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5:1-12 The Beatitudes - Study Notes

The Beatitudes 


Matthew 5:1-12


Verses are in light green.

Questions are in yellow.  

Answers are in red.

A good title for this sermon (Matthew 5:1 - 7:27) is "How to Live a Life Blessed by God"


5:1-2  "One day as he saw the crowds gathering, Jesus went up on the mountainside and sat down. His disciples gathered around him, 2 and he began to teach them."


His disciples gathered around him

  1. Jesus is teaching his disciples and the crowd are listening in.  The disciples are ones who did what in the previous chapter?  4:17  "From then on Jesus began to preach, Repent of your sins and turn to God, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near"  They had repented of their sins and turned to God.  
  2. 4:17 is the same message that John the Baptist preached in 3:2 "Repent of your sins and turn to God, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near."  Luke is a parallel passage to Matthew 3 and gives more detail.  
  3. Why were they baptized?  Luke 3:3  "preaching that people should be baptized to show that they had repented of their sins and turned to God to be forgiven."  To show that they had repented of their sins and turned to God to be forgiven.  
    1. What does it mean to repent?  To turn away from one's sins (acknowledge they are wrong) and turn to following God (make him the master of my life instead of myself).
    2. What happens when one repents?  My sins are forgiven! (Luke 3:3) and 1:21 "And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins."  I'm saved from my sins!
  4. What was the warning given to them?  Luke 3:8,9 (same as 3:8,10) "Prove by the way you live that you have repented of your sins and turned to God. ... every tree that does not produce good fruit will be chopped down and thrown into the fire."  
  5. For more on what it means to repent and turn to God and also what God does when we do that go to Jesus' Main Message.

 and he began to teach them 

  1. Why did Jesus teach this sermon?  (Notice how he ends his sermon with the reasons why)7:13-14  “You can enter God’s Kingdom only through the narrow gate. The highway to hell is broad, and its gate is wide for the many who choose that way. 14 But the gateway to life is very narrow and the road is difficult, and only a few ever find it."  Most people are going to hell even though they think they are going to heaven.  The sign (that Satan put) over the wide gate says 'heaven'.  v22-23 in the next passage illustrates this.
  2. 7:21-27  "Not everyone who calls out to me, ‘Lord! Lord!’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Only those who actually do the will of my Father in heaven will enter. 22 On judgment day many will say to me, ‘Lord! Lord! We prophesied in your name and cast out demons in your name and performed many miracles in your name.’ 23 But I will reply, ‘I never knew you. Get away from me, you who break God’s laws. 24 Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. 25 Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock. 26 But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand. 27 When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash."  Even people who call Jesus their Lord can end up in hell if they don't actually do God's will.  So Jesus teaches them what God's will is in order to save then both from hell and from having their lives wreck in this life (v24-27).
  3. In 7:24-27 above, what causes the house to be built on solid rock?  Following/obeying Jesus' teaching.  
  4. What two things determine our position in heaven?  5:19 " So if you ignore the least commandment and teach others to do the same, you will be called the least in the Kingdom of Heaven. But anyone who obeys God’s laws and teaches them will be called great in the Kingdom of Heaven."  How well we obey and teach Jesus' teachings
  5. What will we experience if we obey/follow his teachings?  See the first 3 words in each verse from 5:3 to 5:10 "God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs."  God's blessings.
  6. Additional Verses  John 8:31-36 If we hold to Jesus' teachings we will be set free from the power of sin.  

Jesus thought this sermon was important enough to teach.  Should we teach it also?  Yes!  Everything depends on how well we learn, obey, and teach it.

  1. How are we commanded to make disciples?  "Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. 20 Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you."  Jesus commands us to: (1) Get them to make a public commitment to repent and to follow Jesus (baptism) and teach them not just Jesus' commands but also to OBEY.  And teach them not just to obey some, but to obey ALL of Jesus' commands.
  2. What are we to do?   "You have heard me teach things that have been confirmed by many reliable witnesses. Now teach these truths to other trustworthy people who will be able to pass them on to others."  Teach others in such a way they learn and obey it AND also teach it to others.
  3. What determines our 'status' in heaven?  "So if you ignore the least commandment and teach others to do the same, you will be called the least in the Kingdom of Heaven. But anyone who obeys God’s laws and teaches them will be called great in the Kingdom of Heaven."  The degree to which we both obey and teach Jesus' commandments. 
  4. Therefore take very good notes.  
  5. Go to www.smgroups.com.

