Blessed

As Jesus saw the crowds gathering, he went up on the mountainside and found a place to sit. His disciples gathered around him, and he began to teach them.

He said: “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 obtain mercy.

“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God.

“Blessed are those who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

“Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and tell  lies about you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because you will have a great reward in heaven. For it was in just the same way that the prophets before you were persecuted.

“You are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it’s lost its savour? Can it be made salty again? No, it’s just thrown out as worthless and trampled underfoot.

“You are the light of the world. A a city built on a hill can’t be hidden. Neither does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket. No, they put it on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before other, so that they may see the good that you do and glorify your Father in heaven.

“Don’t think that I’ve come to abolish the law and the prophets. I’m not here to abolish them, but to fulfil them. I’m telling you the truth – heaven and earth will disappear before the least letter or the smallest item of the law disappears and everything is completed. So anyone who breaks the least of these commands and teaches others to do the same will be called the least in the kingdom of heaven. But whoever obeys these commands and teaches them will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I warn you – unless your righteousness is greater than that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you’ll never enter the kingdom of heaven

“You’ve heard that our ancestors were told: ‘You shall not kill. And anyone who commits murder will be subject to judgment.’ But I tell you, anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment. Anyone who speaks disparagingly to his brother is liable to be brought before the court. And anyone who calls his brother a fool is in danger of the fires of hell.

“Therefore, if you’re presenting a gift at the altar and you remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First of all, go and be reconciled to your brother, then come and offer your gift.

“Settle matters quickly with your adversary when he’s taking you to court. Do it while you’re still on the way, otherwise your adversary will hand you over to the judge, and the judge will hand you over to the jailer, and the jailer will throw you into prison. And, I must warn you, you won’t get out until you’ve paid the last penny of your debt.”

Matthew

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