The Sermon On The Mount is considered to be the masterpiece of all of the sermons that Jesus preached. It was presented by Jesus to his disciples. It was not given nor intended for the multitudes. For this reason Jesus separated himself from the multitudes and went up into a mountain, and when his disciples came unto him, he taught them. The Sermon On The Mount comprises Matthew chapters 5, 6, and 7. This sermon is a picture of a perfect new born child of God. To have any possibility of living out this sermon, you must first be born again. Second, you must be a disciple of Jesus Christ. A disciple of Jesus is the one who obeys completely the conditions of discipleship that Jesus taught.
Many people say they want to be like Jesus. Do they really? Jesus gave up EVERYTHING to leave his home in heaven and to come to earth. He again gave up EVERYTHING to begin his ministry and to travel throughout Israel as an itinerant teacher and preacher. Jesus owned nothing but the clothes that he wore and a staff. He was homeless, had no job, no income, and lived by prayer and faith alone. He was rejected, ridiculed, and scorned by his own nation. His own family doubted him and thought that he had lost his mind. The people of his hometown of Nazareth tried to murder him by throwing him off a cliff. He suffered persecution everywhere that he went. He was continually attacked and tempted by satan himself. He also commanded his disciples to live the same way as he did. So don’t say that you want to be like Jesus unless you really mean it, and are ready to back it up with action.
The Sermon On The Mount contains the laws that govern the Kingdom of God, also known as the Kingdom of Heaven. The Kingdom of God is found on earth and the Kingdom of Heaven is found in heaven. It is one and the same kingdom with two locations. Although the Sermon On The Mount contains the laws that govern God’s Kingdom, for a complete knowledge of these laws it is necessary to study every single word that Jesus spoke. That would be every word that he spoke in Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, and the Book of Revelation.
Modern Bible teachers and theologians would tell us that it is not necessary to obey the Sermon On The Mount today. It is the spirit of Anti-Christ that says that. Jesus and his doctrine are one and the same. You cannot have one without the other. So anyone who denies the doctrine of Jesus also denies Jesus himself. That is the spirit of Anti-Christ. You cannot have Jesus as your Savior unless he is first your Lord. The offices that Jesus occupies cannot be split up. He doesn’t occupy the office of Savior apart from the office of Lord. He occupies the single office of Lord and Savior. Either Jesus is your God and King, and you obey him fully; or he is nothing at all to you.
Matthew 5:3 “Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
What is meant by “Poor in spirit”? It is the opposite of “Rich in spirit.” The rich in spirit are proud and arrogant. They think that they know everything and that no one can teach them anything. They think that they do not need any help from anyone, or for that matter anything at all. The rich in spirit are self-sufficient.
The poor in spirit have emptied themselves of self and of sin. They are not self-sufficient unto themselves, they but lean upon God for everything that they need through prayer. They know better than anyone else that they are nothing, that they know nothing, and that they can do nothing by themselves. They are teachable and they are submitted to the authority of the Twelve Apostles. (These are the original Eleven Apostles, plus Matthias, who was the replacement for Judas Iscariot, who was also the traitor.) These are the poor in spirit to whom the kingdom of heaven belongs.
Matthew 5:4 “Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.”
Why do people mourn? For the death of a loved one. For some calamity that has befallen them or loved ones. It is always for something negative and catastrophic. Happy, fun loving, laughing people do not mourn. You cannot mourn and be happy at the same time.
So why does Jesus say that those who mourn are blessed? There is a mourning over our own sins that is especially good for us. Unless we mourn over our sins we will never stop sinning.
James 4:6-10 “But he gives more grace. Wherefore he says, God resists the proud, but gives grace unto the humble. Submit yourselves therefore unto God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double minded. Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.”
Mourning is part of the process of becoming humble. God gives grace to the humble, but not to the proud. Drawing near to God, cleansing your hands, purifying your heart, becoming single minded, being afflicted, mourning, and weeping all go together. All are necessary for true repentance of sin. Repentance isn’t just feeling sorry for your sins as modern preachers would have you to believe. It is the process of becoming free of your sins. A repented person no longer sins as he once did. Laughter is to be turned into mourning and joy turned into heaviness.
We are to mourn also for the lost people who are going to hell. Jesus did this publicly on one occasion.
Matthew 23:37 “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you that kill the prophets, and stone them which are sent unto you, how often would I have gathered your children together, even as a hen gathers her chickens under her wings, and you would not !”
Jesus was a man of sorrows and acquainted with griefs. Jesus is today portrayed as always being happy, joyful, and laughing. That portrayal is not the Jesus of the Bible. Jesus knew from childhood the suffering and the death that awaited him at 33 years of age. He carried that burden constantly. He knew that he would bear the sins of the entire human race. He was called a bastard all of his life. As far as other people were concerned he was born out of wedlock, which was a grave sin in the Jewish culture.
Jesus has called his disciples to carry a cross. As soon as you shoulder that cross, the life that you once knew is over and done with. You are dead to this world and the life you now live is one of suffering, deprivation, and pain. A true disciple of Jesus Christ is in a state of mourning nearly all of the time. Jesus also spoke of fullness of joy when our prayers are answered. Being a disciple is a very curious mixture of mourning and joy. You have to experience being a true disciple of Jesus Christ in order to understand what I’m talking about.
Matthew 5:5 “Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.”
A mouse is meek. Jesus called himself meek and lowly of heart. A meek person is teachable and receptive to rebuke and correction. A meek person receives commands from Jesus and obeys them. Pride, self-will, and stubbornness are nowhere to be found in a meek person. A meek person is submitted to Jesus as his disciple and does his will.