Application: Jesus thought it was crucial to teach the Sermon on the Mount.  So should I.  Who can I teach this to?  Ask at end of every study.



5:3  "God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs."


God blesses those  


who are poor and realize their need for him 

  1. "This is the "good news of the kingdom" (4:23) announced in 4:17, and poverty of spirit is the product of the repentance which was there declared to be the appropriate response to the coming of God's reign" NICNT
  2. For more on repentance go to www.jesusmainmessage.org 
  3. It's the opposite of self-sufficiency.  
  4. "Only those who humbly depend on God are admitted into the Kingdom of Heaven"  LANTC
  5. It's asking God for what?  Luke 18:13-14  "But the tax collector stood at a distance and dared not even lift his eyes to heaven as he prayed. Instead, he beat his chest in sorrow, saying, ‘O God, be merciful to me, for I am a sinner.’ 14 I tell you, this sinner, not the Pharisee, returned home justified before God. For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted."  Asking God to be merciful (realizing we're spiritually bankrupt).
  6. Who does God bless?  Isaiah 66:2  "I will bless those who have humble and contrite hearts, who tremble at my word."  Those who are humble, contrite, and tremble at the Bible.  Google defines contrite as "feeling or expressing remorse or penitence; affected by guilt.
  7. So what is "realize their need for him"?  It is realizing our desperate need for God for both salvation (Eph 2.8-9  Luke 24:47 "There is forgiveness of sins for all who repent.") and God's help to live today (6:11-13 "Give us today the food we need, 12 and forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us.  13 And don't let us yield to temptation but rescue us from the evil one").
  8. How can we test ourselves to see if we are doing this?: (1) How much are you asking God to help you?  (2) Who are you relying on?  2 Cor 1.9,10,12
  9. For further study  John 15:5
  10. [APP]  Each day let's "realize our need for him" by keep asking for his help and relying on his help and not our abilities (Matt 6:11-13, 1 Cor 1:9-12).


for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs  "To enter the kingdom of heaven ... means ... to come under God's rule, to become one of those who recognize his kingship and live by its standards, to be God's true people"  NICNT  pg 190


Application: Daily acknowledge my desperate need for God.  Throughout the day keep asking for his help and guidance and keep depending on his help and not my abilities.


5:4 "God blesses those who mourn, for they will be comforted."



Not just mourn but turn by repenting 4:17, 2 Cor 7:10. Commit to obey 28:20,  Submit to God and weep Ja 4:7-10

"the grief of those suffering the consequences of sin.  Theirs is an attitude of repentance"  CSBSB

Go over middle part of note in Blue NT


2 Cor 7.10 includes Matt 4.17.

Mourning comes from 5.10, 11-12,

But God will 2 Cor 1.3, 



Go over last part of note in Blue NT

those who don't throw their weight around

INSTEAD of expecting others to serve you we should serve others

Those who wait for the Lord


Phil 2:3-8  Jesus did v7 gave up privileges, v7 took humble position of a slave, v8 humbled himself in obedience to God, 


From Kevin Brown sermon notes "What is Humility? Humility is having or showing a sense of lowliness or inferiority. A common Greek phrase is “to make low!” Means to be in a “low estate”. It is to see others higher than yourself. The Greek word literally means to “level a mountain or hill”. Humble people are those who have no hills sticking up!” True humility is NOT thinking less of yourself; it is thinking of yourself LESS” It is having a proper attitude toward self that results in proper actions toward others! Hard to just say...BE HUMBLE! Can fake it on the outside but the change must be inside! If you are experiencing FRICTION in your relationships, whether in your marriage, family, friendships, workplaces, school, CHANCES ARE you need to GROW in HUMILITY. When we are TRULY HUMBLE, we can diffuse arguments, handle unfair treatment peacefully, don’t have to put on a false front, can eat “humble pie” without being crushed, we can ask for forgiveness, and even talk with the right attitude when we are humble!"



Notice, motive is not important. OK to first do it out of fear (law of gravity - what will happen to me) but it'll grow to (wanting to please God).  

God will help you be victorious.  -- Promise of 1 Cor 10:13

Will be filled: As we obey more the peace/satisfaction is incredible.

v6 is to do what is right, v8 is to have God #1





What is humility?  "True humility means to deny oneself, to accept a position of servanthood, and to completely follow the Master"  Note on Matthew 18:2-4 in LANTC


LANTC  Life Application New Testament Commentary

NICNT  The Gospel of Matthew in the New International Commentary on the New Testament commentary series






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