Spend some time reading through the major sections of Jesus’ most famous message.
Matthew 5:1-12 Blessed are…
Circle the type of person you most identify with at this point in your life. How can you see this as a “blessed” place to be?
How bright is your light and salty is your salt?
Matthew 5:17-48 A New Moses gives a New Law
As you read these passages you will observe that Jesus takes the Law of Moses, which governs the external behavior, and makes it a matter of the heart.
How does your heart condition match up to Jesus law?
According to v. 48, what is expected of people in the Kingdom of God? How does that make you feel?
Matthew 6:1-7:12 True Religion, True Rewards
In Jesus day (and often in ours as well) people were busy “doing good things” in order to earn favor and status with others. Everyone is fighting to be on top and prove that they are better than the next guy. Everyone is working hard in order to earn rewards in the accolades of men and from God.
In this section, what kind of “action” does God truly reward?
According to vv. 7-11 what do we have to do to receive rewards from God? Why?
According to v. 12, what is the bottom line of God’s desire for His people?
How well are you doing?
Food for thought:
On first glance, the Sermon on the Mount could be very discouraging. You may say, “who could possibly match up to the standard of perfection?” Exactly. No one can. No one, that is, except Jesus. Jesus came to make it possible for us to have access to the Kingdom of God, not earn access to the Kingdom by our actions. Through Jesus we can enter into the Kingdom, and then, through the transforming power of the Holy Spirit in us, we can begin to become the kind of people who actually live a life according to the standards that Jesus laid out in this sermon. You can become a vibrant, holy, loving member of the Kingdom of God! Just ask for it, seek it out, and knock on the door…God is ready and eager to change you from the inside out.