#254 – PUT ON THIS BLESSING EVERY DAY (10/12/20)
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:12
In a world, and too often a church, that glamorises charisma, strength of personality, self-confidence and presentation, we can all move from poverty of spirit into pride and vanity. Let’s keep putting on dependence to God -poverty of spirit - each day.
Readings and reflections
1. God blesses those with a humble attitude.
‘For this is what the high and exalted One says— he who lives forever, whose name is holy: “I live in a high and holy place, but also with the one who is contrite and lowly in spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly and to revive the heart of the contrite.’ (Isaiah 57:15)
How is God described?
‘Holy’ means to be separated from all that is evil and separated for all that is good. Who does God ‘whose name is holy’ also dwell with?
What will be the results of God’s presence with us?
2. Put on the blessing through worship.
‘Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfil his promises to her!” And Mary said: “My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour, for he has been mindful of the humble state of his servant. From now on all generations will call me blessed, for the Mighty One has done great things for me— holy is his name.”’ (Luke 1:45-49)
Mary is blessed because she has believed the promise of God for her. Likewise, God has promised us profound things in Christ; are you and I overflowing with joy at the blessings of God?
Spend a moment meditating on Mary’s attitude and response to God’s blessing. How does this compare with our response and attitude?
Have I got a correct awe of God’s holiness to the point where I wonder how on earth can I be accepted by Him? Am I overflowing with joy at the blessing of the gospel?
To memorise this week
This week, why not begin memorising The Beatitudes?!
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:12)
COMMUNITY GROUP STUDY - BLESSED ARE THE POOR IN SPIRIT
It might be good to begin with notices. Please share from this week’s Church News.
Have you ever been jealous of someone? Why was this?
Introduction - please share in your group
To be a disciple means that we learn from, in order to obey, Jesus. On Sunday, we began to look at the Beatitudes, which is an important section of Jesus' teaching.
Let's read the whole section together,
'Now when Jesus saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, He said: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you."' (Matthew 5:1-12)
To be blessed means to be truly happy, and truly rich.
Billy Graham called the Beatitudes the beautiful attitudes. These are attributes that every Christian is to exhibit. As we do so, we will become a city set on a hill for the glory of God.
Blessed are the poor in spirit
This week we will focus on the first Beatitude which reads,
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." (Matthew 5:3)
To be poor in Spirit is to realise that we are spiritually bankrupt. We realise that we need saving. It's to come to trust in Jesus completely for salvation and transformation. To such belongs 'The Kingdom of heaven' - they become citizens of God's Kingdom and have the certain hope of eternal life.
1. Would you like to share anything that struck you or something that God spoke to you about from Sunday's message or the devotionals this week?
2. What might characterise someone who is 'poor in spirit'?
3. To be blessed is to be truly rich; in what ways have Christians been enriched?
4. To be poor in spirit is to rely on Jesus completely for salvation; what texts of scripture would you use to reinforce this idea?
5. To be poor in spirit to to rely on God for transformation (sanctification); what texts of scripture might you use to reinforce this?
Investing and inviting
i) Who has God put into your life that we could pray for together?
ii) How are you planning to 'invest and invite'?
iii) Finally, Who are you planning to invite to our carol service on the 20th?