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The Beatitudes (Part 3): Blessed are they that Mourn

The Four Gospels   •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  29:32
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Psalm 50:19–21 ESV
“You give your mouth free rein for evil, and your tongue frames deceit. You sit and speak against your brother; you slander your own mother’s son. These things you have done, and I have been silent; you thought that I was one like yourself. But now I rebuke you and lay the charge before you.


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Matthew 5:1–12 ESV
Seeing the crowds, he went up on the mountain, and when he sat down, his disciples came to him. And he opened his mouth and taught them, saying: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth. “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied. “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy. “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. “Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.



Called to be Holy
Poor in spirit
Not self righteous
convinced of their spirirtual poverty
Acceptance of being unworthy and powerless

Blessed are those who mourn

Matthew 5:4 ESV
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Assurance of God’s Unmerited Favour (Assurance of Grace)
Are those who mourn
Do we have a right to happiness when there is so much suffering?
Romans 5:3–8 ESV
Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us. For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
2 Corinthians 4:17–18 ESV
For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

Natural Mourning

The world views the happiness is the absense of difficulties
The Beatitudes for Today A Right to Happiness?

happy are the prosperous, the successful, those for whom the sky is always blue and who seem to know nothing of the problems and burdens, pressures, heartaches and tears with which those less fortunate are sadly familiar

Pleasure is the world’s priority
The Beatitudes for Today A Right to Happiness?

Entertainment is king and the amount of time, energy, money and enthusiasm spent on it is testimony to the fact

The world shuns anyone unhappy
The Beatitudes for Today A Right to Happiness?

Don Carson comments: ‘The world does not like mourners; mourners are wet blankets.’

Jesus warning:
Luke 6:25 ESV
“Woe to you who are full now, for you shall be hungry. “Woe to you who laugh now, for you shall mourn and weep.
Matthew 5:4 ESV
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Mourn “Pentheo” - desolation felt when someone mourns the death of a loved one (strongest word in Greek)
Inability to function

Sinful Mourning

Cain - Consequence Mourning - entiresly self centred
Genesis 4:13–14 ESV
Cain said to the Lord, “My punishment is greater than I can bear. Behold, you have driven me today away from the ground, and from your face I shall be hidden. I shall be a fugitive and a wanderer on the earth, and whoever finds me will kill me.”
Judas Iscariot
Matthew 27:3–5 ESV
Then when Judas, his betrayer, saw that Jesus was condemned, he changed his mind and brought back the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and the elders, saying, “I have sinned by betraying innocent blood.” They said, “What is that to us? See to it yourself.” And throwing down the pieces of silver into the temple, he departed, and he went and hanged himself.
“I have sinned” and made restitution
motivated by fear - not repentance
The Beatitudes for Today Mourning and Mourning

J C Ryle underlines the warning it contains: ‘It is possible for a man to feel his sins, and be sorry for them, to be under strong convictions of guilt, and express deep remorse, to be pricked in conscience, and exhibit much distress of mind, and yet, for all this, not repent with his heart. Present danger, or the fear of death, may account for all his feelings, and the Holy Ghost may have done no work whatever in his soul.’

Questions we must ask ourselves:
Am I sure that my sorrow for sin is genuine?
Am I grieved at my sin and not just at its consequences?
Has my sorrow led me to heartfelt repentance?
Have I humbly turned to God for forgiveness and cleansing?

Spiritual Mourning

Mourning that leads to assurance
Godly grief:
2 Corinthians 7:10 ESV
For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death.
Different from “Poor in Spirit”

To be ‘poor in spirit’ is to be convicted of one’s sin, whereas to ‘mourn’ is to be contrite for it

Remorse - deep regret or guilt
To repent means to rearrange your entire way of thinking, feeling and being in order to forsake that which is wrong.
Denying onself and being comitted to a new path
Example: Joseph & Bothers
Initially no true repentance
Benjamin - held responsible for crime and brother allows to go home
Brought about true repenance from the brothers
Judah offers himself for his Brother
To be truely crushed

