The Beatitudes – Part 7

(Click here to search for all the posts in this series…)

When we ARE this:

It allows us to BE this:

Poor in spirit and realize our utter helplessness and reach to God as a spiritual beggar in need of rescuing then we can be…

Merciful. We can show mercy to those around us know matter what status they have in life, no matter what their past, no matter how different they are from us. We all start out in the same place with the same need with the same hopelessness.

Mourning over our sin beginning to understand the destruction it causes, our potential to indulge in it, and learning more and more how much it grieves God allows us to continue to grow….

Pure in Heart. We will seek to be pure in heart as a result of mourning our sin. The more contrite and broken we become over sin, the more we desire the holiness and purity of God.

Meek and gentle learning to live in supreme confidence under supreme Holy Spirit control forsaking the need to pursue our “rights”, get what’s “fair” and defending our self against every perceived offense; we are now ready to be…

Peacemakers. Lesson 8

Hungry and thirsty for righteousness cultivating an ever increasing and single-minded hunger to serve God and know Him better which gives us a foundation to endure being…

Persecuted. Lesson 9

· Psalms 24:4 He who has clean hands and a pure heart, Who has not lifted up his soul to an idol, Nor sworn deceitfully.

· Psalm 73:1 Truly God is good to Israel, to such as are pure in heart.

  • 1 Timothy 1:3-7 As I urged you when I went into Macedonia—remain in Ephesus that you may charge some that they teach no other doctrine, 4 nor give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which cause disputes rather than godly edification which is in faith. 5 Now the purpose of the commandment is love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith, 6 from which some, having strayed, have turned aside to idle talk, 7 desiring to be teachers of the law, understanding neither what they say nor the things which they affirm.
  • 2 Timothy 2:19-26 The Lord knows those who are His,” and, “Let everyone who names the name of Christ depart from iniquity.” 20 But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay, some for honor and some for dishonor. 21 Therefore if anyone cleanses himself from the latter, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work. 22 Flee also youthful lusts; but pursue righteousness, faith, love, peace with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. 23 But avoid foolish and ignorant disputes, knowing that they generate strife. 24 And a servant of the Lord must not quarrel but be gentle to all, able to teach, patient, 25 in humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may know the truth, 26 and that they may come to their senses and escape the snare of the devil, having been taken captive by him to do his will.
  • 1 Peter 1:22-23 Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart, 23 having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever…
  • Psalm 24 The earth is the Lords, in all its fullness, the world and those who dwell in it. He founded it on the seas, and established it on the waters. Who may ascend into the hill of the Lord? Who may stand in His Holy place? Answer: Matt 5:8 says the pure in heart, that’s who! They shall see God.
  • Proverbs 20: 9 Who can say, “I have made my heart clean, I am pure from my sin”? Answer: only those who have been washed in the soul cleansing blood of the Lamb.

The pure in heart will see God. The pure in heart are those people who, through a broken spirit have reached out to God and seen the sad state of their sinfulness and the destruction it has caused.

The pure in heart are alive with the Spirit’s conscience allowing Him to purify everything act, every thought, every motive and every attitude.

There are different kinds of purity:

  • Fundamental purity – the purity of God. This is the essence of purity. Purity in this sense is not an attribute, it is the primal element. It is what everything pure is compared to. It IS purity in its very existence.
  • Secondary purity – this kind of purity is the purity that God creates from Himself. The original creation of the universe and man was pure until sin entered.
  • Recreated purity – eventually the heavens and earth will be recreated and saved men will receive a glorified body recreated in eternal purity to exist with God.
  • Accounted purity – this is the purity that is applied to us, or accounted to us through Christ’s sacrifice. When we are saved, God sees us as pure because of Christ even though our actual existence has not yet seen purity in whole.
  • Relative purity – This type of purity is a false purity that is obtained by measuring against an impure standard such as other people or society in general. This is the type of purity that deceives us into thinking we’re “not that bad”.
  • Deceptive purity – this is purity perceived from ignorance or false teaching. We may sincerely seek a purity that is less than God’s standard if we do not soak ourselves in His Word.
  • Practical purity – this is the purity of our daily lives. This is the purity that we continually work on and fail to achieve while in this life. This is the purity that we must pray for an ask God to increase in our lives every day.

Psalm 51:10 Create in me a clean heart O God.

Purity in our lives today has become somewhat of a laughable, outdated, old-fashioned kind of joke. In the back of our minds we know the truth of its need, but it is easier to make light of our failures than it is to mourn our true sinfulness.

Today’s typical Christian uses the world to measure their own purity and stays just enough “purer” to be able to justify very worldly standards in their everyday living. We don’t:

  • Watch movies that are as bad
  • Tell jokes that are as raw
  • Use language that is as vulgar
  • Gamble as much
  • Lust as much
  • Dress as immodestly
  • Listen to as bad of music

… than the world. And if that’s not enough we:

  • Go to church more than them
  • Give more money than them
  • Do more good things than them
  • Look and act more Godly than them

The totality of our “don’ts” and “do’s” allow us to rationalize and justify sin in our lives and become comfortable with a level of purity far below what we would accept if God, and God alone, were our standard. It has been said that:

Most Christians have just enough of the world in them to make them miserable at church, and just enough God in them to make them miserable out in the world.

2 Corinthians 7:1 Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.

What does it mean to be pure in heart?

  • It means living an uncompromising life measured only to God’s standard ignoring what has been acceptable or “good” in the culture you live in.
  • It means avoiding all comparison of your life to other people and measuring it only by God’s perfection.
  • It means asking God continually through the Spirit to clearly reveal all areas of impurity in your life
  • It means realizing that with our own human effort it is impossible to be pure and that only God Himself can impart purity that is acceptable in His eyes
    • Think of that. God calls us to purity. God demands purity. But yet being the merciful and great God that He is, He freely blesses us with the very thing that He demands. This principle is true of everything God asks from us. Whatever He asks, He is the One who gives it to start with.
  • It means continually living in God’s presence with a pure and fervent desire to be pure.
  • It means being pure in motive. All pure acts are derived from pure motive. No act, no matter how apparently good, is worthwhile if our motives aren’t pure. The Master Surgeon will diagnose, reveal and remove impure motives if only we will make an appointment for an examination or surgery!
  • It means engaging in self examination of our everyday life:
    • What forms of impure entertainment do I enjoy?
    • What impure clothing do I wear?
    • What impure acts do I commit?
    • What disciplines do I forsake that contribute to my less than pure standard of living?
    • What impure words do I allow?
    • What impurity in attitude is tolerated?
    • What kind of impure behavior is rationalized because of circumstance?
    • Do my friends and those I spend time with encourage and live a life of purity as well? Or do they feed my worldly desires and ambitions? Surround yourself with those people who consistently demonstrate the Godly qualities you should have.
  • It means prayerfully engaging in self examination of our spiritual life:
    • Is my worship impure?
    • What impurity exists in my motives to serve God?
    • What parts of my praying are not pure in God’s eyes?
    • What “Christian” activities or habits fall short of God’s purity?

