind until I satisfy that craving. Well, that's the same idea that we have here. Jesus is encouraging his followers to be so hungry for God that it becomes a fervent desire to be filled with God's presence. In addition, the words "they will be filled" are a passive voice verb, which points to the fact that this righteousness isn't something the disciples could achieve through their own efforts. The verb here is a "divine passive," and that describes an act of God. Only God can impart to us the righteousness that we hunger for. It's a divine gift. How cool is that? Matthew 5:7, the next beatitude is: "Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy." This one is pretty straight forward. Who are the merciful? Those who relate to others with a forgiving and compassionate spirit. God will respond to these people in like manner, extending to them, forgiveness and compassion. Let's go to Matthew 5:8, "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God." I really like this one. Who is pure in heart? I think it's someone who's authentically righteous inside. Righteousness be faked, as it was with the Pharisees that were alive during Jesus' time. Jesus said in Matthew 23, that inside the scribes and Pharisees were full of greed and self-indulgence, even though they looked holy on the outside. But what Jesus is saying here in this beatitude is that true purity can be had when God grants it to the person who hungers and thirsts for it. And here's the really cool part. In this promise, Jesus is letting everyone know that as the new Moses, he's promising his followers, a certain level of access to God that not even the ancient Moses was allowed to experience. Those who are pure in heart will literally behold God in all of his glory. That's what it says. "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God." The next beatitude, Matthew 5:9, "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God." Peacemakers. Boy, do we need lots of those in our world today. Instead of finding fault with each other and bending to the standard of what today's press is calling the "cancel culture," Christ is advocating here a concept of resolving conflict by making prompt apologies and acts of restitution, by refusing to seek revenge, and humbly serving and loving one's enemies. When we operate with these principles in mind, we emulate the heart of God and in so doing, he will accept us as his sons and daughters at the final judgment. We've made it to the last beatitude in Matthew 5:10, "Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for the kingdom of heaven is theirs." My study Bible notes that the purest form of righteousness is pursued by those who know that their good deeds will demand great sacrifice. They continue to seek after God and his righteousness, knowing the end result could very well be pain rather than worldly reward. This is the epitome of kingdom righteousness that is preached by Christ in the Sermon on the Mount. And here Jesus is saying that the kingdom of heaven belongs to those who suffer for righteousness. Those who try to evade persecution are not true disciples, and they won't have a share in the kingdom because true followers of Jesus will do so, even if it costs them their lives. This is really truly a hard saying.:
But you know, every kingdom maintains its strength through the power of its foot soldiers and Jesus was calling his followers and he still calls us today to be a new kind of foot soldier--one who throws his or her entire heart and soul into seeking after God and living by these principles of righteousness. Even if it costs us, everything.Speaker 1:
When a person serves in the U.S. Military, they have to swear an oath to support and defend the constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic, and to obey the orders of the President of the United States and the officers who are appointed over them. Likewise, when we serve in God's army, we are called to similarly put our all into serving the King and living according to the code of righteousness that his son Jesus laid out for us. This is how we "hold the line" against the powers of darkness. This is how we defeat the enemy who seeks to encroach on our communities and impose an unholy standard that does not honor God. So today I encourage all of my fellow soldiers: Hold the line! Seek after God's heart, allow others to see you live out God's principles of purity, holiness, and compassion and forgiveness. Don't bend in the face of evil and don't let anyone tell you otherwise. Don't compromise. We can do this. Let's hold the line. That's all I've got for today. Those are the beatitudes. Words to live by. I love you guys. Until next time, let's do battle! Bye.