The Beatitudes and then I ramble

For my next few weeks of Scripture Memory Team, I’ve decided to learn The Beatitudes. I’m going to split them up and learn a few at a time for the next few weeks.

My favorite version of the Bible (well, the one I use the most) is NIV. But lately I am really loving The Message. When I first heard it several years ago, I wasn’t crazy about it. But Lots of Scotts uses The Message in a lot of her references and I find it very refreshing and honest. I think I should put that on my book list. Unfortunately, I doubt I’ll find one at Goodwill. Maybe a birthday present?

Yesterday, I downloaded a Bible app on my iPhone, and it’s easy to flip back and forth between verses. So, here are The Beatitudes in NIV and then from The Message.

Matthew 5:3-12

3. Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
4. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
5. Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.
6. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
7. Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
8. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.
9. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God.
10. Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
11. Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. 12. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

3. You’re blessed when you’re at the end of your rope. With less of you there is more of God and his rule.
4. You’re blessed when you feel you’ve lost what is most dear to you. Only then can you be embraced by the One most dear to you.
5. You’re blessed when you’re content with just who you are- no more, no less. That’s the moment you find yourselves proud owners of everything that can’t be bought.
6. You’re blessed when you’ve worked up a good appetite for God. He’s food and drink in the best meal you’ll ever eat.
7. You’re blessed when you care. At the moment of being ‘carefull,’ you find yourselves cared for.
8. You’re blessed when you get your inside world- your mind and heart- put right. Then you can see God in the outside world.
9. You’re blessed when you can show people how to cooperate instead of compete or fight. That’s when you discover who you really are, and your place in God’s family.
10. You’re blessed when your commitment to God provokes persecution. The persecution drives you even deeper into God’s kingdom.
11. Not only that- count yourselves blessed every time people put you down or throw you out or speak lies about you to discredit me. What it means is that the truth is too close for comfort and they are uncomfortable. 12. You can be glad when that happens- give a cheer, even!- for though they don’t like it, I do! And all heaven applauds. And know that you are in good company. My prophets and witnesses have always gotten into this kind of trouble.

I particularly like what it says in verse 11. “What it means is that the truth is TOO CLOSE FOR COMFORT and they are UNCOMFORTABLE.” Wow! I’m not going to lie. I’m a big fan of being uncomfortable. Jesus wanted us to be uncomfortable. Because it is then, when change occurs, especially in the church.

One of the books that is in my stack to read is Radical by David Platt. (I have to throw this in there- he has TWO undergrad degrees from Georgia! Go Dawgs!!) I heard about it and thought it sounded interesting. And then I watched a video about it and it made me squirm in my seat. (It’s on the homepage of the website.) And that’s when I knew I had to read it. And right now, it’s sitting on my floor because, yes, I’m scared of what it’s going to do to me.

Don’t worry. Once I finally read it, you’ll hear all about it!

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