Blessed Are The Poor In Spirit
4th Sunday of Epiphany
Archbishop Loren Thomas Hines
February 2, 2020
Readings: Micah 6: 1 – 8
1 Corinthians 1: 26 – 31
Matthew 5: 1 – 12
From the beginning, Scriptures tell us we were created in the image and likeness of God. Unfortunately, many of us still do not see this imagery. We must renew our minds to grasp the truth. God treats us all the same. We are the ones who “classify” people and put them in boxes. Sad to say, even in church, we tend to follow more of the traditions rather than the Bible.
Isaiah 5: 2 He dug up and cleared it of stones and planted it with the choicest vines. He built a watchtower in it and cut out a winepress as well.
Isaiah 5: 4 What more could I have done for my vineyard that I have not already done?
This a clear picture of God sending His beloved Son to identify with us He has done everything for us. What more can he do that he has not already done for us?
Micah 6:3 “My people, what have I done to you? How have I burdened you? Answer me.”
God has provided everything that man needs. He provided us with trees for vegetation. Excess carbon dioxide is absorbed, while oxygen is released. Trees prevent soil erosion. But what has man done? Man has destroyed the environment by cutting down trees, and this is why we have floods and pollution. It is man’s own doing that we are in the condition that we are in. we should not blame God. God has given us holiness and righteousness.
Micah 6: 8 He has shown you, o mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.
We’ve been given so much and yet we are not using these gifts. We’re becoming slaves to the world system.
Isaiah 29: 14 Therefore once more I will astound these people with wonder upon wonder; the wisdom of the wise will perish, the intelligence of the intelligent will vanish.”
1 Corinthians 1: 27 but God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.
We are a blessed people. We have the joy of the Lord. “Blessed” in Greek is “macarios,” or joy. It is a kind of joy that is untouchable and self-controlled. It is not coming from the outside but something within us. Happiness, on the other hand, depends on something from the outside to motivate us. It does not last. Joy is not dependent on circumstances. It is based on what God has done for us through Christ Jesus.
Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
From the moment of conception, God has already ordained our lives. He has already prepared us. Being “poor” is one who has the ability of creating things with his hands, and making use of that which God has gifted him with to be able to provide the needs of his family. That man is blessed. He is “poor.”
Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
It is not the kind of mourning that is sadness, but a mourning and a seeking for the things of God we desire to happen but have not seen them manifested yet.
Blessed are the gentle, for they will inherit the land.
This means that we have everything under control. This is a man who is humble, does not run away from responsibility.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied.
We need to seek after the righteousness of God; to seek good, love kindness and walk humbly before the Lord, not in arrogance.
Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
If you want to receive mercy, be merciful to others. If you want kindness, be kind to others. You will sow what your reap.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.
Those who allow the things of God to rule in their lives.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
Because we are at peace and we have peace in our hearts, we can make peace with others. It’s our pride that is hindering us from making peace. We think we are bowing down to those who have wronged us, when in fact, we are the ones being exalted by God if we make peace with others.
Blessed are you when you are persecuted for righteousness’ sake.
People may mock and insult you, but when we stand in God’s principles we will be blessed.
The joy of the Lord is our strength and no one can take that away from us. God, in His sovereignty, may allow things that we deem as “not good’ or right happening in our lives, but He always turns them to good. He takes care of us daily and grants us His favor.