I know I’ve written about the Beatitudes before, but if I’m honest, I don’t think I know enough to ever stop talking about them. The Beatitudes are important, and often overlooked as mystic wisdom, or philosophy. Unfortunately, for many of us, it stops at a cursory glance. But what if it’s a way of life? What if Jesus is giving us everything we need to be content in Him, but we need to look at ourselves deeply through the mirror of Scripture to find it? (Here’s a hint: we do) Yesterday, we considered what it was to be poor in Spirit. I firmly believe every believer, everywhere needs to be this all the time. Let’s consider what comes after this crucial step by examining what Jesus says next: “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.” Blessed. There’s that word again. Consider Jesus’ words right here: we are blessed as we mourn, not when we’re through with our mourning. And it is very possible Jesus is speaking of the things that life throws at our feet: death, loss, broken relationships. Yet, if we consider this in light of what Jesus said before it, the poor in Spirit, we also know that we are blessed when we look at our lives apart from Christ and mourn at what we have done to break God’s heart. …are those who mourn. We are blessed when we realize our great need for God, and mourn who we are without Him. We are blessed when we come to the end of ourselves: that we are depraved, we are rebels against our designer, worthy of death, but God has redeemed us by the life of Christ, who lived a perfect life we could not, and died to pay the penalty we deserve. Consider that. When we come to the end of ourselves, we, in Christ, through rebirth and regeneration, are born again. We mourn the old. We put it to death, and we live now in Christ, and will live with Him for eternity. But first we must mourn and repent. …for they shall be comforted. Consider that comfort is for those who mourn. If someone doesn’t see an issue with their life, if they see no need for God, they will not receive His comfort. And this comfort is not limited to our time on earth now, but also in eternity. The gift of New Life is for right now, but it is a shadow, just as the comfort for our mourning is a shadow of things to come. If we want true comfort, it must not come from within, as the world says, but from God alone. And to get that comfort, we must repent as we mourn the sin that placed Christ on the Cross. Are you comforted? Wonderful. If not, Jesus is waiting, but we must be both poor in spirit, and mourn the sin that brought Him to the cross. Psalm 51
Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin!
For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me. Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight, so that you may be justified in your words and blameless in your judgment. Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me. Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being, and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart.
Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones that you have broken rejoice. Hide your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities. Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from your presence, and take not your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit.
Then I will teach transgressors your ways, and sinners will return to you. Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, O God of my salvation, and my tongue will sing aloud of your righteousness. O Lord, open my lips, and my mouth will declare your praise. For you will not delight in sacrifice, or I would give it; you will not be pleased with a burnt offering. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.
Do good to Zion in your good pleasure; build up the walls of Jerusalem; then will you delight in right sacrifices, in burnt offerings and whole burnt offerings; then bulls will be offered on your altar.