Becoming pure in heart is hard work. It requires continual diligence, effort, examination and sweat. We war with our flesh and it is not a mere skirmish. It is a World War for our heart and dedication to God. Praise God we already know who will ultimately win the War, but our duty today is to fight the daily battles. And fight we must. Purity on a practical daily level is not free, it is not cheap, it is not easily obtained; it is elusive, fleeting and fragile for the time being while we live in a sinful fallen world.

But the superior satisfaction of living a pure life in God’s eyes is not to be compared with the cheap thrills and pleasures this life has to offer.

Acts 15:9 …purifying their hearts by faith.

Faith is the means by which we are purified. But what is faith? Apart from a 14 word description in Hebrews[1] the Bible really does not define faith. Even the description in Hebrews describes the evidence of faith, not what it actually is. Faith is assumed, just like the wind, or the light. It just is.

Faith is our focus on God. It is like our eyes, always looking outward, incapable of looking back on itself. What your eyes focus on becomes what you have faith in. Focus on the world; put your faith in this world. Focus on God; your faith will be in Him.

Faith in God, focusing your eyes solely on Him will create purity in your life.
It is the only way, the proven way, the sure way, God’s way.

And blessed are those who are pure in heart….
For they shall see Heaven!

Lesson 7 Notes – Blessed Are The Pure In Heart

When we ARE this:

It allows us to BE this:

Poor in spirit

Merciful.

Mourning over our sin

Pure in Heart.

Meek and gentle

Peacemakers.

Hungry and thirsty

Persecuted.

The ________________ will see God. The pure in heart are those people who, through a broken spirit have reached out to God and seen the sad state of their sinfulness and the destruction it has caused.

The pure in heart are alive with the Spirit’s conscience allowing Him to purify everything act, every thought, every motive and every attitude.

There are different kinds of purity:

  • Fundamental purity – ____________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

  • Secondary purity – ____________________________________________________

______________________________________________________________________

  • Recreated purity – ____________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

  • Accounted purity – ____________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

  • Practical purity – ____________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

Psalm 51:10 Create in me ___________________________________________.

Most Christians have ______________________________ in them to make them miserable

at church, and ____________________ in them to make them miserable out in the world.

2 Corinthians 7:1 Therefore, having these promises, beloved, ____________________________

from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, _____________________________ in the fear of God.

What does it mean to be pure in heart?

Acts 15:9 …purifying their hearts by ___________________________________.

Faith in God, focusing your eyes _________________ will create purity in your life.

It is the _________ way, the _________ way, the _________ way, _________ way.

Lesson 7 – Group Discussion, Private Contemplation & Application

Group Discussion:

1. What areas of our lives do we accept a lower standard of purity in because we are comparing it to world?

2. Why is purity something discussed in churches but infrequently and completely implemented in our lives?

Private Contemplation:

1. When was the last time you did a “purity” inventory? Have you accepted impurity out of defeat, frustration or love of sin?

2. What areas of your life do you most compromise when it comes to purity? Language? Entertainment? Lust? Sex? Selfishness? Have you examined yourself and asked God to give you the strength to become pure in these areas?

Life Application Suggestions:

1. If you do not have a time of regular prayer, commit to spending the first ten minutes of each day this week asking God to instill purity in you and to instill in you the true meaning of it.

2. Besides your spouse, choose one other person in this group and pray each day that God will make these truths REAL in that person’s life.

3. Read Matthew 5:1-12 one time each day this week and spend 5 minutes contemplating and meditating on the words. Ask God to reveal the truth of the words to your heart and mind.



[1] Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

(seriesid:2)


The Beatitudes – Part 6

(Click here to search for all the posts in this series…)

When we ARE this:

It allows us to BE this:

Poor in spirit and realize our utter helplessness and reach to God as a spiritual beggar in need of rescuing then we can be…

Merciful. We can show mercy to those around us know matter what status they have in life, no matter what their past, no matter how different they are from us. We all start out in the same place with the same need with the same hopelessness.

Mourning over our sin beginning to understand the destruction it causes, our potential to indulge in it, and learning more and more how much it grieves God allows us to continue to grow….

Pure in Heart. Lesson 7

Meek and gentle learning to live in supreme confidence under supreme Holy Spirit control forsaking the need to pursue our “rights”, get what’s “fair” and defending our self against every perceived offense; we are now ready to be…

Peacemakers. Lesson 8

Hungry and thirsty for righteousness cultivating an ever increasing and single-minded hunger to server God and know Him better which gives us a foundation to endure being…

Persecuted. Lesson 9

Being merciful is the direct result of understanding our original condition, and realizing that we were no better off than any other person, nor any more deserving of being rescued by God.

When we strive to understand “poor in spirit”, it changes how we view other people. Instead of looking at someone as lazy, immoral, dirty, hopeless, unredeemable and not worth the effort; we now see them as a person who needs God, and needs the same rescuing God graciously granted us.

We all start out in the same condition. See people according to what
God can make of them, not what they are.

Modern America sees mercy as weakness. We are encouraged to:

· Be aggressive and unrelenting

· Be cut throat and look out for our self

· Pursue OUR rights, what’s mine, what’s fair, what I deserve

· Tough luck, too bad, should have thought of that, better luck next time

At the time Jesus spoke these words, mercy was unknown in general society. The Romans were politically unmerciful, and the ruling religious Jews were merciless in their hypocrisy.

Mercy must spring from a genuine internal change in our heart. We realize God saved us from our hopeless, pitiful state and He can do the same for ANY other person. As every Beatitude loudly proclaims, God is not interested in superficial external spiritual appearance or activity.

Amos 5:21-24 “I hate, I despise your feast days, And I do not savor your sacred assemblies. Though you offer Me burnt offerings and your grain offerings, I will not accept them, Nor will I regard your fattened peace offerings. Take away from Me the noise of your songs, For I will not hear the melody of your stringed instruments. But let justice run down like water, And righteousness like a mighty stream.

