Blessed are the Poor in Spirit.
01/10/2021

Blessed are the Poor in Spirit.

Speaker:
Series:
Passage: Matthew 5:3
Service Type:

Count Your Blessings

Thanksgiving is a time to count your blessings… 

One by one… 

As each relative goes home.

What does it mean to be blessed?

The Beatitudes are…

1) the defining marks of a Christian.

2) a progression.

3) keys to unlocking the blessing of God.

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” 

Matthew 5:3

Poor – of a low or inferior standard or quality (pertaining to spirit)

1) To be poor in spirit is to admit defeat. 

…before God

Jesus is not speaking about the relationship between people, but between people and God.

Jesus told a parable to those who looked down on others about 2 men came up to the temple to pray…

“…He would not even look up to heaven, 

but beat his breast and said, ‘God, 

have mercy on me, a sinner.’ 

“I tell you that this man, 

rather than the other, 

went home justified before God.” 

Luke 18:13-14a

This man was justified and moved on to the next ring.

2) To be poor in spirit is to begin. 

Rings

God is for all people. True or False?

“God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.”

James 4:6b

You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked.

Revelation 3:17 

no humility, poverty of spirit, no beginning.

Most people encounter Jesus at a low point.

3) Adversity reveals poverty of spirit. 

Actually, everyone is poor in spirit. 

It’s the admission of powerlessness that’s needed to begin with God.

The disciples hadn’t caught anything all night. 

Adversity is the great catalyst to change.

“Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.”

Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. 

But because you say so, I will let down the nets.”

When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink.

When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus’ knees and said, 

“Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!” For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken, and so were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, Simon’s partners.

Then Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid; from now on you will fish for people.” So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.” 

Luke 5:4-11

4) The power of Jesus brings poverty of spirit. 

The closer we get to Jesus, the more personal sin is revealed.

“When a man is getting better he understands more and more clearly the evil that is still left in him. When a man is getting worse he understands his own badness less and less. A moderately bad man knows he is not very good: a thoroughly bad man thinks he is all right. This is common sense, really. You understand sleep when you are awake, not while you are sleeping… Good people know about both good and evil: bad people do not know about either.”

– C.S. Lewis (Mere Christianity)

Have we come to this place? 

Knowing that before God, we have nothing to offer.

It’s not over until it’s over.

5) Being poor in spirit is a continuing process. 

rings remember the progression.

if you loose momentum, you walk back to the beginning and start again.

There is always the tendency toward pride

Pride cannot exist in the presence of God.

Listen to the contrast in these statements. (trust man vs. God)

“Trust thyself: every heart vibrates to that iron string.”

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

“I’d rather die my way than live yours.”

Lauren Oliver

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding..” 

Proverbs 3:5

Present tense. 

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 5:3

“Heaven comes to the humble before the humble come to heaven.” 

~ Colin Smith

7) Poverty of spirit is voluntary 

Everyone is poor in spirit, but only those who know and admit it enter.

“Two things are needed. Do what God says is your work: humble yourself. Trust him to do what he says is his work: he will exalt you.”

~ Andrew Murray

“He can refuse to take his cross, or he can stoop and take it up and start for the dark hill. The difference between sainthood and spiritual mediocrity depends upon which choice he makes.”

~ A.W.Tozer

Application: People who are POOR IN SPIRIT let go of the idea that God owes them something. (Entitlement mentality)

This leads to bitterness, anger and disappointment… 

not the kingdom of heaven.

Summary Slide 

1) To be poor in spirit is to be humble. 

2) To be poor in spirit is to begin. 

3) Adversity reveals poverty of spirit. 

4) The power of Jesus brings poverty of spirit. 

5) Being poor in spirit is a continuing process. 

6) Being poor in spirit is countercultural. 

7) Poverty of spirit is voluntary 

The Beatitudes are…

1) the defining marks of a Christian.

2) a progression.

3) keys to unlocking the blessing of God.

Application: The poor are always begging. They are not afraid to ask.

The POOR IN SPIRIT are much in prayer. (an active prayer life)

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