July 2007

July 22, 2007

INTRODUCTION – One of the things I love about the Holy Spirit is that He doesn’t just stop at convicting us of sin, and leaving us to grovel in our failure and misery. No, once He truly convicts and convinces us of our sin, He then cleanses us of that sin; and then conforms us to the image and likeness of Jesus Christ. Any true work of the Holy Spirit will always result in our becoming more like our Savior.

Two of the conforming works He is doing in these days are: 1. producing true happiness and joy in His people – the kind of joy that our Savior walked in and continues to walk in; and the kind of joy that gives us inner strength to endure hardship and suffering for His sake. 2. pouring out passion and zeal on His people that is ever increasing, and not just a result of a mountain top experience. The people of God were never meant to operate without those two things. Continue reading Hungering and Thirsting for Righteousness – Matt. 5:6

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July 1, 2007

INTRODUCTION – A few weeks ago – in our ongoing series through the gospel of Matthew – we started chapter 5, which opens with the Sermon on the Mount. We learned on that day that Jesus Christ at this point was beginning to pave the way for the culture of His kingdom to be established upon the earth through His disciples. And that that culture was to be founded on the very life and character of Christ. We learned that His will for His disciples is that we walk in a lifestyle of blessedness, or joy or happiness, though not as the world defines happiness. This blessedness is a state of mind and heart that is from the inside out, and cannot be altered or snuffed out by adverse circumstances. It comes as a result – not of any set of favorable circumstances; but rather because of Christ like character that we have allowed the Holy Spirit to form in us.

The first of those characteristics we looked at last time was that of being “poor in spirit”. This characteristic in fact is the one that opens the door to all the rest of them. To be poor in spirit we learned is to be in constant awareness of how spiritually needy we always are. It is similar to being humble or broken, and it is the opposite of pride or self reliance or self sufficiency.

Today as we prepare to come to the Lord’s table and partake of communion with Him, I want to quickly touch on the next one in line, which we find in vs. 4 of Matthew ch. 5. “Blessed, happy, joyful are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.” Happy are those who mourn??? You gotta be kidding! How can a person mourn and be happy or joyful at the same time? Continue reading The Blessedness of Mourning – Communion Meditation Matthew 5:4

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July 8, 2007

INTRODUCTION – Review of the Big Picture of the Sermon on the Mount; summary of first two beatitudes or kingdom characteristics.

I. Understanding the term “meek” or “gentle” – Matthew 5:5
A. Various Translations
K.J. = Meek
NKJ = meek
ESV = meek
NIV = meek
LB = meek and lowly
NASV= gentle
UNASV= gentle
So why did the NASV depart from all the others? Possibly because “meek” doesn’t communicate well in our society today, and gentle or humble does and is fairly synonymous. How often do you hear of someone spoken of as meek? Continue reading Only the Meek Inherit – Matthew 5:5

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