God wants our righteousness to flow out of our changed life, our recognition of God as our only hope.

Our motivation cannot be that we will be merciful because we will receive mercy in return for showing it (on a human level). Most likely it will be taken for granted, abused and unappreciated. The type of mercy God wants us to show to others is a direct result of our appreciation that God Himself has already bestowed on us the greatest mercy possible.

The merciful are characterized by a caring attitude towards those who are in physical and spiritual misery. They take the heartaches of others to heart.

Greek: eleemon { el-eh-ay’-mone} (merciful)

Mercy: eleeo { el-eh-eh’-o}

1) to have mercy on

2) to help one afflicted or seeking aid

3) to help the afflicted, to bring help to the wretched

4) to experience mercy

The result of being merciful, is to gain God’s mercy.

True mercy is genuine, compassionate, selfless giving of yourself to the needs of others. It seeks no reward, no recognition, no pay back. It is God’s love in action towards others in need.

  • Psalms 6:2 Have mercy on me, O Lord, for I am weak

    God shows mercy on us in our weakness, we should have the same compassion when others display weakness.

  • Psalms 25:7 Do not remember the sins of my youth, nor my transgressions; According to Your mercy remember me, For Your goodness’ sake, O Lord.

    God mercifully forgets our sins, we owe the same mercy to our fellow man.

  • Psalm 32:10 Many sorrows shall be to the wicked; But he who trusts in the Lord, mercy shall surround him.

    The unmerciful will reap what they sow.

  • Proverbs 14:21 He who despises his neighbor sins; But he who has mercy on the poor, happy is he.

    Have mercy, be happy. Simple enough.

  • Ephesians 2:4-5 But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved)

    God showed mercy on us when we were dead, hopeless, destitute, wallowing in our sin; he can do the same for any other person and we are to see that potential in every person.

  • Titus 3:4-7 But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

  • James 2:13 For judgment is without mercy to the one who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment.

    God grants mercy to the merciful.

  • Psalm 18:25 With the merciful You will show Yourself merciful; With a blameless man You will show Yourself blameless

  • Luke 6:36 Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.

    We are to show mercy simply because we are imitating God when we do it.

  • Luke 18:13b ‘God, be merciful to me a sinner!’

    Then let me show the same mercy to every other sinner for if God shows me mercy as sinner, who am I to deny to another in the same circumstance?

  • Matthew 18:23-35 Therefore the kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. And when he had begun to settle accounts, one was brought to him who owed him ten thousand talents.

    But as he was not able to pay, his master commanded that he be sold, with his wife and children and all that he had, and that payment be made. The servant therefore fell down before him, saying, ‘Master, have patience with me, and I will pay you all.’ Then the master of that servant was moved with compassion, released him, and forgave him the debt.

    “But that servant went out and found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii; and he laid hands on him and took him by the throat, saying, ‘Pay me what you owe!’ So his fellow servant fell down at his feet and begged him, saying, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you all.’ And he would not, but went and threw him into prison till he should pay the debt. So when his fellow servants saw what had been done, they were very grieved, and came and told their master all that had been done.

    Then his master, after he had called him, said to him, ‘You wicked servant! I forgave you all that debt because you begged me. Should you not also have had compassion on your fellow servant, just as I had pity on you?’ And his master was angry, and delivered him to the torturers until he should pay all that was due to him.

    “So My heavenly Father also will do to you if each of you, from his heart, does not forgive his brother his trespasses.”

    The lesson is clear. God shows us mercy. We are to show mercy. To fail to do so puts you in danger of God’s wrath. God forgave our debt (because Christ paid for it) and it is the height of ungratefulness to be unmerciful to another who is in need of the same mercy and forgiveness.

What are practical ways of showing mercy?

Tangibly in our everyday lives

  • Give to the poor, help the needy
  • Forgive and have compassion on those who mistreat us
  • Never retaliate or seek revenge
  • Avoid gossip or satisfaction in others failures

In our spiritual lives

  • Pray for others, especially those we dislike or who mistreat us
  • Witness to anyone and everyone despite our impression of the potential
  • Love and care for those who are unkind to us or misuse us
  • Preaching, teaching, praying and encouraging of all

Lesson 6 Notes – Blessed Are Those Who Practice Mercy

When we ARE this:

It allows us to BE this:

Poor in spirit

Merciful.

Mourning over our sin

Pure in Heart.

Meek and gentle

Peacemakers.

Hungry and thirsty

Persecuted.

We all start out in the same ____________________________.

See people according to what God _________________________________,

not _________________________________________.

Modern America sees mercy as weakness. We are encouraged to:

Greek: eleemon { el-eh-ay’-mone} (merciful)

The result of being merciful, is to .

· Psalms 6:2 Have mercy on me, O Lord, for I am weak


· Psalms 25:7 Do not remember the sins of my youth, nor my transgressions; According to Your mercy remember me, For Your goodness’ sake, O Lord.

· Psalm 32:10 Many sorrows shall be to the wicked; But he who trusts in the Lord, mercy shall surround him.

· Proverbs 14:21 He who despises his neighbor sins; But he who has mercy on the poor, happy is he.

· Ephesians 2:4-5 But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved)

· Titus 3:4-7 But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

· James 2:13 For judgment is without mercy to the one who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment.

· Psalm 18:25 With the merciful You will show Yourself merciful; With a blameless man You will show Yourself blameless

· Luke 6:36 Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.

· Luke 18:13b ‘God, be merciful to me a sinner!’

What are practical ways of showing mercy?


Lesson 6 – Group Discussion, Private Contemplation & Application

Group Discussion:

1. Do you ever see someone and think they are worthless, not worth your time, effort or energy? Can you just “tell” they are passed the point of being used by God?

2. What is your attitude and treatment of those who mistreat you? Are you merciful to ALL, or do you pick and choose?

Private Contemplation:

1. In the private thoughts of your own heart, are you merciful? Do you find yourself characterizing others as stupid, worthless, hopeless? Do you position yourself personally or in business against others with the attitude of “too bad”, “tough luck”, “oh well”, “should have thought of that”…. In other words, are you merciful, or do you look at for yourself?

2. Identify the person(s) who mistreat you, persecute you, treat you unfairly, misuse you, lie about you and generally enjoy making your life miserable. Are you merciful to them?

Life Application Suggestions:

1. If you do not have a time of regular prayer, commit to spending the first ten minutes of each day this week asking God to instill mercy in you and to instill in you the true meaning of it.

