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A Study, Sermon On The Mount #4

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Sermon On The Mount

             A Study Of The Sermon On The Mount #4

                         By, James L. Thornton

We have come to the last portion of The Sermon On The Mount recorded in Matthew 5, 6, 7. Jesus has held His audience spellbound for a long time but He still has a great deal of advice for those who listened that day as well as the millions of people who in years to come would read and use His words for their daily life-style. In this section of The Sermon On The Mount Jesus is still emphasizing the narrow way and the strait gate which everyone who enters His kingdom must follow.

It would have been late in the day when Jesus concluded this sermon. The audience had been there a long time and they were impressed with this new prophet. And at the conclusion of the sermon we note the reaction of the people who heard these words for the first time. Every sermon has some kind of reaction from the audience. Some will say, ‘it was too long,’ others will say, ‘it was eloquent delivery,’ some will say, ‘very good advice,’ while others will hang onto the words and make them a part of their life.

I am glad that Matthew, who I feel like was in the crowd that day, was of the latter group, and not only adhered to, but kept the words in his heart until he found a time to record them for our benefit. I still say it is the Grandest Sermon Ever Preached. There are still several subjects which this last Section #4 covers so stay with us.

1. Introduction
2. God Or Mannon
3. Choosing A Master
4. Judge Not
5. We All Face The Judgement
6. Eye Surgery
7. Seeking And Finding
8. The Golden Rule
9. The Strait Gate And The Narrow Way
10. False Prophets
11. Two Men And Two Houses
12. Conclusion, The Reaction Of The Hearer


1. Introduction:

There is a problem which every Christian will face; the Bible calls it, “The World.” Paul’s sad refrain in
2 Timothy 4:10 “For Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world,..”

The “world” has many allures, many attractions and many disciples are pulled back by its force.
1 John 2:15 “Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world.” Paul says, “Set your affections (love) on things above…” (Colossians 3:2).

The “world” which Jesus referred to here is not the physical universe. It is the system of which Satan is the head. The fallen angels and demons are his emissaries and the unsaved of the human race are his subjects.

All this together with its purpose, pursuits, pleasures, practices and places where God is not wanted “Make up the World.” Much of this ‘world’s system’ is religious, cultured, refined and intellectual but it is “Anti God and Anti Christ,” God versus the world.

We must recognize the vast difference between the “World” and “God’s Way.” There is a choice every man must make between them. You cannot refuse to choose. Men cannot live without consciously or unconsciously having to choose something to which they give their devotion. They may offer their Devotion to God, the Devil, the World, Mammon, the State, a Political party, a Job, Home, and Family. But life requires decision and the Christian life demands decision. However, decisions once made must be constantly reaffirmed.

Joshua urged the people to make their decision. Joshua 24:15 “And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.”

Our Lord frequently emphasizes that it is not an easy thing to be a Christian. (“Strive to enter.”)  He himself when He was here in this world was tempted of the Devil. He was confronted by the power and subtlety of the world. Sometimes when He was alone and at other times when He was going about in the world.

We prepare ourselves in the secrecy of our prayer closet, fasting, Bible study, and doing good deeds. But we have to live our life in the world. That “World” will do its best to get you down. It will do its utmost to ruin your spiritual life. So you have to be very wary. It is a fight of faith and you need the whole Armor of God. If you have not got it, you will be defeated. “We wrestle not against flesh and blood.” It is a stern battle, it is a mighty conflict.

In the first part of Matthew 6 Jesus give us advice on,
Matthew 6:1:1-4 ---- Alms- Giving
Matthew 6:5- 15 ----- Prayer
Matthew 6:16 –18 Fasting

Beginning with verse 19 Jesus gives detailed instructions of how we are to live our life in this world, while involved in its affairs, feeling its cares, its strains, and its stresses. In Luke 19:13 Jesus says Occupy till I come.” Go about your daily tasks.

 2. God Or Mammon

In this lesson we want to consider several things Jesus mentions in the last part of Matthew 6:19.
1. Treasures on earth and treasures in heaven
2. Moth, and rust, and thief.
3. God or Mammon
4. The heart and the treasure
5. Sin’s foul bondage.
6. Little Faith
7. Increasing Faith
8. Worry—its causes and its cure.

Matthew 6:19. “Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:
20. But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
21. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.”