Only those who have been humbled, wounded and broken under the crushing burden of their sin can ever know God’s saving grace

Psalm 34:18 ESV
The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.
True Repentance Described:

David Brainerd, a pioneer missionary to the North American Indians who died in 1747 at the age of 29. His journal, in which he wrote page after page of his terrible conviction of sin before he was converted, has become a missionary classic. One extract reads as follows: ‘One night I remember in particular, when I was walking solitarily abroad, I had opened to me such a view of my sin that I feared the ground would cleave asunder under my feet, and become my grave, and send my soul quick to hell before I could get home. Though I was forced to go to bed, lest my distress should be discovered by others, which I much feared, yet I scarcely dared sleep at all, for I thought it would be a great wonder if I should be out of hell in the morning.’

A lack of true repentance in the modern church:

American preacher A W Tozer ring tragically true: ‘In the majority of our meetings there is scarcely a trace of reverent thought, no recognition of the unity of the body, little sense of the divine presence, no moment of stillness, no wonder, no holy fear … The whole Christian family stands desperately in need of a restoration of penitence, humility and tears.’

True convictions:

True conviction of sin leads to true repentance and faith, and the joy of release from the guilt and grip of sin

Isaiah describes the true experience:
Isaiah 61:1–3 ESV
The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the poor; he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn; to grant to those who mourn in Zion— to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit; that they may be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he may be glorified.
Matthew 5:4 ESV
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
A People Characterised by Spirirtual Mourning
Not a perpetual smiling face!
The Beatitudes for Today The Grief of the Godly

John Stott rightly observes, ‘Some Christians seem to imagine that, especially if they are filled with the Spirit, they must wear a perpetual grin on their face and be continually boisterous and bubbly. How unbiblical can one become?’

Sadly people lack the awareness of their sin and fail to have humility before God and awareness of their unmerited Grace from God.
Peter after denying Jesus 3 times:
Matthew 26:75 ESV
And Peter remembered the saying of Jesus, “Before the rooster crows, you will deny me three times.” And he went out and wept bitterly.
Paul being brutally honest about sin as a mature Christian:
Many get deeply concerned of the Sin of the Pastor when in public prayer he has expresses such a clear awareness of sin.
The Beatitudes for Today The Grief of the Godly

‘For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do … I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature … For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do … I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature … For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing … What a wretched man I am!’ (Romans 7:15,18,19,24)

Issac Watts wrote:
The Beatitudes for Today The Grief of the Godly

Lord I am vile, conceived in sin;

And born unholy and unclean;

Sprung from the man whose guilty fall

Corrupts the race and taints us all

Sin is Rebellion against God
The Beatitudes for Today The Grief of the Godly

Sin is high treason against the majesty of our Maker, open rebellion against his rightful authority

Mourning for Sin is not self centred but God Centred
Gods Pleasure at Repentance
The Beatitudes for Today The Grief of the Godly

the nineteenth-century American scholar W S Plummer wrote, ‘No man can prove that God is better pleased with innocence in an angel than he is with penitence in a sinner.’

Joel 2:13 ESV
and rend your hearts and not your garments.” Return to the Lord your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love; and he relents over disaster.
1 John 1:9 ESV
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
The problem in the modern church
Christians have rejected the authority of scripture
The Beatitudes for Today Blemishes in the Body

one professor who told his students that the Bible ‘had no more authority than a daily newspaper …’ Mysticism is rampant; professing Christians are often more interested in angels and demons than in the person and work of Christ. Public worship is increasingly being geared to the worshippers rather than to the One being worshipped. Biblical ethics are compromised or abolished. In some charismatic circles epidemic hysteria is masquerading as a mighty work of the Holy Spirit. In others, miraculous healing is being promised on a ‘name it and claim it’ basis. Rodney Howard-Browne, prime mover in the so-called ‘Toronto Blessing’ movement which burst on the church scene in the nineteen-nineties, cheerfully announces himself as a bartender for the Holy Spirit. Pseudo-prophets dispense pseudo-prophecy with scant regard to biblical criteria. In some circles, entertainment evangelism has become the norm, and at times is carried to the point of absurdity; on one visit to the United States I was given a leaflet advertising the services of ‘Skipper, the Gospel Monkey’. Serious literature is being neglected; many Christian bookshops are almost a contradiction in terms, with a heavy emphasis on music, games, trinkets and ‘Jesus junk’. Moral standards are crumbling, while dishonesty, immorality, greed, pride, sharp practice and self-serving are often tolerated, even among local church leaders, without any semblance of biblical discipline.