2. Besides your spouse, choose one other person in this group and pray each day that God will make these truths REAL in that person’s life.

3. Read Matthew 5:1-12 one time each day this week and spend 5 minutes contemplating and meditating on the words. Ask God to reveal the truth of the words to your heart and mind..



[1] Ephesians 1:13 In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise

(seriesid:2)


The Beatitudes – Part 5

(Click here to search for all the posts in this series…)

  • We are poor in spirit because we understand our total helplessness and dependence on God rescuing us.
  • We mourn because we begin to understand the true nature of sin, it destruction and our potential for it.
  • We are meek because we start to grasp the infinite Holiness of God and any pride or “self’ in our lives melts under the reality.

We can now hunger and thirst for the righteousness:

  • Because God has given us the ability to desire His way
  • In order to distance ourselves from the sin we have become sensitive to
  • and to move us towards the holiness that we have glimpsed in God.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled.
Matt 5:6

Hungering and thirsting are descriptions of desire. Americans don’t know true desire. Few of us have ever truly starved or lived in destitution. Fewer still have been denied water for any length of time. Our desires are filled quickly and without restraint.

What it is to truly desire something?

  • Hold your breath
  • At some point you will think of nothing else; you will do whatever takes to get a breath
  • It will at some point become all consuming
  • Finally you will become so desperate that there is no possession, no ambition, no habit, no sin…. Nothing, that you won’t give trade for a breath of air.
  • You won’t care about the promotion you didn’t get, the person who offended you yesterday, the lack of money in your bank account, the boring preacher at church or anything other thing at all for that matter
  • That is true desire

Desire = Discipline (action)

True desire is only as real as what you are willing to do, to sacrifice, to suffer in order to get the desired object. We often say we “desire” something; we desire to be a better Christian. But that desire is only as real as what we will actually do to get it. If our desire is like our need for oxygen after holding our breath, then our action (discipline) will follow.

The idea is a continual hungering and thirsting (desire). Present tense. It never ends. We should hunger for greater and greater righteousness.

Notice this Scripture does not say “blessed are those who HAVE righteousness”. The blessing comes from never being satisfied with our present level of righteousness.

A Christian should never think “I’ve arrived”.

Proverbs 16:18 – Pride goes before destruction, And a haughty spirit before a fall.

  • No matter how much you obey, you should thirst for greater obedience.
  • No matter how much you pray, how humble you are or how holy your life is, you should have an insatiable desire to increase in all those areas.
  • No matter how much like Christ we become, it should pale in comparison to what we should desire to become.

That’s not to say we will be frustrated and never satisfied. To the contrary, the very same verse proclaims “For they shall be filled”. It is another beautiful paradox of Christianity. We can never get enough, but God will give us satisfaction.

Psalm 17:15 – As for me, I will see Your face in righteousness; I shall be satisfied when I awake in Your likeness.

Psalm 36:8 – They are abundantly satisfied with the fullness of Your house, And You give them drink from the river of Your pleasures.

God is infinite. His holiness is infinite. His righteousness is infinite. So no matter what level of righteousness we attain, there is still an infinite table to feast at, and infinite fountain to drink from.

This hunger comes chronologically in two parts:

  1. A hunger for salvation
  2. A hunger for sanctification

Our hunger for salvation is satisfied at the moment of conversion. [1] Our spirit is renewed, the Holy Spirit indwells us and from that moment on testifies to us of our right standing before God. We will struggle with the issue of assurance, but that is another study.

From that point until the day we die, we should maintain a growing, insatiable hunger to become more and more like Christ. And we will be filled. Guaranteed.

This is not a hungering for moments of righteousness or parts of our life being righteous; but a longing for the Godly totality of righteousness which we can have in part now, and will be blessed with upon meeting Jesus.

  • Greek: dikaiosuna (justification, “right with God”)

The only REAL source of happiness in this life is
to be right with God, period.

Jesus teaches TRUE happiness in the Beatitudes. His teaching opposes everything we would naturally think would bring happiness.

Psalm 11:7 – For the Lord is righteous, He loves righteousness; His countenance beholds the upright.

Jesus says that until we:

  • Are a poor, helpless, defenseless beggar with no hope but God;
  • Grieve over the horrible nature of sin in general, and especially over what sin has done in our lives, and our potential to sin even more;
  • Are ready to live in humility, not worrying about what’s “fair” or how we’ve been offended, living in supreme holy spirit control;
  • Have a insatiable desire to become more and more holy in our lives; an all consuming, single focus to be more like Christ;

Until we are at this point, we can’t know true, long lasting happiness. But He promises it when we do conform our lives to His teaching.

Scripture teaches us to rejoice in ALL things including sorrow, suffering, trials and persecution. So it stands to say that:

If we are unhappy, somewhere along the way, we have not been holy.

That’s tough to swallow, but true none the less.

How can we tell if we are hungering and thirsting for righteousness?

  • Do you long for God’s word? God’s people? Time with God alone?

    If no, then some soul searching is needed. The most obvious place to start is with how much worldliness are you allowing in your life which chokes out the Spirit in your life? You need to truthfully examine the amount of “world” that you have allowed to take the throne in your life:

    • Movies, music, magazines, Internet
    • Language
    • Recreational activities
    • Work, money, ambition, recognition
    • Lust, pride, greed, strife
    • How do you spend your time? (how much does God get across the board)
  • Are you satisfied with your current level of Godliness, or do you even think about it?

    The question is answered in two parts. First, do you think you’re “not that bad” and just kind of living on spiritual cruise control? If yes, then some open-hearted Bible study on sin and holiness is needed.

    • No matter how holy we become in this life, we are an infinite distance away from perfection.

The second part of this question is not whether we are satisfied with our current state, but whether or not we even think about it at all!

When is the last time you did a spiritual inventory of your life?

When is the last time you even gave any thought to righteousness?

When is the last time you truthfully examined your level of “hunger” for God?

· Are you satisfied by anything but God?

No matter how temporary, do you have to admit the only time you truly feel happy and satisfied is when:

o You have a great period of financial prosperity

o You have a girl friend or boy friend

o You get to buy something new like clothes, a car or a vacation

o You are having “fun”

o You are indulging in sin

If anything of this world brings you joy in place of God, it has become your God.

If God truly has first place in your life, then the joys of “life” are
a true blessing and can be enjoyed, and attributed to God.

If God is not reigning Supreme in your life, then any joy we have from temporal things is counterfeit and will only serve to draw us further away from Him.

· Does the thought of Godliness bring a smile to your face and evoke emotions of love and sweetness in your heart?

