Jesus on the Mountain

Matthew 5:11
Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.
Matthew 5:1-12 is where you find Jesus teaching a crowd gathered on a mountainside. We call this section of the New Testament, the Beatitudes. His teaching on that mountain continues into chapter 7 and covers several topics.

Many kinds of people were on the mountain with Jesus that day. I imagine most of them were listening to find where they fit in the descriptions of those who were blessed. Jesus listed various categories of people (poor in spirit, those who mourn, the meek, peacemakers, etc) and gave a specific reward for them to look forward to. I think that crowd listened as we do today. “Am I going to be comforted?” “Am I going to be shown mercy?” “Am I going to see God?”

However, I also think they had a hard time with verse 11 which tells of being blessed because of insults and persecution. I have a hard time with that. I understand it, but it takes some adjusting. The people who are being lied about because of their relationship with Jesus probably don’t feel all that blessed. Insults aren’t fun. But Jesus wasn’t talking about the temporary feelings of this world. He was taking a long-term look at the kind of person who would endure the persecution and not fall away from him. He loves it when people don’t fall away.

That person is blessed.

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