One of my favorite beatitudes (not be-do’s but beatitudes) is the 4th one. In Matthew 5:6, Jesus declares it, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.” I love being satisfied. But, you know what? I will never really understand the 4th until I sincerely understand the first three beatitudes.
The 1st beatitude is one that as proud men we don’t like. “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Here’s the deal. Until we understand that we are destitute and depraved operating out of the flesh, we will never understand how deeply we need Jesus and praise Him for His mercy and grace. Oh, by the way, look what happens when we understand. “Blessed is the poor in spirit…for theirs is the kingdom of God.” It is an oxymoron that in the spirit world we inherit the kingdom by being poor in spirit!
The 2nd beatitude is another one that is not our favorite. “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.” How many of us can’t wait to mourn? Mourning is at the bottom of all our favorite things to do. In the “Lord’s Prayer” we are to pray, “hallow (holy) be your name.” As we live this out, it hurts us when the name of Jesus is not held in great regard and in the awesome character that He deserves. His name daily, a gazillion times a day, in America is being defamed. We should mourn for our precious, holy God, crying out “Holy be Your name.” Also, I believe that some of us stoic Christians need to let go and mourn for some of our loved ones. What is the upside of this? These folks who mourn “shall be comforted.”
The 3rd beatitude is one that we have to surrender control of our will. “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.” Meek comes from a powerful stallion who surrenders himself to his master. This looks like a wussy word. Actually, this is a very powerful word. You surrender to allow our almighty God to take control of our life. What are the benefits? “We will inherit the earth.” In kingdom living, you surrender to truly live and reap the benefits which are awesome.
Let me go back to my original thesis. Until we understand “blessed be the poor in spirit, mourning and meekness,” we will never understand how desperately we need to “hunger and thirst after righteousness.” Right now is a good time for all us to humbly bow before Him poor in spirit, mourning as we see the sinfulness in our lives and the world, and meekly hunger and thirst for His righteousness. You will be satisfied! We gotta understand the 1st three to truly understand the 4th.