Have you ever noticed that those who live in God’s presence just ooze with sweetness, tenderness and peace? They almost ooze love and warmth. They are those people you want to be around all the time because you always leave them feeling good. Are you one of those people? Do you hunger to be that type of person? It comes from righteousness.

· Does your hunger for God ebb and flow with your circumstances?

Some hunger for God when things get tough. Others take control during tough times, but find it easy to “praise God” when everything is going great.

Obviously, both extremes are wrong. Our longing for God should not be dependent on our external circumstances. Quite the opposite, our joy should flow from our hunger for God, completely unaffected by what is happening in our life.

Our hunger and thirst for God in reality has absolutely nothing to do with our lot in life.

A hungry man is interested in food, not material possessions. When you are starving to death you don’t care about a bigger house or a new boat. You want food.

When you’re tongue is swollen and you’re dehydrated because of lack of water, you don’t think about how unfair your boss is, or how somebody offended you. You want water. Period.

That’s true hungering and thirsting for righteousness.

Lesson 5 Notes – Blessed Are The Hungry and Thirsty

  • We are poor in spirit because
  • We mourn because
  • We are meek because

We can now hunger and thirst for the righteousness:

  • Because God has
  • In order to distance ourselves from

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness

.
Matt 5:6

Desire =

True desire is only as real as what you are willing to do, to sacrifice, to suffer in order to get the desired object. We often say we “desire” something; we desire to be a better Christian. But that desire is only as real as what we will actually do to get it. If our desire is like our need for oxygen after holding our breath, then our action (discipline) will follow.

  • No matter how much you obey,
  • No matter how much you pray, how humble you are or how holy your life is, you should

  • No matter how much like Christ we become, it should pale in comparison to

This hunger comes chronologically in two parts:

  1. A hunger for

  2. A hunger for
  • Greek:

The only REAL source of happiness in this life is

If we are unhappy, somewhere along the way,

How can we tell if we are hungering and thirsting for righteousness?

  • Do you long for

  • Are you ___________ with your current level of Godliness, or do you even think about it?

Are you satisfied by ?

· Does the thought of Godliness bring a _______________________ and evoke emotions

of ____________________________________ ?

Does your hunger for God ebb and flow with your ___________________________ ?

Lesson 5 – Group Discussion, Private Contemplation & Application

Group Discussion:

1. Do you have a true hunger and thirst for righteousness?

2. If not, can you pinpoint worldly things that you have allowed, or ignored, that are crowding out your hunger for God?

Private Contemplation:

1. In the private thoughts of your own heart, how much are you allowing your love and enjoyment of sin to choke out your desire for righteousness?

2. Why do you think you still hang on to sinful pleasures, habits and lifestyles? Have you asked God to give you wisdom and reveal to you the true horrible nature of sin?

3. Do you have a superficial desire for righteousness that does not manifest itself in the form of real discipline, action and sacrifice? Why? How do you change it?

Life Application Suggestions:

1. If you do not have a time of regular prayer, commit to spending the first ten minutes of each day this week asking God to instill in you the desire for righteousness and to instill in you the true meaning of it.

2. Besides your spouse, choose one other person in this group and pray each day that God will make these truths REAL in that person’s life.

3. Read Matthew 5:1-12 one time each day this week and spend 5 minutes contemplating and meditating on the words. Ask God to reveal the truth of the words to your heart and mind..

(seriesid:2)


The Beatitudes – Part 4

(Click here to search for all the posts in this series…)

Blessed are those who practice Holy Spirit self-control.

We live in country and a time that is out of control. Pursuit of personal short-term pleasure and personal gain is the rule.

If you think it, say it. If you feel like it, do it. If you don’t want to, don’t. If you’re unhappy, leave. If you want it, take it. If you don’t agree, do what you want anyway. Get yours. You deserve it.

“Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth”. Matt 5:5

Meekness speaks of supreme self-control by the Holy Spirit, which produces a quiet, gentle, tenderhearted confident response to life. It is disciplined power, strength under Godly control.

Our religious life can be marked by the same disastrous “self” control:

· Spiritual pride

· Self sufficiency

· Hypocritical piety

· Religion without God

· Looking good, doing the right things

· Popular, feel-good Christianity

“But Lord, look what I do for you”. Exactly the opposite of meekness. America’s Christian environment looks for flash, superstars, marketing, excitement and good feeling experiences. We believe God needs the rich, the mighty, the talented, the popular, the famous, the charismatic, the showmen.

Where “broken in spirit” speaks of knowing your sin, meekness speaks of knowing God’s holiness. We are meek because we begin to understand how infinitely high and holy God is and we want him to control our every act.

Meekness produces righteousness as we submit to God’s holy control. We deny and sacrifice our own feelings and desires to God’s lead and timing.

The opposite is arrogant, self-sufficient, proud, and unrepentant, self-willed and stiff necked.

What does is mean to be meek?

· Greek- praos (mild, gentle, soft)

This is manifested as a supreme calmness because of, and surrender to, God’s leading and control. The meek person is quiet, gentle and unassuming simply because of the confidence of being under the total control of the Spirit. This person doesn’t:

· Have to draw attention to themselves

· Have to have their own way

· Have to pursue their own happiness at all costs

· Seek themselves first at the cost of others

· Have to be first

· Have to be noticed

· Have to have justice for every injustice

· Need for all things to be “fair”

The meek person is identified by:

  • Calmness – they are not shaken or excited by circumstances because they know God is in control of all things, including themselves
  • Self control – they are not impulsive, destructive or selfish because they are giving in to the control of the Holy Spirit
  • Gentleness – they are not aggressive and controlling but gentle and loving responding to people and situations with God’s love and holiness. There is no need to “man-handle” the situation when you know that God is sovereign.
  • Mildness – the meek person avoids extreme reactions and behavior. A meek person is mild and approachable, bringing comfort, calmness and peace to those around him.
  • Quietness – the meek person is quiet and confident. He is peaceful and serene in a hective and out of control world. The meek person does not have to be heard, does not have the need to voice every opinion he has and make sure his point gets heard no matter how unfair or wrong he may perceive the situation. He speaks out only when the Spirit leads, disregarding his own welfare, agenda and desires.
  • Tender heart – understanding God’s holiness, love and mercy allows us to be very tender and forgiving towards others. Being poor in spirit (understanding OUR sin) coupled with being meek (understanding God’s holiness) produces the ultimate soft heart towards others
  • Humility – the meek person understands God’s holiness, and being poor in spirit as well, this brings the meek person to complete humility
  • Supreme confidence – being under the total control and leading of the Holy Spirit gives us complete and unshakable confidence. If we are truly following, and pleasing, God in all our actions, what man can shake our peace and confidence?

