Sunday, February 18, 2007
Blessed are the Poor in Spirit
“3 ¶ Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 5:3
The word “poor” can best be defined by one being “reduced to beggary, begging, asking alms, destitute of wealth, influence, position, honor, as given by in the first two definitions in the Greek Lexicon. The definition can be made broader but I think you get the idea. When someone is said to be poor, they don’t have much, or their lacking. Christ is not talking about someone who is poor in this world’s goods here but poor in spirit. He then says that “theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” What a great promise! So, are you poor?
We Americans are a proud bunch. Admit it! We’re of the “been there, done, that, got the T-shirt” crowd. We’ve got to make sure we get the last word, or at least appear smarter than the next one, up stage or out wit the other guy so we can seem smarter, quicker, or produce the quality that we want to display as having more of. That attitude and spirit carries into the church and into our attitudes and way we approach God. How much do we really think we need him? You say that you’ve taken him as your Savior so are in for life but do you need him now or like the people of the church in Laodicea who said, “I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing?” One may perform a lot of good works, but if our dependency isn’t on God for our help, it is nothing. Jesus said of those in Laodicea, “and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked.” They had no idea of their condition before God and I’m convinced that there are millions who don’t either.
We are dependant upon him in prayer in order to get the spirit of prayer when we pray. We depend upon him in order to gain deeper knowledge of his word as the Apostle Paul said in 1 Corinthians 2:14, “But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.” We are dependant upon him for strength and health for the doctor can only do so much. We are dependant upon him for having a sound mind, “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7
I recently read that, despite the bitter persecution in China, the church is gaining 3,000 believers a day. When they are converted to Christ, I am sure they immediately realize their dependency on him. Does America have to plunge to that level before the church here will understand that?