Power under

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God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him,
for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.
God blesses those who mourn,
for they will be comforted.
God blesses those who are humble,
for they will inherit the whole earth.
God blesses those who hunger and thirst for justice,
for they will be satisfied.
God blesses those who are merciful,
for they will be shown mercy.
God blesses those whose hearts are pure,
for they will see God.
God blesses those who work for peace,
for they will be called the children of God.
God blesses those who are persecuted for doing right,
for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.

God blesses you when people mock you and persecute you and lie about you and say all sorts of evil things against you because you are my followers. Be happy about it! Be very glad! For a great reward awaits you in heaven. And remember, the ancient prophets were persecuted in the same way. Matthew 5:3-12

Okay, there they are, the opening words of Jesus in the first book of the New Testament. What does this say except that we are in for a wild ride. This is not what anyone expected. This is how Jesus wants His followers to behave in the world? This doesn’t have anything to do with the American Dream. It doesn’t have anything to do with success. This is a humble, broken, needy person. This is the last guy to get picked for anyone’s team. “Hey wait a minute, you take Sam; we had him last time.” This is the guy they put in right field and hope the ball never goes out there.

How long were you a Christian before you realized these words were there in Matthew, and you tried to figure out why? How long did you pass over them because you couldn’t?

This is what I mean. This is what is radical about the red letters. Jesus immediately announces a new regime. If Jesus is the king of a kingdom, what kind of kingdom is this? These people are misunderstood, maligned and pushed around, and they apparently don’t do anything about that. They’re being mocked and persecuted and falsely accused and they’re happy about that? Imagine that. I don’t think this was what any of us signed up for. Yet it’s people like this who are first in God’s kingdom, and the prime movers of the world.

This is a radical new way of changing the world by coming under people and lifting them up. This is power under people, not power over them. No one’s ever done this before. It’s understandable that this went right by people. It’s against human nature.

It’s going right by us today. It’s going right by some of you right now. I know because I’ve passed it by many times. Ask God to show you what this means, and how to apply it to your life. Who can you serve today? Who can you come under?

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9 Responses to Power under

  1. Sandie says:

    Don’t pass over all the “little” opportunities to bless and serve , while waiting for the “big” opportunity to do so. That’s just my ego getting in the way. Besides, if we can’t be wise and responsible for the so-called “little” things, why should we expect Him to give us more?

    • Jesus Aguilar says:

      Sandie good morning here I am one more time to thank you for your lead and I am reading the book you so kindly recommended. Love it have a blessed day

      • Sandie says:

        I’m so glad you are enjoying the book; I always wonder when I recommend something. Blessings to you also!

  2. Kevin Krabbenhoft says:

    What if FACEBOOK were LastGuyPicked.com ? What if my boss asked me to stay after my shift for one hour (unpaid-not overtime) and I replied “I can stay 2 hours late !” Can I trust Jesus when I tell my wife how I responded to my boss ?

  3. Mark D Seguin says:

    Luv this: the opening words of Jesus in the first book of the New Testament. What does this say except that we are in for a wild ride. ❤

  4. God has told you what is good.
    And what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, to love kindness,
    And to walk humbly with Him…

  5. Jesus Aguilar says:

    John good morning. I have a question —- Why alter the written words? You must have a reason and I very much will like to hear your answer. Thank you

  6. John A Fagliano says:

    Jesus said these words and then lived (and died) the perfect example of them. He showed us how it can be done. He gave us His Spirit to help us be like him. The trouble with us is that we want the good things but we don’t want to do what is takes to get there. We want to be comforted but we don’t want to morn. We want to inherit the earth but we don’t want to be meek. etc.. The things God can give us are better than anything the world has to offer. People will fight so hard for the things of this world but think it’s too hard to surrender and be blessed by God. The beauty of it all is that all these things Jesus asks of us are possible. The only thing is (as we learned with the 12 steps) we just can’t do them on our own.

  7. Andrew P. says:

    John, have you ever seen Dallas Willard’s “take” on these verses (in “The Divine Conspiracy”)? If not, perhaps you should check it out. If Dallas is right, they don’t mean what we’ve always assumed, and you might (as I do) find his view to be even more powerful (not to mention, less puzzling).

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