Reflection on Scripture Fourth Sunday Ordinary Gospel A Way to lasting happiness

By 10:54 AM

Fourth Sunday Ordinary Gospel A

When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain, and after he had sat down, his disciples came to him.
· Matthew lists nine “beatitudes”; Luke only includes four.

He began to teach them, saying: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
· Luke says: "Blessed are you who are poor, for the kingdom of God is yours” What is the difference between the two statements?  The “poor in spirit” includes anyone who totally depend upon the Lord for their sustenance, whether they have or do not have. Luke seems to focus on the materially disposed.

 Blessed are they who mourn, for they will be comforted. 
· Luke states: “Blessed are you who are now weeping, for you will laugh.” What is the difference between the two statements?
· The mourning Matthew is referring to is not physical sadness but sadness over the effects of sin in one’s life and in the world. They are blessed because such mourning leads to repentance and return to the Lord.

Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the land. 
· Jesus said that he was meek and humble of heart and that we are to learn to imitate him.  Meekness is not weakness but an attitude of humility instead of pride or self-righteousness. Meekness sees oneself as one is before God.

Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied.
· Luke states: “Blessed are you who are now hungry, for you will be satisfied.” Luke talks about a physical hunger, while Matthew, a spiritual hunger for God’s will. “Righteousness” is another word for the will of God.

Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. 
· Another way of saying this is—the measure by which you measure to others will be the measure that will be used by which you will be measured or treated.
· If we wish God to be merciful to us, then we need to be merciful to others.

Blessed are the clean of heart, for they will see God. 
· Another way of saying this is “pure of heart” or “single hearted.”  To be clean of heart is have God as one’s focus and to choose to remain at one with God.

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. 
· These are the ones who seek to reconcile people, who seek unity rather than division among people. It is not peace at all cost. But it is the willingness to pay the cost of lasting peace, which includes forgives and healing.

Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
· We can be persecuted for a variety of reasons. Here the reason for the blessedness is that the person is persecuted because they are following the will of God.

Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of evil against you falsely because of me.
· Luke states: “Blessed are you when people hate you, and when they exclude and insult you, and denounce your name as evil on account of the Son of Man.”
· The reason for the persecution in both statements is their relationship with and commitment to Jesus.

Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven.”
· Make personal each beatitude and see how many reflect your life.
· What response do you want to make as a result of your reflections?

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