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The Gospel - Poor in Spirit

Text: Matthew 5:3 & Luke 6:20


Jesus spoke to the crowd

Who were they?

Some were ordinary people of the day

Some were people that “did not matter”

Some were poor or unemployed

Some were outcasts of society

Some were merchants, laborers, craftsman,

business owners and spiritual leaders


Footnotes:

Most everyone deals with feelings of insecurity

at some time or another. We question our worth,

our significance. Especially as teens, we question

our value, and often feel like we don’t fit in.

Later in life we have scars from experiences and

hurts from poor choices, and the feelings of self-

doubt resurface. The older we get we may feel

like we have less value because we cannot do

the things we once did. Seniors may feel like

they are a burden to others, and that their life

has lost value.


What did Jesus say?

Matthew 5:3 Blessed are the poor in spirit,

for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Luke 6:20 Blessed are you who are poor,

for yours is the kingdom of God.


What did it mean to be poor, or poor in spirit?

The Greek word in Matthew and Luke

for poor is “ptochos.”

It means destitute, poverty stricken,

bankrupt, without possessing anything.


Footnotes:

Was Jesus teaching that there is some moral

superiority in poverty? Was Jesus teaching

that it is needful to acknowledge our spiritual

bankruptcy? I don’t think so. Let’s look at

other passages that speak of the “spirit”

within a person. Psalm 34:18 The Lord is

near to the brokenhearted and saves those

who are crushed in spirit. Proverbs 16:19

It is better to be humble in spirit with the

needy than to divide the spoils with the

proud. Proverbs 15:13 A joyful heart

makes a cheerful face, but when the heart

is sad, the spirit is broken. Proverbs 17:22

A broken spirit dries up the bones.

Proverbs 18:14 The spirit of a person can

endure his sickness, but as for a broken

spirit, who can endure it? Jesus was

looking at the spirit within the crowds.

He saw their hurt, their powerlessness

and hopelessness.


What was Jesus saying to them?

Jesus was speaking to broken and

hurting people.

People who were crushed in spirit,

without societal value or standing.

He was expressing acceptance of them

and assuring them of a heavenly

inheritance.


Footnotes:

This is good news! Regardless of how

others in this world value you, God says

“you are to die for.” While you draw

breath you are never beyond the reach

of God’s infinite grace.

What does this mean to us?

No matter if you may feel that you

are far from God…

No matter how much you have

screwed up in the past…

No matter how little value you place

on your own existence…

No matter how little the world may

value you…

These do not disqualify you from His

infinite grace!


God is not looking for you to perform

better! He calls you blessed!

God is letting you know that He loves

you and wants to give you His life.