In these next few verses Jesus is talking about where our treasures (things we hold most valuable) are located. He also talks about anxiety, care, worry, and fear. According to our Lord one can be as dangerous to our souls as the other. Many may feel secure as we turn our attention to these verses and they will say it does not speak to them, because they think Jesus was addressing this portion of His Sermon to the rich. And only to those who hold great material possessions.

But I feel that this to was addressed to all of us, rich or poor in material possessions.
Jesus says “Lay not up for yourselves treasures.”……. The word “Treasures” which Jesus used means far more than money. It is anything which we value most of all. “Number one” That which we spend most of our time and energy for. YourTreasure is what you live for, your home, wife, children, job, automobile or sports. It’s what you get your main or even total satisfaction in this life from. Jesus is telling us let it not be from things that belong to this world only.

We have all heard the old saying “You cannot take it with you.” This maybe true but Jesus is saying that we can send it on in advance. Earthly treasure is laid up only as Heavenly Treasure is laid down.

The opposite is also true for Heavenly Treasures can be acquired only as the earthly
is renounced.Treasures upon Earth Not love of money only, but love of honor, love of position, status and love of one’s work illegitimately. Whatever it may be anything that stops with this life and this world.

The Treasures on the Earth are always beset by risks and ends in total loss.
“Where Moth and Rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal;”
Moth and rust, such little things, but Jesus emphasize the peril that lurks in little things.

Jesus says very little against startling and sudden collapse of the soul. It may be because there is no such thing as a sudden collapse of the soul. Calamity and collapses in a period of our life amid fierce temptation is always preceded by a hidden process of deterioration.

Moth works so slowly and quietly and they take such small bites. You may not even notice the small holes which are beginning to appear in your garments. But when you wear it the stress and strain will cause gaping holes to form and the sleeves fall out.  

Why? Because moths have weakened the fibers which make up the garment. Most of us know what termites are and the costly damage which they do. The termites which sometimes appear on the window still crawling or flying around have already done their damage. They work while you sleep, eating up the floor joists, taking out the rafters, chewing on the paneling and under-mining the foundation.

Sin is sometimes such a small thing, of slight importance, but if let alone will gain control of the whole life. Consumes moral strength, will-power is sapped and desire for religion is utterly destroyed.

Rust usually starts with a small spot which has been neglected and exposed to the atmosphere. Rust is slow oxidation or slow deterioration. Have we become a bit rusty in our prayer life?

3. Choosing A Master:

Matthew 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.”

Notice the words Either” “The one” “Or else” “The other.” There is no middle ground—each makes a total demand upon a person.No man can..”

There are three types of servants.
1. The common servant or slave—usually a person who had been captured in battle. They were usually a person of another nation, a person who was an outsider. They became personal property and could be bought and sold at the master’s will.

Common servants or slaves could be treated like an animal if the master so desired—they had no mediator. They could never hope to own anything of their own, wife, children, houses or land. An example of Satan and man.

2. The second type of servant is one who serves because of a debt he owes. Under the law if a person owed a debt which He could not pay the creditor could take the husband or some member of the family into his service in payment of the debt. An Israelite could not make a common servant or slave of another Israelite.

3. The third type of servant is one who because of love for another, serves him with devotion. The servant becomes devoted to his master because of a kind act or deed this person has done for them.

Deuteronomy 15:16. And it shall be, if he say unto thee, I will not go away from thee; because he loveth thee and thine house, because he is well with thee;
17. “Then thou shalt take an aul, and thrust it through his ear unto the door, and he shall be thy servant for ever…….”  We choose to serve Jesus because we love Him.

4. Judge Not:

Matthew 7:1. “Judge not, that ye be not judged.
2. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.”

We have now come to the last major section of The Sermon On The Mount. The underlying theme of this section is that we are ever moving towards a final judgment. The final assessment of our life—and the determination of our final and eternal desyiny.

Jesus is telling us that we even set the standard of our own judgment. People are being judged by their own yardstick and their own measure. If we are harsh and critical in our judgment of others—we can expect the same to be applied to us.

This is something of which we constantly need to be reminded. Half of our troubles are due to the fact that we live on the assumption that this is the only life and the only world. But day by day, hour by hour, we are walking in the presence of God. His eye is always upon us—and the final thing that matters is not what men think of us, but what God thinks of us. One day we will stand before His throne in judgment. And that thought should determine and control our life.

In this section of The Sermon On The Mount  our Lord takes great pains to show us here that we need to be reminded of it in detail. We are undergoing a process of judgment the whole time preparing us for the final judgment—remember we must give an account.

