This evening we are beginning John Stott’s Beatitudes – Developing Spiritual Character. I’m excited to be back after several weeks away. Please try to work through Stott’s questions before tonight (although if you don’t, please come anyway). As we begin going through the Beatitudes, remember that we are receiving them at the feet of Jesus and not as an academic exercise. Martin Luther says that the Beatitudes are “a delightful, sweet and genial beginning of his sermon. For he does not come, like Moses or a teacher of the law, with alarming and threatening demands; but in the most friendly manner, with enticements and allurements and pleasant promises.” If we read, for example, Deuteronomy 28 we understand the demands of strict legal obedience to words of scripture. Moses tells us to be careful to obey everything. If we obey we become rich and if we disobey we will be cursed and destroyed. The Good News, however, is that the Son of God came into the world, not to condemn the world, but to give it Life. John 3:17. Therefore, be in awe, that as we sit with Christ he overturns the old system based upon the burden of careful and exacting obedience to the rules and whispers to us that a troubled spirit and a broken heart he will not despise but rather he calls blessed.
Dinner is at 6. The menu is chicken cacciatore. Discussion about 6:45. Please bring a friend. Hope to see you here.
Come to me, all who labor and are heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.Matthew 11:28-30