I remember the first time I read the Sermon on the Mount. To be more specific it was the Beatitudes (or blessings) found in the first 12 verses of Mathew that stood out to me. I could totally completely understand it. I’ve heard of people who just don’t get it. They don’t understand how on earth anyone could consider the downtrodden blessed.
At the time I was in my late teens and for some time I’d been pretending to be strong, able and not the least bit needy. Somewhere along the dark line I was walking God spoke to me. He offered me peace amidst the turmoil I’d been living with, and brought me to a place in which I could be honest with myself at last. I could admit I was not strong. I could admit my inadequacies and weaknesses.
Not only could I finally admit these things, but I discovered that there was blessing to go with them. I suppose at the time I was comforted to know that there was a future blessing for my afflictions. The meek for instance would one day inherit the earth. The persecuted would one day be rewarded in heaven. Now I see perhaps there is a present blessing.
Blessed are the poor is the beatitude that stands out to me now. The book of Matthew says, “blessed are the poor in spirit,” but in Luke 6 Jesus simply says, “blessed are the poor.” You may ask what current blessing there could be to live in poverty and constant need?
I would ask, what is on the mind of the rich? The rich are not needy. The rich are not hungry. The rich are rarely humble. The great advantage the poor have is that the word “help” is not far from their lips. They cannot afford to be prideful, and tears are common to them. This is an advantage because God is close to the brokenhearted, and without the concept of the word help, there is no use for salvation. Without an understanding for the need to be rescued, we face peril.
We are all broken and in need of fixing regardless of how brilliant or affluent we are. We all need to call out for help from above. For many of us, it’s difficult to lower ourselves to needy thinking, to admit we need help, to admit we are not self sufficient. Opposite of that are the poor, the meek, and the hungry ready to call out to God… for help.