Tuesday, 7 June 2022
Matthew 5:4 Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Again, I want to emphasize that all of the beatitudes are intended to produce change from within a person. Too many of us are being affected by the world around us. We should be changing from within to affect the outside world. This requires the power of God. Romans 8:37 But in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.
A word comes to my mind, "loathsome." What does it mean? According to the Oxford online dictionary, it means "causing hatred or disgust." Our sin must become loathsome to us. When we mourn our sin in such a way that it becomes loathsome to us, God promises comfort.
The Greek word for comfort is Parakaleo, which has a connotation of "encouragement." The Hebrew word is Y'nuchamu which reminds me of Isaiah 40:1-2a "Comfort, comfort My people," says your God. "Speak kindly to the heart of Jerusalem and proclaim to her that her warfare has ended, that her iniquity has been removed."
This is part and parcel of the Gospel message. Is Yeshua preaching the gospel in the sermon on the mount? I expect that's exactly what He is doing.
Steve McConnell wrote a song that ties the Shabbat celebration to the Beatitudes. Here is the link: youtube.com/watch?v=uphFhOEHf5Y. I find this remarkable. When we incorporate these 7 attitudes into our lives as believers, and are walking in their fullness, we will have the "Shalom" reality that is Shabbat. God gave us the weekly Shabbat so that we would have an appetizer of the true Shalom He wants to plant in our hearts.
That true Shalom is the visible result of a life given over to God's kingdom principles. As the song says, "This day all our striving is done. This day shall be joy for everyone." The "day" of which Steve McConnell is singing is more than the weekly Shabbat, it is the day of the Lord spoken about in Joel 2:1 Blow the shofar in Zion! Sound an alarm on My holy mountain! Let all living in the land tremble - for the day of Adonai is coming - surely it is near!
Many scriptures speak of this day in gravely serious terms. Joel 2:11b For great is the day of Adonai - very terrifying! Who can endure it? I'll tell you, no one will endure it without the power and presence of God. We must be trained up (discipled) to respond to every situation with these attitudes. Attitude is 90% of any assignment. Skill or talent will get you a 10% result. The other 90% is having your heart right (it's a heart thang). Skill can be taught. Attitude must be caught.
Philippians 2:5-7a Have this attitude in yourselves, which also was in Messiah Yeshua, Who, though existing in the form of God, did not consider being equal to God a thing to be grasped. But He emptied Himself.
I could quote more Scripture here, but we have to stop someplace, or just reprint the whole Bible. The assignment is to become more like our Savior. Let's stop and repeat the first 2 of the 7 beatitudes ... be spiritually empty (void of self), mourn (grieve over sin). Sounds like a good start, right?
Rabbi Michael Weiner,