20 And he lifted up his eyes on his disciples, and said:
“Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God.
21 “Blessed are you who are hungry now, for you shall be satisfied.
“Blessed are you who weep now, for you shall laugh.
22 “Blessed are you when people hate you and when they exclude you and revile you and spurn your name as evil, on account of the Son of Man! 23 Rejoice in that day, and leap for joy, for behold, your reward is great in heaven; for so their fathers did to the prophets.
Jesus Pronounces Woes
24 “But woe to you who are rich, for you have received your consolation.
25 “Woe to you who are full now, for you shall be hungry.
“Woe to you who laugh now, for you shall mourn and weep.
26 “Woe to you, when all people speak well of you, for so their fathers did to the false prophets.
So look at the Blessings in verses 20-22 and then the woes in 23-24.
Check out the last woe. Meditate on it. Chew it over.
Interesting and outside of the box right? Truths…
- Someone will eventually turn on you because even though they speak well of you to your face behind your back they really dislike you or what you think and so they naturally oppose you. There are passive-aggressive people all around you. It’s only a matter of time when it comes out that you didn’t have the 100% approval rating you thought you had.
Avoid believing you have 100% approval at all costs.
Avoid defining your life in terms of people approval.
- In this world there is no 100% approval rating of any person or any idea or any action. Be skeptical if all you get is agreement. If you get unanimity, just wait until you see the cracks of disagreement and opposition.
- Realize that our identity as Christ following men is not built on people’s approval of us, but of God’s approval of us in Christ.
- Learn to relate to your enemies (opposers) with God’s love, wanting their good and wishing for their good. This is self-surrender of your good for sure, but it is God’s way and the best way not to become bitter about those who take the other side. That’s what this next section is all about:
Love Your Enemies
27 “But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you.29 To one who strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also, and from one who takes away your cloak do not withhold your tunic[a] either.30 Give to everyone who begs from you, and from one who takes away your goods do not demand them back. 31 And as you wish that others would do to you, do so to them.
32 “If you love those who love you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. 33 And if you do good to those who do good to you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners do the same.34 And if you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, to get back the same amount. 35 But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil. 36 Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful.
Jesus is always outside of the human way of thinking. Always.
This isn’t easy to live. It is the way life works best in God’s way of thinking.
And quite frankly, His way of thinking is all that matters!
Here’s to Jesus’ way of thinking!
Strength and Courage,