Jul 21, 2008

Words to live by...

The Narrow Way, 7:13-14

"Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.

The Rich Young Man, 19:16-35

Now a man came up to Jesus and asked, "Teacher, what good thing must I do to get eternal life?"

"Why do you ask me about what is good?" Jesus replied. "There is only One who is good. If you want to enter life, obey the commandments."

"Which ones?" the man inquired.

Jesus replied, " 'Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony, honor your father and mother, and 'love your neighbor as yourself."

"All these I have kept," the young man said. "What do I still lack?"

Jesus answered, "If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me."

When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth.

Then Jesus said to his disciples, "I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."

When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished and asked, "Who then can be saved?"

Jesus looked at them and said, "With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible."

Peter answered him, "We have left everything to follow you! What then will there be for us?"

Jesus said to them, "I tell you the truth, at the renewal of all things, when the Son of Man sits on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and many who are last will be first".

Hearers and Doers of the Sayings, 7:24-27

"Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash."

The Answer of a True Prayer, 7:7-11

"Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh, findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone? Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent? "If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him"'

True Loyalty, 6:24

"No man can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one, and love the other, or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon."

Treasures In Heaven, 6:19-21

"Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal, but lay up for yourself treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."

The Lord's Prayer, 6:9-13

"After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you; but if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses."

Seeing and Believing: The Thomas Incident

Now Thomas, called the Twin, one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. The other disciples therefore said to him, “We have seen the Lord.” So he said to them, “Unless I see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.” And after eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus came, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, “Peace to you!” Then He said to Thomas, “Reach your finger here, and look at My hands; and reach your hand here, and put it into My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing.” And Thomas answered and said to Him, “My Lord and my God!” Jesus said to him, “Thomas, because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

Paying Taxes 12:13-1

At that time, the chief priests and scribes sent Jesus some of the Pharisees and some of the Herodians, to entrap him in his talk. And they came and said to him, "Teacher, we know that you are true, and care for no man; for you do not regard the position of men, but truly teach the way of God. Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not? Should we pay them, or should we not?" But knowing their hypocrisy, he said to them, "Why put me to the test? Bring me a coin, and let me look at it." And they brought one. And he said to them, "Whose likeness and inscription is this?" They said to him, "Caesar's." Jesus said to them, "Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's." And they were amazed at him.

1. Blessed is the man who is poor in spirit, that is, one who feels so-the humble one, because humbleness is the gate which leads to the kingdom of heaven.

2. Blessed are the mourners, who long to enter the kingdom of God, but who face many difficulties, such as sin and other impediments which block the way to the kingdom of God. Our merciful God will comfort them.

3. Blessed are the meek, the people who are not disturbed by their own desires, but trust in the Lord (cf. Ps. 37:11, LXX). Their attitude will be rewarded with the inheritance of the earth, which means through their convictions and trust in God they will inherit the age to come.

4. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst after righteousness. They feel the impulse and desire to fulfill the Will of God by their worship of and obedience to God.
Blessed are the merciful not only for giving alms, but especially for giving of themselves in helping others, who in turn obtain mercy (cf. 6:14; 18:33).

5. Blessed are the pure in heart, the upright, the sincere, the honest in every thought and activity (Ps. 24:4). They will feel the abiding companionship of God.

6. Blessed are the peacemakers, between neighbors and between nations, who have a peaceful mind to resolve human discrepancies. They should be the treasurers of divine peace from above in order to provide this peace for others who shall be sons of God.

7. Blessed are those persecuted for righteousness' sake. People who are armed with virtues of the previous beatitudes are well shielded to face persecutions for the establishment of divine principles of life. The kingdom of God is expanded to their hearts.

8. Blessed are ye (my Disciples) who resist evil and undergo persecutions by words and acts for My sake.

9. The blessedness of God is the source of men's rejoicing and gladness not only in themselves but also for the reward in heaven, as it happened to the persecuted prophets (cf 23:20; Lk 11:33-38).

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