Applying the Beatitudes

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We often view the beatitudes as setting forth an idyllic spirituality suited for another world—or at least a monastery. Short of that, we envision a beleaguered spirituality which regards suffering and dreariness as perpetual measures of holiness and spiritual authenticity. The beatitudes are neither. They are far more practical. We live in a world in which things are badly wrong and out of place, and we desperately need for God to set things right. That need is the itch the kingdom of God was intended to scratch by ushering in a new way life which sees God’s will being done here on earth as it is in heaven—which is what life was meant to be to start with. The process of that world transformation is what the beatitudes are all about. They are about what it means and what it takes for a bunch of saved sinners to become a city on a hill and the light of the world. The beatitudes are about overcoming—overcoming evil with good and transforming the world into the realm of the blessed. After all, Jesus did promise that the meek will “inherit the earth.” I hope you enjoy the sermon. Thanks for listening. —Alan Burrow

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