Current Preaching Series (10)

Jesus’s Teaching from the Mountainside 

Jan 13, 2019                Matthew 5:1-12        The “blessings” of Jesus’s teaching 

Jan 20, 2019                Matthew 5:13-16 The disciples as salt & light 

Jan 27, 2019                Matthew 5:17-20 Righteousness & the kingdom of heaven 

Feb 3, 2019                 Matthew 5:21-26 Doing away with anger in our hearts 

Feb 10, 2010               Matthew 5:27-32 Doing away with marital unfaithfulness 

Feb 17, 2019               Matthew 5:33-37 Doing away with frivolous words 

Feb 24, 2019               Matthew 5:38-42 Doing away with personal retribution 

Mar 3, 2019                Matthew 5:43-48 Understanding “enemies” & God’s love for all 

Weds, Mar 6, 2019      Matthew 6:1-4 (Ash Wednesday) Not about our righteousness, but the needs of others 

Mar 10, 2019               Matthew 6:5-15 It’s not about personal attention, but God’s will being done 

Mar 17, 2019               Matthew 6:16-18 It’s not about our discomfort, but desire for God 

Mar 24, 2019              Matthew 6:19-24 Having, serving, & treasuring only one, true Master 

Mar 31, 2019               Matthew 6:25-34 Seeking first God’s kingdom & righteousness 

Apr 7, 2019                 Matthew 7:1-6 Judging ourselves before we judge others 

Apr 14, 2019               Matthew 7:7-14 (Palm Sunday) Trusting the Father’s ability to give good gifts 

Thurs, Apr 18, 2019     Matthew 7:15-23 (Maundy Thursday) Not every tree bears good fruit 

Fri, Apr 19, 2019         Matthew 7:24-29 (Good Friday) Putting these words into practice


Nine Easy Steps to a Happy Life! (wink wink)

Matthew 5:1-12

The secret to happiness is not as simple or universal as it is sometimes spoken about. 

Everyone has heard proverbial wisdom about what will make for “the happy life,” but most—if not all—of us (including those who give the proverbial wisdom) never actually attain or maintain that happiness.  And what if happiness is not what we think it is?  What would God describe to us, his creatures, as true happiness?

In the Gospel of Matthew, there is a large unit of teaching from Jesus traditionally called “the sermon on the mount.”  It is three full chapters of material (Matt 5-7) where Jesus interacts with his disciples on Mosaic torah, ethics, and the kingdom of heaven.  And, interestingly enough, it begins (5:1-12) with what we call the Beatitudes—statements about “blessing” or “happiness.”

According to Jesus, happiness is not defined by the patterns we see in this world. 

In the world, it is riches, joyful experiences, power, and abundance that lead to “the happy life.”  But, from God’s perspective, Jesus suggests the secret to “bliss” is actually found in spiritual poverty, mourning, meekness, hungering and thirsting, purity, and persecution.  It isn’t so much that his followers should seek these things out or purposely make themselves miserable, but they should recognize that, if they suffer for the things dear to God’s heart and are dissatisfied with the status quo, there is hope.  God is working toward something better.  There will be happiness and bliss for those who continue to live in accordance with God’s character.

So, if you want “the happy life” now, you most certainly will be disappointed.  But, if you continue to follow the way of Jesus, even through all its struggles, you will find it leads you to more than you could ever have hoped for.

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