Poor in Spirit

As we continue the study of the Sermon on the Mount, remember ‘poor in spirit.’ When looking at his teaching, we will frequently despair, ‘I can’t do this.’  This is normal. This is our nature. This despoir is us trying to do this on our own. We must return to the first beatitude, ‘poor in spirit.’ We cannot become what …

Yes or No, Anything Beyond is Evil, Matthew 5:33-37

Yes or no is about me personally. My word is who I am, and Jesus wants me to focus on this. Yes, he is changing me, making me into the person he desires me to become as I say yes to him and no to that which moves me away from him. My yes or no is the center of …

Just Looking Good Isn’t Enough, Devotional Matthew 5:21-32

Just looking good isn’t enough for God. As long as my focus is on my goodness and my effort to be good—or even my effort to be good in front of others, this section makes no sense because Jesus is not talking about meeting minimum standards, looking good, or just getting by. He is talking about absolute moral perfection, absolute …

Sermon on the Mount, Further Thoughts

Although I have not written about the Sermon on the Mount for several days, the teachings of Jesus found there have often been in my daily meditations. I sat aside the blog while my daughters were away at camp and then I had a series of business trips. I also wrote a guest post for Jeremy Myers at www.tillhecomes.org entitled …

Salt and Righteousness, Devotional Matthew 5:13-20

Salt and righteousness, seek that which is real instead of the appearance of it. If something loses the essence of what it is and only the appearance remains, it is useless. In Jesus’ day, salt had many impurities, and when the salt washed away, the impurities remained. Then as now, many people like the Pharisees are concerned about the outward …