Matthew 5:7 declares “Great blessings belong to those who show mercy to others. Mercy will be given to them” (ERV). God is pleased when we show mercy to others, consequently, He releases an awesome power in our lives that pulls down strongholds. We are not bound—shackled in chains of anger, resentment or the need to seek revenge. In our flesh, we may seek revenge for harm done to us; we may say that justice must be done. Yet, when we take this course of action, we can find no spiritual cleansing of our souls, and we won’t find favor with God through retaliation. Jesus said, we must forgive one another if we want our heavenly Father to forgive us.

I have read of quite profound incidents where individuals have shown mercy to others. Out of these acts of mercy came a sense of relief, of letting go of the poison in the heart, mind, and soul caused by a desire for revenge and retaliation. These people who showed mercy had their souls freed from much poison. Jesus said that those who show mercy will be blessed by having mercy bestowed on them in return. We are sinners and need to be shown mercy by our Maker. Jesus said that this mercy belongs to those who themselves are merciful. He has told us to do unto others as we would have them do unto us. We must love all people, even those who mistreat us.

Matthew 5:8 proclaims: “Great blessings belong to those whose thoughts are pure. They will be with God” (ERV). Some Bible versions say, “pure in heart.” This requires a heart which is in singleness toward God. No hidden motives or hypocrisy can exist. How can a heart like this exist unless the owner of that heart has totally turned himself over to Christ? We must totally submit to Christ if we ever hope to have pure hearts. The blessing bestowed on this kind of believer is so magnificent that he or she will be with God. Other versions of the Bible say that this believer will see God. “Seeing God” refers to a spiritual vision rather than a visualization with the human eye. Wow! What a blessing! Imagine, your soul seeing God!

As we delve further into chapter 5, verse 9 discloses: “Great blessings belong to those who work to bring peace. God will call them His sons and daughters” (ERV). Reading this beatitude makes me wonder how some people can say that they go to war in the name of God. How can they justify their destructive actions as being aligned with God’s will or plan? When Jesus used the word “peacemaker” in this verse, He was talking about the peace brought about as a result of a person being reconciled to God. How were we reconciled to God? Through the blood of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. In light of this, we can also help others to reconcile themselves to God by living exemplary lives for Christ and being witnesses for Him. I like to think of this as being a vessel for the Lord. We are the instruments He can use to draw others to Him. What an honor that can be for us as Christians to allow the Lord to use us in this manner. We must be obedient servants. The blessing that will be bestowed on us is that we will be called children of God. Wonderful! What an honor to be called a child of God.

Matthew 5:10 says “Great blessings belong to those who suffer persecution for doing what is right. God’s kingdom belongs to them” (ERV). As Christians, not only must we give up our lives to save them, but, we must also accept the reality of persecution. But, why not? Our Lord, our master was persecuted. Why should we expect to be treated differently? Remember, Jesus said that no servant is greater than his master. Facing persecution is not easy and certainly is not desirable, but Jesus faced persecution, and accepted it. Why? So that we as sinners could be saved and reconciled to our heavenly Father through Christ shedding His blood. Keep this in the forefront of your mind and heart if you face persecution. The believer who holds out to the end through persecution has a great blessing bestowed upon him or her. God’s kingdom belongs to them!

People will insult you and hurt you. They will lie and say all kinds of evil things about you because you follow me. But when they do that know that great blessings belong to you. Be happy about it. Be very glad because you have a great reward waiting for you in heaven. People did these same bad things to the prophets who lived before you” (Matthew 5:11, ERV). Jesus did not want us to be unaware of how we would be treated as His followers. As stated in the previous paragraph, we should not be surprised by this because a servant is no greater than his master. But we are to be glad because a great reward awaits the believer in heaven. Notice here that the reward is great, and it is in heaven!

We see a repetition of the words stated in Matthew 5:3 in Luke 6:20, this time with different wording. Matthew 5:6 is also repeated in Luke 6:21 with different wording. Likewise, the statement in Matthew 5:4 appears within Luke 6:21 and what is said in Matthew 5:10-11 is repeated with different wording in Luke 6:22-23.

Matthew 11:6 and Luke 7:23 tell us “Great blessings belong to those who don’t have a problem accepting me” (ERV). Those who do not stumble over believing, trusting, and obeying Jesus will have great blessings. Although the blessings are not specified here, notice—the word is plural. We must accept Christ as He is along with the doctrine He gives to us.

One last verse dealing with blessings, which I wish to share is contained in John 20:29: “Great blessings belong to people who believe without seeing me” (ERV). Here, Jesus refers to believers who came after the apostles and were taught by them; as well as those who have been taught by spiritual leaders through the ages. Think about it, having not been an eyewitness to the teachings and miracles of Jesus, yet, to believe, trust, and be obedient to Him through the teachings of spiritual leaders is an act of faith that brings with it blessings. In my opinion, it may have been easier to believe in Christ as an eye witness of His life and acts. However, the Pharisees and other religious leaders of Jesus’ time don’t support this statement.

In summary, the blessings mentioned above are promises from our Lord. I have specifically chosen the Easy to Read Version Bible for these verses because as you would notice, it uses the words “great blessings,” not just “blessings.” These are blessings that no one other than our Lord would be able to promise a believer. With these blessings promised to us, we should be happy, actually, we should be elated. We should be at peace. We must be eager to believe our Lord always, trust in Him, and follow His teachings through obedience.



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