Our scripture this morning is Matthew 5:1-12 (NLT).
One day as he saw the crowds gathering, Jesus went up on the mountainside and sat down. His disciples gathered around him, and he began to teach them. “God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs. God blesses those who mourn, for they will be comforted. God blesses those who are humble, for they will inherit the whole earth. God blesses those who hunger and thirst for justice, for they will be satisfied. God blesses those who are merciful, for they will be shown mercy. God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God. God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God. God blesses those who are persecuted for doing right, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs. God blesses you when people mock you and persecute you and lie about you and say all sorts of evil things against you because you are my followers.Be happy about it! Be very glad! For a great reward awaits you in heaven. And remember, the ancient prophets were persecuted in the same way.”
“God blesses those who are persecuted for doing right, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.” Jesus said from the beginning that there would be resistance to God’s message, and that those who carry the Good News would encounter conflict. In John 15:18 He tells us “If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you”.
When we do what is right, it doesn’t matter what the world thinks. Jesus has given us the task of carrying on His ministry, sharing God’s love everywhere and making disciples of all nations. Helping others to know the Lord is more important than any earthly issue.
Have you felt pushback when trying to share the Gospel? Most of us don’t face the threat of physical violence due to our faith, but in many parts of the world it is still dangerous to be a Christian. No matter what the enemy throws at us we know that God is with us, giving us what is needed.
Heavenly Father, thank You for sending Your Son to save us and teach us the way to eternal life. Bless us to go in Your name that all the world may come to You. Amen.