Meekness does NOT mean:

  • Impotence – it is in no way some sort of weak-kneed, wishy-washy door mat attitude. Meekness is not weakness. To the contrary, the more meek we are, the more powerful we are.
  • Hypocritical humility – meekness is not a false humility that seeks to manipulate through pity or an outward appearance of “look how humble I am”
  • Cowardice – there is no lack of backbone or bravery in true meekness, to the contrary it is the ultimate devotion and commitment

SUPREME POWER AND CONFIDENCE
UNDER SUPREME SPIRIT CONTROL

One of the hardest aspects of meekness is that a meek man quits striving to get his “due”, to get what he believes is “fair”, to get what he “deserves”. This goes against everything American.

“I deserve…” marks the selfish man. It has become the buzz word, the catch phrase, the mantra, the theme of American life. And it consumes a better part of our life until we truly become meek.

A sure mark of a person who is NOT meek is the person who is continually trying to correct or point out what is not “fair”, or how they are misunderstood, or things aren’t “right” according to their opinion, or how things could be better.

Do you find yourself constantly criticizing, pointing out wrong, even if you only do it in private? What do you think you deserve but don’t have?

Here are some areas that will become very prominent in our thoughts when meekness is missing or uncultivated:

  • Recognition – are you not getting the awards, the recognition, the status that you think you deserve? Are others around you getting the notice that you think right belongs to you?
  • Compensation – is someone getting paid the same, or more than you and its not fair? Are you making sure your opinion on the matter is known? Are you jealous or critical of those who make more, or get more than you? Are you in a continual process (subconsciously or knowingly) of correcting that perceived inequity?
  • Popularity – Do you find it annoying and bothersome when there are others around you that are “liked” or befriended instead of you, or more than you? Does this manifest itself in your life making you an expert “fault finder” and always being able to “discern” and point out the “negative” about others that somehow has been missed by everyone but you? Are you a critical, nit picky, fault-finding, “negative” person?
  • Criticism – the person missing meekness can easily and constantly criticize EVERYTHING.
    • Work – the company is poorly run. The bosses are idiots, incompetent, or unfair. The pay is not fair. The wrong people get recognized. The product, procedures and services could be better. The job is not appreciated, but tolerated, and would be abandoned the moment something “better” came along.
    • Church – the preaching is boring. The music is not entertaining enough. The teachers are not interesting enough. The church expects to much. Almost everything could be done differently or in a better way in your opinion.
    • Criticism manifests itself in every aspect of this persons life, never missing a chance to point out a fault, a deficiency, a lacking, an incompetency… it becomes a lifestyle instilling a sense of power and superiority in the criticizer because by default, they must be smarter and better than the object of criticism because they were able to see the faults in the first place
  • The need to be right – the person lacking meekness necessarily mistakes being “right” for being “righteous”. Being right becomes the standard by which all arguments are fought to the bitter end regardless of the hurt or destruction. After all, I’m right.

Meekness accepts that we will not always be treated fair or get what we should rightfully get. Our pay or recognition may not be equitable or fair. Our opinions, even when right, may not count, may not be heard. And it shouldn’t matter. Meekness knows that God is in control; He knows all, sees all; understands all.

Ultimately God will right the wrongs, compensate justly, recognize the truly deserving. In the mean time, our only duty is to meekly submit to His holy sovereignty.

Abraham demonstrated this quality in Genesis 13 when he allowed Lot an “unfair” advantage, trusting God for his own welfare. Joseph embodied meekness in the face of the worst kind of injustice. What men had done for evil, God used for good. David’s meekness kept him from killing Saul when he had the chance.

God is not interested in fair. He is interested in submission.

And He will undoubtedly place us in unfair, inequitable, and improvement-needing situations to teach us this valuable quality. Meekness: accepting God’s holy sovereignty in our lives no matter what we would rather have or think we should have.

Meekness is supreme confidence and Holy Spirit-induced self-control that disregards our personal desire, understanding that His holiness is so far superior and beyond our understanding that only total submission to it begins to approach a proper response to it.

Think of Jesus’ life. In our understanding, was their anything “fair” about it? Did He seek His own way? Was He weak or cowardly? He was the perfect example of meekness, completely and utterly submissive to God’s control living a life of perfect holiness. Strong, brave, committed, self-sacrificing, humble, confident, peaceful, self-controlled… meekness personified.

1 Peter 2:21-24 For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps: “Who committed no sin, Nor was deceit found in His mouth”; who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously; who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness— by whose stripes you were healed.

The Apostle Paul, though great in responsibility and power, exercised meekness.

2 Corinthians 10:1 Now I, Paul, myself am pleading with you by the meekness and gentleness of Christ— who in presence am lowly among you, but being absent am bold toward you.

What is the source of meekness?

  • Poor in spirit is the natural response of knowing our dilemma.
  • Mourning is the natural response of beginning to understand our sin.

Meekness is the natural response of beginning to understand God’s holiness. There is such a great chasm between His Purity and our efforts, that we dare not be anything but meek.

Basketball players of all levels are meek in the presence of Michael Jordan. Computer enthusiasts are meek in the presence of Bill Gates. Mountain climbers are meek in the presence of Mt. Everest. Scientists are meek in the presence of the complexity of life or the vastness of the Universe.

These are weak analogies but they allow us to begin to grasp why meekness is the proper response to God’s holiness. He is so far greater, so much purer, and so infinitely higher than us that anyone whose spiritual eyes have been opened cannot help but feel awed and humbled in light of it.

So what does that have to do with self-control?

Meekness is spiritual calm, supreme confidence, complete self-control BECAUSE we begin to grasp that our Great and Holy God is in complete and utter control of everything. And that same Loving Father saved us, protects us, and cares for us. Meekness.

We don’t need to seek our own way, God is watching over us. We don’t have to worry about what’s “fair”, the Great Judge will make all things right. We don’t have to scurry about in anxiety trying to improve or fix our lives, the Supreme Ruler of the Universe is doing quite well all by Himself.

How can I know if I am meek?

The Christian can always measure and properly judge personal behavior against Biblical standards.

· Do I practice self control? Or do I live by the emotion of the moment?

· Do you “tell it like it is”? Or is your tongue tamed by love and patience?

