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Meaning of the Beatitudes

These beatitudes, taught by Jesus to the large crowds who followed him, are meant to answer the question, “if following the regulations of the law and the traditions of religious leaders doesn't make me righteous, then what does?” Jesus describes what a blessed life looks like.

Blessed

“Blessed” means speaking a good word, or in this context can mean happy or fortunate.

Poor in Spirit

Those who depend on the grace of God. Their own abilities are not sufficient to make them righteous (more...)

Those who mourn

Those who recognize their needs and present them to the one who can comfort or help them.

The Meek

Those who are gentle, humble, and unassuming of their position. They let God lead. “They will inherit the earth,” meaning they will serve God in his millennial kingdom on earth.

Those Who Hunger and Thirst after Righteousness.

Those who have a ravenous spiritual appetite to obey God's Word will be filled (see Psalm 119)

The Merciful

Those who extend mercy and grace to others who, like us, don't deserve it. God did this for us, so we his followers should do this for others.

The Pure in Heart

Those who are clean in their heart because of their salvation and daily cleansing of sin (more...). They will meet God personally.

The Peacemakers

Those who try to reconcile others to God. We show we are sons and daughters of our heavenly Father when we seek to reconcile others to Him (James 5:19-20)

Those Who are Persecuted for Righteousness

Those who endure insults, mockery, slander, beatings, and even death for Jesus' sake will receive great rewards in heaven.

Note: These beatitudes are in stark contrast to the pompous, harsh, and hypocritical ways of the religious leaders in Jesus' day.

Insights for this page are drawn in part from Vine's Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words, by W.E.Vine, M. A., Macdonald Publishing Co, ISBN 0-9170006-03-8, and by The Bible Knowledge Commentary of the N.T., edited by Walvoord and Zuck, ©1985, pp. 28-29)

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