Once more I am reminded of the greatness of this sermon—it searches us out in all our hiding-places and brings us out into the light of God. It finds us somehow, somewhere.

It is without question the greatest sermon ever preached—and I might add, the most impossible to live. That’s why our Lord started with the Beatitudes, and ends with the story of two men and two houses. Our Lord knew that the root of all our sins was in the heart.

So once again our Lord goes for the heart. “Judge not,…” “Don’t judge….” Now I want to know exactly what our Lord means by this. I don’t want to be confused—and I don’t want you to be confused.

The way to answer this is not to seek a dictionary. We are living in an age when definitions are at a discount—everybody has got one. The age dislikes Theology and hates doctrine and dogma. (What the Church stands for and what it holds to be true and fundamental)

It is an age characterized by a love of ease and compromise. “Laodicea.” It is an age of appeasement. It is an age that dislikes “Strong Men” because they cause disturbance. It dislikes a man who knows what he believes and really believes it. They have no time for the ‘Old Time Preacher Man.’

Sam Jones: May 1885 in Nashville, Tennessee He preached “I am preaching my conviction and have no compromise to make. 1886, He preached Quit Your Meanness.” A man built him a Church, which was the tallest building in Nashville. It later would become the Ryman Auditorium, home of country music, it is still there.

Samuel W. Small preached, “Deliverance from Bondage.”

Today’s Society wants a man who is in ‘the Middle of the Road’ and not extreme one way or another. They say, “you do not have to take a stand on a particular Doctrine or Principles.” They seek ease and peace “after all Jesus says ‘Judge Not.’

Does this mean that the Christian man should never express an opinion about others? That we all must be one? “After all what is needed today is unity and fellowship. Should a Pastor of the Church use any judgment upon whom he uses in the service.

Matthew 7:6. “Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, …….”
15. Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
16. Ye shall know them by their fruits.

Now if we have no standard or doctrine how would we be able to exercise discrimination? How can we test the fruit and avoid the false? Now our Lord was not saying for us not to look and listen and compare the Fruit of Men. Fruit = Life and Doctrine. So I feel that Judgment is to be exercised in the realm of the Church.

The Church has the right to judge and discipline its own. The Pastor has the right to sit down and silence those who are not living or teaching according to the Church Doctrine and standards. We should ever be grateful to a Pastor who will discipline and chasten with compassion. But I feel like I should warn you of the terrible danger of condemning, of pronouncing judgment in a final sense.

The following was written from Ephesus –A.D. 57
1 Corinthians 5:1.  It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father's wife.
2. And ye are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he that hath done this deed might be taken away from among you.
3. For I verily, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, concerning him that hath so done this deed,
4. In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when ye are gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ,
5. To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.
6. Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump?

Paul gave them instruction, this person must be disciplined, he must be silenced, he has no part with you, he must be made to feel the shame of his deed. Satan will wrestle for the right to destroy him, and take him to hell. Having written this Letter in Ephesus Paul came into Macedonia. Here he met Titus returning from Corinth and learned from him how his letter had been received. (2 Corinthian 2:4) They followed the Apostle’s admonition is disciplining and excommunicating the offender.

Possible a year had passed and Paul writes again.
2 Corinthians 2:6. “Sufficient to such a man is this punishment, which was inflicted of many.
7. So that contrariwise ye ought rather to forgive him, and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one should be swallowed up with overmuch sorrow.
8. Wherefore I beseech you that ye would confirm your love toward him.” Paul is saying “You need to reach out to that person and try to get him back into your fellowship.”

What Jesus is warning us in this passage not to fall into the ‘Spirit of
Self-Righteousness or The Spirit of Superiority or The Spirit of Condemnation.

Luke 18:11. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican.

But this attitude is not confined to the Pharisees. This attitude has constantly troubled the Church. It is still with us today. How guilty we all are at sometime or other. This spirit has a tendency to despise others, to regard them with contempt like Goliath to David.

This spirit leads to criticism and becomes one who enjoys criticism. This is the person who expects to find fault, indeed almost hoping to find something however small it may be. A ‘Mote’ The person is always on the lookout for something and he delights when he finds it.

This spirit hopes for the worst and gets a malicious malign satisfaction in finding faults and blemishes. Small matters become matters of vital importance. In Romans chapter 14, Paul tells the Romans at great length to avoid judging one another in matters like food and drink, and one day above another.

Some had been condemning their brother in these ‘Non-Essential Matters.’
Romans 14:17. For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.

If we ever know the feeling of being rather pleased when we hear something unpleasant about another that is the wrong spirit. If we are jealous, or envious, of someone then hear that he or she has made a mistake and we feel a sense of pleasure within us that is the wrong spirit.

That is the condition which leads to this spirit of judgment. Now let us look at it in practice or working in us.

1. This spirit is always ready to pass judgment when the matter is of no concern to   
     us at all. How much of our time do we spend expressing our opinion about people
     who have no direct dealings with us? 1 Timothy 5:13. “……….. but tattlers also   
     and busybodies, speaking things which they ought not.

2. Another way this spirit works is to habitually express our opinion without a
    knowledge of all the facts. We have no right to pronounce judgment without knowing both sides of
    the story. Search out the facts, know the whole truth of the
 matter before forming an opinion. Do not
    condemn on hearsay.

3.  Another thing this spirit never takes the trouble to understand the circumstances Why did they
     stumble? Never ready to excuse, it is never ready to exercise
mercy, Judgment without Mercy.
     Please listen to see if there is an explanation, if
there is an excuse. Weigh all the circumstances
     before passing verdict.

4.  Finally this spirit really manifests itself in the tendency to pronounce final judgment upon
      people. This is something which belongs to God alone.
      Luke 9:52-56. Tells us the Lord sent messengers into a village of the Samaritans
      to make ready for His arrival.

 The Samaritans would not receive Him. James and John were outraged and had a mind to commit an
 outrageous act against them.

  Luke 9:54. And when his disciples James and John saw this, they said, Lord, wilt thou that we command fire to come down from heaven, and consume them, even as Elias did?
55. But he turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of.
56. For the Son of man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them……..”

The moment we condemn and dismiss the person we are assuming a power that belongs to God alone and to no one else So far we have looked at only two words “Judge Not….”  We have not yet considered the reason which He adds. Before we judge others let us remember that, “
Romans 5:8. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

Not one of us stands in his own righteousness. But we stand in the righteousness of Christ. Without Him we are lost utterly lost. We condemn ourselves by judging others.

Love is the Key
1 John 3:14. We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death.

5. We All Face The Judgment:

Matthew 7:1. Judge not, that ye be not judged.
2. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.

Now we have come to the next 5 words. First of all there is a Judgment which is final and eternal. That is the Judgment which determines a man’s status, or standing before God—the great separation between the Christian and the non-Christian, between the sheep and the goats, those who are going to glory and those going to perdition. This is taught everywhere in the Bible.

Ecclesiastes 12:13. “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.
14. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.”

Daniel 7:9. “I beheld till the thrones were cast down, and the Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of his head like the pure wool: his throne was like the fiery flame, and his wheels as burning fire.
10. A fiery stream issued and came forth from before him: thousand thousands ministered unto him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him: the judgment was set, and the books were opened.”

This same scene is echoed in Revelation 20:11-15, called the “Great White Throne Judgment.” Can we escape this awful, dreadful event? I wish I could assure you that you could escape. Thousands upon thousands of preachers are trying to find a way to escape the Final Judgment, but Paul was convinced that even he would be in the this dreadful event. Notice in the following scriptures he used the personal pronouns ‘we’ and ‘us’ in his description of it, indicating he expected to be there.

Romans 14:10. “But why dost thou judge thy brother? or why dost thou set at nought thy brother? for we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ.
11. For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.
12. So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.”

2 Corinthians 5:10. “ For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.
11. Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men;”

Revelation 6:17. “For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?”

In these scriptures Paul speaks of “the wrath of God,” and “the terror of the Lord,” and he also tells of a way to escape those terrible things. We may not escape from standing in the Judgment but if we are ready for the Judgment, having our robes washed in the Blood of The Lamb, we shall stand there un-condemned.

1 Corinthians 1:5. “So that ye come behind in no gift; waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ:  (God is still working on us)
8. Who shall also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

If we are guilty of sin or wrong living—we are likely to be punished by Him, sometimes in the form of sickness, James 5:15, and other means. God simply with-holds His protection of us. Some have even died,
1 Corinthians 11:29 “For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body.
30. For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep (have died).

We cannot trip through life lightly, we must walk warily and circumspectly (watchful in all circumstances), “not as fools.” We must judge ourselves, correct our own faults, and mistakes before we get to the Judgment. If we do not want to be condemned with the world we must be careful now.

1 John 2:28. “And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.”
1 John 4:17. “Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.”

“Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye meet, it shall be measured to you again.”

Jesus is telling us to be very careful in our judgment of other people, for it we are critical in our judgment of them, we will face the same critical judgment when we come before The Great White Throne Judgment.

6. Eye Surgery:

Matthew 7:3. “And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?
4. Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?
5. Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.

We need to remind ourselves that this was spoken to believers in their dealing with other believers. This was a brother’s eye that they are concerned with. Why is it that many good people are often censorious and harsh in their judgment of others?

Our Lord, in this passage sternly calls such ‘hypocrites.’ He himself, in all His purity and goodness, was ever tender and gentle and compassionate towards the fallen and the tempted.

He told His impetuous Disciples that the tares must remain with the wheat till Judgment Day. They are not to be rooted out by human hands for only God knows the difference. The mote and the beam, or “Eye Surgery,” is one of the most delicate of all operations.

It requires a gentle and skilled hand of the Surgeon and he must have absolute knowledge of the eye and all its intricate complicated parts, organs and vessels. The surgeon must be able to see clearly because one little slip and the patient could be left blind. So let us beware the next time we attempt to perform eye surgery on a brother or sister.

The first requisite for a judge is personal integrity and righteousness. His own hands must be clean.  Read Romans 2:1-11 and you will find that judging is inexcusable. Our Lord is teaching us that the third reason for our not judging others is, that we are incapable of judgment, we cannot do it.

Jesus is saying that our Spirit is such that we are not entitled to judge. Many times our real desire is to condemn the person, rather than to get rid of the evil that is in them. He is saying that our own ‘spirit’ is so bad that we are incapable of helping others.

Matthew 7:4. Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?

We appear to be very concerned about these people and their faults. We want to give the impression that we are concerned only about their good. We say we are troubled about this little blemish that is in them. We are anxious to get rid of this mote. But our Lord says, you cannot do it because it is such a delicate process. This beam that is in your own eye makes you incapable of doing so. You cannot be a help to another while you are blinded by the beam in your own eye.

Matthew 7:5. Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye. 

Let us look at this again first we have found this little blemish, this mote, as Jesus calls it. We pretend we are very interested in helping them get rid of it. Jesus says the hypocrisy of it is when in reality we are glad we found it.

But our Lord is saying, if you really want to help other people, if you are genuine and true in this matter, there are certain things you have to do yourself first.
Matthew 7:5…..” first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.

Remember the subject of this entire passage is that of judging one another. Judging which leads to criticism and condemning another person. This spirit of judging, this spirit of criticism and this whole attitude is wrong, very wrong.

Jesus is telling us that there is no more terrible form of sin than this judging spirit of which some are guilty. It is like a beam. This other person has fallen into some sin of the flesh, guilty of some error but that is nothing but a little mote in the eye, when compared with this spirit of judging which is like a beam.

Start with your own spirit. We must face ourselves with honesty and sincerity and admit to you the truth about yourself. We must examine our attitude towards other people. We need to take the statements we make about another person and sit down and analyze them. We should ask ourselves what we really mean.

If we would only judge ourselves and our attitude towards others, we would be well on the way towards removing the beam from our own eye.    
Matthew 7:5…..” first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.

It is very difficult to remove a ‘mote’ from an eye, we have all experienced it. The very moment the finger touches it, it closes up, because it is so delicate. What you need above everything else in dealing with it is sympathy, patience, calmness and coolness. This is all required because of the delicacy of the process.

Now we want to think of this in the spiritual realm. You are going to handle a soul. You are going to touch the most sensitive thing in a man. How can we get the little mote out?

To handle a soul we must be humble. You should be sympathetic, that is to feel sorrow for them. Above all we must always be conscious of our own human weakness, short comings, faults, failures, sins and our own unworthiness. So that when we find it in another, far from condemning, we should feel like weeping.

Never approach them with condemnatory feelings and remarks. You must be full of compassion, sympathy and be considerate of their feelings. You must also be sensitive to their pain, be kind, humble, gentle and understanding. “Look I have just pulled this beam from my eye so I know how you feel.”

Galatians 6:1. “Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.” 

Ye which have cast out the beam from your own eye, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness, sensitive, considerate, kind, gentle, humble, understanding, considering thyself lest thou also be tempted.”

