PARABLES: A culturally relevant story “cast alongside” a truth in order to illustrate that truth
WHY PARABLES: Spiritual truths requiring spiritual discernment by the Spirit (1 Corinthians 2:12-14)
SERMON ON THE MOUNT -THE BEATITUDES
Matthew 5:3-12 (NLT) 3God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs. 4God blesses those who mourn, for they will be comforted. 5God blesses those who are humble, for they will inherit the whole earth. 6God blesses those who hunger and thirst for justice, for they will be satisfied. 7God blesses those who are merciful, for they will be shown mercy. 8God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God. 9God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God. 10God blesses those who are persecuted for doing right, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs. 11God 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. 12Be 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.
SALT OF THE EARTH
Matthew 5:13 (NLT) You are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it has lost its flavor? Can you make it salty again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless.
Galatians 5:22-24 (ESV) 22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.
LIGHT OF THE WORLD
Matthew 5:14-16 (NLT) 14You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. 15No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. 16In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.
SALT WITHOUT SALTINESS, OR LIGHT WITHOUT SHINING, IS LIKE A DISCIPLE OF JESUS WITHOUT KINGDOM PURPOSE.
WHAT IF YOU’VE LOST PURPOSE?
2 Peter 1:5-8 (NIV) 5For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; 6and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; 7and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. 8For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
A KINGDOM PURPOSE
1 Peter 2:9 (NIV) But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.
John 8:12 (NLT) Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, “I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.”
QUESTIONS TO DISCUSS IN LIFE GROUP OR WITH YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS:
Passages to consider: Matthew 5:1-20
1. What passage or principle from the sermon is God using to strengthen your understanding of who He is and your relationship with Him?
2. Read Matthew 5:1-20. Who is Jesus talking to? What does He want people to understand?
3. What thought process is He challenging with His teaching?
4. What belief or behavior in your life is being challenged?
5. How will you respond to what God is showing you about Himself and you?