In listening to Yeshua [Jesus] , much of what He is saying goes against the grain of what I have thought brings happiness. It is the Jesus Manifesto.
Yeshua [Jesus] is radical and demands that we live in a radical way. Jesus wants us to change our minds and act differently (aka repent). Jesus will accept nothing less.
God has a goal for us. Yeshua [Jesus] takes care to summarize what some of God’s principles are.
In Matthew, we are used to the word “blessed”. The Greek word is μακάριος (makarios). That translation sounds religious.
What does it really mean. A better translation might be “happy”. Even better would be “more than happy”.
God has a plan for how we can be more than happy. Now that is some good news. The plan, however, doesn’t follow conventional wisdom. Nope, not at all.
Here are some of the things that don’t make sense in this world but lead to happiness in God’s Kingdom:
- With less of me there is more of God and his rule.
- I have to lose what is most dear to me.
- I must be content in who I am in His kingdom.
- I must be a glutton for Him spiritually. I must hunger for Him more than food.
- I must care for others, not myself.
- I must get my inside world, mind and heart, right first.
- I must show others how to cooperate not compete.
- I must be comfortable that my commitment to God will provoke persecution.
- I must please Him first.
So, there it is. It is not conventional wisdom at. It is God’s way.
When he saw the crowds, he went up on the mountain, and after he sat down, his disciples came to him. Then he began to teach them, saying:
“Happy are the poor in spirit, for the kingdom of heaven is theirs.
Happy are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
Happy are the humble, for they will inherit the earth.
Happy are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
Happy are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
Happy are the pure in heart, for they will see God.
Happy are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God.
Happy are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for the kingdom of heaven is theirs.
“You are Happy when they insult you and persecute you and falsely say every kind of evil against you because of me. Be glad and rejoice, because your reward is great in heaven. For that is how they persecuted the prophets who were before you. | Christian Standard Bible. (2020). (Matthew 5:1–13). Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers.