READ Scripture- This is the Word of God
“1 And seeing the multitudes, He went up on a mountain, and when He was seated His disciples came to Him. 2 Then He opened His mouth and taught them, saying…”
Point 1: DiscipleshipA. Well, discipleship is more than just following Jesus because it is the craze.
B. Discipleship involves a submission to teaching. We will read soon – it is a hunger and thirst for righteousness.
C. Here the “disciples” that He begins to teach are not just the twelve that will soon be called Apostles, but all of those multitudes who were following Jesus.
D. There’s a close relationship between preaching/teaching that’s difficult to separate.
Point 2: Mountain
A. The word “mountain” in Matthew's Gospel, and most of the time in the Bible, usually refers to a new revelation that is about to take place.
1. Temptation (4:8)
2. Transfiguration (17:1)
3. Triumphal Entry (21:1)
4. Olivet Discourse (24:3)
5. Great Commission (28:16)
B. Jesus is about to reveal something new about the Kingdom of God.
a. He does so by gathering the disciples, opening His mouth, and teaching.
b. New revelation and a new people group called out from among the multitudes
c. Paul puts it this way in Rom 9:4, we are those “whom He called, not of the Jews only, but also of the Gentiles…” And Paul repeatedly tells Christians that they are “called to be saints” which is “holy ones.” He also says in 2 Tim 1, “…God, who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began, but has now been revealed by the appearing of our Savior Jesus Christ…”
“The essential theme of the whole Bible from beginning to end is that God’s historical purpose is to call out a people for Himself…”
Example 1: Abraham and Sarah
READ Genesis 12:1-5
A. God called Abraham OUT
B. God separated that small group of people unto Himself and promised blessing
C. God called them out of the idolatry in the land of Haran
Example 2: Israel
READ Exodus 3:7-10
A. God called Israel OUT
B. Israel was a small, insignificant nation of slaves that God separated to Himself
C. READ Leviticus 19:1-2 Be Holy for I am Holy
Point 3: The Key to the Sermon on the MountA. This sermon is interpreted in several different ways and can be studied under many circumstances. Yet, there is one, principal key to the sermon that unlocks its meaning.
1. Matt 5:20 “For I say to you, that unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.”
2. Supporting verse from Matt 6:8 “Therefore do not be like them.”
B. God desires a holy people – called out, unique, one of a kind, special, different
If there is any area that the American church has slipped in it is this one. We have lost our identity as God’s holy people, called out by Jesus Christ. Some have called the Sermon on the Mount “radical Christian living.” Where is the radical nature that the Sermon calls for?
Radical Love, Radical Faith, Radical Forgiveness, Radical Obedience
That is Kingdom Living
If there is anything that the younger generations are looking for it is a counter-culture.
They realize that our culture is full of greed, hypocrisy, back-stabbing, and deception among many other things!
Jesus has called us to have a different kind of righteousness; a righteousness that exceeds that of the “religious” people around us. We are told to not be like them. Paul says, “Don’t be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds.” That is kingdom living. That is holy living. That is what we are called to do, truly called to be…”saints.”
If you have failed miserably in this area make a commitment today to be transformed.
If you have felt that you’ve tried hard to be holy, make a recommitment today to let God make you holy through Christ.
If you’ve never accepted Christ – come to Him today. He was different. He was holy. He was/is the sinless God who put on flesh and blood and offered up Himself once for all by being obedient unto death, even death on a cross.
In these next few weeks my prayer is that the Sermon on the Mount will call us out once again to a new revelation, a new hope, and a righteousness that is unlike any other.