We have had a busy couple of weeks and so it is probably right that we have a look this morning at what is happening in the scriptures.
Today, and for the next few days, we find ourselves in Chapter 6 of Luke’s gospel. The text for today gives us Luke’s version of the Beatitudes – which is interestingly prefixed by the note that Jesus came down the mountain to a level place to deliver it, unlike Matthew’s version where Jesus went up the mountain. Now this should not confuse or concern us unduly since the message is more important than the location.
There are other differences. Matthew gives us 8 Beatitudes; Luke only 4. But Luke does not only tell us who will, or are, blessed. He goes on to tell us who should be woeful! In other words, the are positive consequences for doing right but there are also times of reckoning for wrongdoers.
This flies in the face of some modern Christian church teachings that the love of God supersedes any consequences and that everyone who believes in God will be saved. Unfortunately, this is not what Christ teaches us. The parables tell us of horrible things like “wailing and gnashing of teeth” and words like “hypocrite”, “rebuked” and “woe to you”.
Nevertheless, there are more words of hope in the gospels than of doom and gloom. Even in our imperfection, we are reassured that Jesus died so that we may be forgiven. A simple qualification to this is the word “repentance” – salvation comes to those who are sorry for their wrongs and seek forgiveness.
Jesus says, “I have not come to call the righteous to repentance but sinners.”
And we are all sinners – due to our imperfection. Our purpose in life is to become holy – every day; little bits at a time, so that we can rejoice in God’s love and presence for all eternity.
Have an amazing day.
God bless and stay safe. Dc Mike & the team.