· Do I criticize constantly, either publicly or privately? Is your life marked by the ability to find the negative in every person and situation? Do you disguise or excuse this ability calling it “discernment”?

· Are you easily irritated, annoyed or angered? These are the fleshly responses we are not getting our way or people aren’t acting the way we want them to act. We forget that God is in control of the world, not us.

· Do you respond humbly and submissively when the Bible points out your faults and shortcomings?

· Do you respond humbly when criticized, loving the person who speaks it, looking for any truth that may be in it?

· Do you correct, teach, rebuke or exhort others in patience and love?

Meekness: the quiet, gentle, tenderhearted and supremely self-controlled life that comes from knowing God’s holiness and surrendering to His control of our lives and our circumstances.

Psalm 37:11 But the meek shall inherit the earth, And shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace.

Matt 5:5 Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.

Ephesians 4:2-3 with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

1 Peter 3:4 rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God.

Zephaniah 2:3 Seek the Lord, all you meek of the earth, Who have upheld His justice.

Seek righteousness, seek humility. It may be that you will be hidden In the day of the Lord’s anger.

Psalm 149:4 For the Lord takes pleasure in His people; He will beautify the humble with salvation.

Happiness is:

  1. Poor in spirit: understanding our utter helplessness
  1. Mournful: understanding our sinfulness and sin’s awful consequences
  1. Meekness: understanding God’s holiness and living in the supreme confidence of it

Lesson 4 Notes – Blessed Are The Supremely Self-Controlled

Blessed are those who practice _________________________________________________.

“Self” control manifests it self by some of these behaviors:

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

What does is mean to be meek?

· Greek- ____________________________________________________________

What are a few things a meek person doesn’t feel the need to do:

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

The meek person is identified by:

· Calmness – ________________________________________________________

  • Self control – ________________________________________________________
  • Gentleness – ________________________________________________________
  • Mildness – ________________________________________________________
  • Quietness – ________________________________________________________
  • Tender heart – ________________________________________________________
  • Humility – ________________________________________________________
  • Supreme confidence – ___________________________________________________

Meekness does NOT mean:

  • Impotence – ___________________________________________________
  • Hypocritical humility – ___________________________________________________
  • Cowardice – ___________________________________________________

How can I know if I am meek?

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

· ________________________________________________________

Lesson 4 – Group Discussion, Private Contemplation & Application

Group Discussion:

1. What is the worldly impression of meekness?

2. What are the characteristics of truly meek person?

Private Contemplation:

1. Do you live in quiet confidence, trusting God’s sovereign plan for your life? Or do you live in discontent, discouragement and frustration that God has not got your life quite right yet?

2. Are you a critical, negative, fault finding person? Truthfully, what are you trying to gain or become by being that way? Be honest, there is a reason for all behavior.

3. How much of your life and emotional energy do you spend thinking about what it is not fair at work, at church, at home? How much effort do you put forth trying to correct those inequities or voice your opinion about them?

4. In the honest secrecy of your own thoughts, what is the level of struggle you have that everything is not the way you want? How does this reflect on your true trust in God’s sovereignty?

Life Application Suggestions:

1. If you do not have a time of regular prayer, commit to spending the first ten minutes of each day this week asking God to instill in you the desire for meeknes and to instill in you the true meaning of it.

2. Besides your spouse, choose one other person in this group and pray each day that God will make these truths REAL in that person’s life.

3. Read Matthew 5:1-12 one time each day this week and spend 5 minutes contemplating and meditating on the words. Ask God to reveal the truth of the words to your heart and mind..

(seriesid:2)


The Beatitudes – Part 3

(Click here to search for all the posts in this series…)

Truly happy. Jesus Himself said it is possible.

So far we have learned that to begin the transformation into Godly happiness, you must first recognize your need for God and your total helplessness and dependence on him.

Once that is established, we now begin to see what that understanding reveals about us. The first and most obvious is our sinfulness.

And it causes us to mourn. Or it should.

“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted”. Matt 5:4

Greek: Pentheo (pen thay oh)

To mourn over; inner grief; related to the greek terms for grief which speak of striking your bosom, or beating your chest in grief

I. Normal Sorrow as a Part of Life

A. Proper Sorrow

Obviously there is a proper time and reason for sorrow and mourning in the course of every day life. This sorrow is a God-given way to deal with loss and heartache. God will comfort us through these times.

1. Grief

2. Loneliness

3. Suffering

4. Sadness

B. Improper Sorrow

As with all things, mankind can take proper sorrow and make it sinful. We have a knack for corrupting all things!

Sorrow can be used as self-pity, pride, attention getting or manipulation.

1. Sorrow for more sin

Man being desperately wicked can actually mourn over missing out on MORE sin! This is a heart truly given over to sin. [14] Amnon actually mourned until he was sick because he couldn’t sleep with his own sister.

Remember that ONLY God’s mercy and grace keeps us from being even MORE wicked than that, so avoid the temptation of thinking you “would never do that”.

2. Extended mourning over loss

There is a proper time and duration for mourning over loss whether of a loved one, of opportunity, of freedom or anything else we love.

Mourning helps us to relieve the stress, shelter our self in God and transition through times of loss.

However, there comes a point in time where the time for mourning over a loss ceases to fulfill its God-given purpose and becomes corrupted by our sin.

Extended mourning because you can’t release the burden to God, or because of spiritual immaturity, or mourning used for manipulation (pity, control, personal gain, etc) becomes sin.

3. Melodramatic sorrow for attention

The use of sorrow to gain attention, sympathy and favor is a distortion of God’s purpose for mourning. We should grieve together, and share our sorrows appropriately, but it should never move into a realm of using that sorrow to get others to “feel sorry” for you and show you attention that you would not otherwise get.

4. Sorrow motivated by improper guilt or motive

Sorrow must be produced from Godly motives and Biblical principles. If we sorrow because of improper guilt (“sorry you got caught”) or selfish motives (sorrow because you didn’t get something you wanted) then it is sinful, and the sorrow will not be comforted by God.

II. Godly Sorrow That Leads to Repentance

A. Sorrow over the existence of sin

Sorrow and mourning and tears over the very fact that sin exists [15] and grieves our God. Every aspect of our existence is currently tainted by sin.

B. Sorrow over what sin has done to God’s creation

Sin has caused creation to deteriorate, has influenced costless souls to choose eternal condemnation and keeps us from closer fellowship with God. It should cause us to sorrow deeply as we begin to learn of sins effect on man.