Arrogence from the modern believer - Corinth
1 Corinthians 5:2 ESV
And you are arrogant! Ought you not rather to mourn? Let him who has done this be removed from among you.
2 Corinthians 12:21 ESV
I fear that when I come again my God may humble me before you, and I may have to mourn over many of those who sinned earlier and have not repented of the impurity, sexual immorality, and sensuality that they have practiced.
God requires humility
Acts 20:19 ESV
serving the Lord with all humility and with tears and with trials that happened to me through the plots of the Jews;
Acts 20:31 ESV
Therefore be alert, remembering that for three years I did not cease night or day to admonish every one with tears.
Sadness at arrogant sinners
Philippians 3:18–19 ESV
For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things.

Grief over a Sinful world

God’s Dealing with failure to mourn
Ezekiel 9:4 ESV
And the Lord said to him, “Pass through the city, through Jerusalem, and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and groan over all the abominations that are committed in it.”
Ezekiel 9:6 ESV
Kill old men outright, young men and maidens, little children and women, but touch no one on whom is the mark. And begin at my sanctuary.” So they began with the elders who were before the house.
Event entertainment embrasses mans sinful nature
Why aren’t we mourning?
The Beatitudes for Today Satan on the Loose

seventeenth-century Scottish preacher David Dickson wrote, ‘Two things in sin chiefly move the godly to mourn for it. One is the dishonour it brings on God. The other is the perdition it brings on the sinner.

Perdition - eternal judgement

For they shall be comforted

Matthew 5:4 ESV
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Comforted: “parakaleo” to “Call to ones side”
Strengthened by outside resources
The Father
God gives endurance and encouragement
Romans 15:5 ESV
May the God of endurance and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus,
The Son
Advocate - speaks in our defence
1 John 2:1–2 ESV
My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.
Do not consider law courts - play down weakness and use strengths to try and pursuade
We have no merits
We are guilty, depraved, corrupt, helpless and hopeless
Jesus prenents Himself, as the attoning sacrifice
The Holy Spririt
Sprirt of Truth
John 14:16–17 ESV
And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you.
The Beatitudes for Today The Christian’s Comfort

nineteenth-century American preacher C R Vaughan expresses something of what this means: ‘He is there to impart holiness, to give grace according to the day, to bestow wisdom, patience and courage, to sanctify and comfort in affliction, to erase the image of Satan, to impress the image of God, to conquer the unholy passions, and to fill the soul with all the fruits of the Spirit.’

Word of God
Romans 15:4 ESV
For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.
Faithful Preaching of the Word of God
1 Corinthians 14:3 ESV
On the other hand, the one who prophesies speaks to people for their upbuilding and encouragement and consolation.
Fellowship of Christians
Philemon 7 ESV
For I have derived much joy and comfort from your love, my brother, because the hearts of the saints have been refreshed through you.
1 Thessalonians 5:11 ESV
Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.
Romans 1:12 ESV
that is, that we may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith, both yours and mine.
Certainty of Christ’s Return
1 Thessalonians 4:18 ESV
Therefore encourage one another with these words.
1 John 3:2 ESV
Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.
Ephesians 5:27 ESV
so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish.
Habakkuk 2:14 ESV
For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord as the waters cover the sea.
Revelation 21:3–4 ESV
And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
This life is characterised by Mourning
Heaven is characterised by the absense of mourning

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