C. Sorrow for sin’s place and effect in our life

We should mourn how much of our life we give over to sin and how deeply it penetrates everything we do. It causes us to hurt others, lose fellowship with God, experience guilt and loss and causes us to battle daily to choose God and not our sin.

D. Sorrow over our love for sin

We love sin. It is (or should be) a daily battle to give it up for God. It should grieve us that deep down we would love to sin if we could get away with it. As we begin to truly understand sin, we will diminish our love for it.

E. Sorrow over the result of sin left unresolved

Sin that is ignored, excused or rationalized results in loss of fellowship and intimacy with the Lord. It seems we all have that one (or more) bastions of sin that we choose to ignore because deep down we don’t want to change:

· Movies

· “Innocent” fun (that’s really not)

· Taxes

· Recreation

· Laziness

· Gluttony

· What’s yours?

F. Sorrow for the suffering Jesus endured because of our sin

As the Elect, every sin we commit, is one more sin that Jesus bore and was tortured for. Every time we sin it would do us well to acknowledge and admit that we are adding to Jesus already considerable suffering with every indulgence.

Is the brief fulfillment of your fleshly lust worth another thorn in Jesus sinless head? Another tearing, ripping lash of the whip on His back? Another strike of the hammer on the nails in His hands and feet? Increasing the blackness and burden of bearing the punishment for your sin?

Next time you are about to sin, think of Jesus. Is the pleasure you are about to receive going to be worth the tears and sorrow you will feel the day you meet your Lord, look Him in those Innocent Eyes and realize you willingly increased His suffering so that you could enjoy sin?

G. Hindrances to Godly mourning

· Denial of sin

· Rationalization of sin

· Improper view of, or knowledge of sin

· Despair that God can’t “forgive” you for how bad you’ve been

· Conceit or arrogance that convinces you “I’m not that bad”

· Easy believism – “I prayed the prayer. I’m fine”

· Waiting…. Putting off the decision until….

· Pleasure seeking

III. The Result of Godly Sorrow

A. Joy, happiness

B. Comfort

C. Guilt free living

Lesson 3 Notes – Blessed Are Those Who Mourn Sin

“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be _______________________”. Matt 5:4

Greek: Pentheo (pen thay oh)


________________________________________________________

Normal Sorrow as a Part of Life

Proper Times to Sorrow

1. ________________________________________________________

2. ________________________________________________________

3. ________________________________________________________

4. ________________________________________________________

Improper Sorrow

1. ________________________________________________________

2. ________________________________________________________

3. ________________________________________________________

4. ________________________________________________________

Godly Sorrow That Leads to Repentance

Sorrow over the _______________________ of sin

Sorrow over what ______________ has done to God’s ____________________

Sorrow for sin’s _______________________ and _____________________ in our life

Sorrow over our _______________________ for sin

Sorrow over the _______________________ of sin left _______________________

Sorrow for the _______________________ Jesus endured because of our sin

Hindrances to Godly mourning

1. ________________________________________________________

2. ________________________________________________________

3. ________________________________________________________

4. ________________________________________________________

5. ________________________________________________________

6. ________________________________________________________

7. ________________________________________________________

8. ________________________________________________________

The Result of Godly Sorrow

________________________________________________________

________________________________________________________

________________________________________________________

________________________________________________________

________________________________________________________

Lesson 3 – Group Discussion, Private Contemplation & Application

Group Discussion:

1. Why is Godly sorrow a little taught or discussed subject in today’s church?

2. In what ways does our behavior announce that we do not mourn sin?

Private Contemplation:

1. Do you hate sin?

2. Does sin cause you to grieve, mourn and weep over the destruction it causes?

3. In private, do you really think YOUR sin is not that significant?

4. In what ways are you ignoring certain sin in your life because, truthfully, you don’t want to “quit” whatever it is?

Life Application Suggestions:

1. If you do not have a time of regular prayer, commit to spending the first ten minutes of each day this week asking God to instill in you the desire to “mourn sin” and to instill in you the true meaning of it.

2. Besides your spouse, choose one other person in this group and pray each day that God will make these truths REAL in that person’s life.

3. Read Matthew 5:1-12 one time each day this week and spend 5 minutes contemplating and meditating on the words. Ask God to reveal the truth of the words to your heart and mind.

4. Ask God to purge you of any self deception or wrong attitudes about sin. Ask God to give you wisdom and understanding (James 1) concerning true, Godly hatred of sin.

5. Ask God to supernaturally impart the joy that comes from God sorrow of sin and the comfort that God gives you when you grieve over sin’s effect on your life.


[1] Some say the Beatitudes apply to the Millennial time because the standards are impossibly high. This cannot be for several reasons: He wasn’t preaching to Millennial people, he was preaching to people sitting in front of him; Believers won’t be persecuted in the Millennium so Matt 5.10 won’t apply; Matt 5.44 would be meaningless… “Love your enemies…”

[2] Remember, this was very scandalous and difficult for both the common people and the Pharisees. The Pharisees had set up an impossibly complex system of laws and rituals, but not so complex that they couldn’t give the appearance of keeping it themselves. So in the eyes of the people (and their own!) the Pharisees were the most righteous on earth. And yet the Lord was saying that you had to be more righteous (in truth they were not righteous at all) than them if you wanted eternal life.

[3] Luke 18:9-14 Also He spoke this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: 10 “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, ‘God, I thank You that I am not like other men—extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I possess.’ 13 And the tax collector, standing afar off, would not so much as raise his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me a sinner!’ 14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

[4] Matthew 12:31 “Therefore I say to you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven men.

[5] 1 Thessalonians 2:12 that you would walk worthy of God who calls you into His own kingdom and glory.

[6] Romans 15:13 Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

[7] 1 Peter 1:3-5 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, 5 who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

[8] Luke 6:20 Then He lifted up His eyes toward His disciples, and said: “Blessed are you poor, For yours is the kingdom of God. This verse is part of Jesus overall teaching and should be interpreted in light of Jesus commandments. No where in Scripture does it specifically state that wealth in and of itself is sinful, nor is poverty somehow innately righteous. It is always a matter of the heart.

[9] Mark 10:25 It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.”

[10] Psalm 27:10 When my father and my mother forsake me, Then the Lord will take care of me.

[11] 1 Thessalonians 5:18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

[12] Psalm 50:10 For every beast of the forest is Mine, And the cattle on a thousand hills.

[13] Romans 8:28-30 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. 29 For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. 30 Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.

[14] 2Samuel 13

[15] Jeremiah 17:9 “The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; Who can know it?

(seriesid:2)