Paul says in,
Ephesians 4:15. “But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:
32. And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.”

There are people and I thank God for them, who can speak the truth in love.  When they have spoken it to you, you not only know they are speaking the truth but you thank them for it.

There are other people who tell you the same truth but in such a manner as to lead you to defend yourself at once and hate them for doing so because they have not spoken the truth in love.

Matthew 7:1. “Judge not, that ye be not judged.”
Then suddenly He says,
Matthew 7:6. Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.

The authorized King James Bible makes this a new paragraph of its own but I feel that this is the conclusion of the first paragraph of which Jesus speaks of judging our brother.

This at first glance, would seem to contradict what our Lord has just said about judging. But in the first lesson on this section you will remember we spent an entire hour explaining that the Church has a right to set standards and doctrine. It also has the right to admonish and discipline any who fail to keep these ordinances.

Even so far as to discriminate against false brethren. If the Church did not have that right it would not be long before it would be absorbed or assimilated with all the false doctrine. There are many today who show a lack of discrimination and are ready to praise and recommend anything which vaguely claims the name Christian. They say that we must not judge. Then how can we test the Spirit? But what Jesus has said is that we are not to set ourselves up as final judge in condemning people.

The Pearl of great price is the Christian Message, the Message of the Kingdom of God. The Dog in Palestine was not the domestic pet to which we are accustomed to but a half-wild animal.  A sort of scavenger, the swine in the Jewish mind stood for all that was unclean and unholy.   


Matthew 7:7. “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:
8. For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
9. Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?
10. Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?
11. 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?”
12. Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.”

Jesus is preparing us to meet life’s uncertainties. I cannot imagine a better, more cheering, or a more comforting statement with which to face all the uncertainties of our life that what we have just read. This is one of the great and precious promises which are found in the Bible.
7. “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:”

In order that we might be quite certain about it, our Lord repeats it, and puts it in even stronger form. 8. “For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.”

There is no doubt about it, it is certain; it is an absolute promise. And what is more, it is a promise made by the Son of God Himself speaking with all the fullness and authority of the Father.

Life is like a journey, a journey full of perplexities, problems, and uncertainties.
But what our Lord is trying to teach us is that what really matters in life is not so much the various things that come to meet us. Not so much with what we have to deal with, as our readiness to meet it, that’s what really matters. Our whole life can be summed up in one man, Abraham. “He went out, not knowing whither he went.” (Hebrews 11:8) But he knew with whom he went.

He was not alone, there was one with him who had told him that he would “never leave him nor forsake him.” Although he knew not the events, and the problems which would arise, He was perfectly happy, because he knew his traveling companion.  And every once in a while he got a glimpse of “Him who is invisible” (Hebrews 11:27).

Our Lord Jesus Himself who, under the shadow of the Cross, and knowing that even His most trusted Disciples were suddenly going to leave Him and forsake Him in fear and concern for their own lives.

Listen to what He says in
John 16:32.  Behold, the hour cometh, yea, is now come, that ye shall be scattered, every man to his own, and shall leave me alone: and yet I am not alone, because the Father is with me.

That is the one thing that matters. Our Lord does not promise to change life for us. He does not promise to remove all difficulties and trials and problems and tribulations. He does not say that He is going to cut out all the thorns and leave the roses with their perfume. No, He helps us to face life realistically and tells us that these are things to which the flesh is heir and they are bound to come our way. But He assures us that we can so know Him that, whatever happens, we need never be afraid, we need never be alarmed.

He put all that in this great and broad promise.
Matthew 7:7. Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:
8. For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.

Then without pausing to catch His breath, He continues
9. Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?
10. Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?
11. 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?

Fifteen Times Jesus said this and so to receive the full meaning of this passage we must of necessity read it all. For in it Jesus continues to use the Father relationship. This may help us to understand why we do not get everything that we ask for.

Many times that which we call a lack of faith may well be from another reason. I’m sure we all have asked God for something which He did not do for us. Something we wanted very much at the time. We believed it was what we needed. But now we look back upon those things which God did not grant us and we are grateful. Has He ever shut one door in your face only to open another which turned out to be far better for us? It’s this Father relationship.

Our natural Father never gave me everything I asked for, did he? I remember one time I asked for a switch-blade knife, which I did not get. I was about 8 years old, and thought I was capable of handling one. He was much wiser than I, and judged my needs accordingly.

He never carried me every time I asked him to. If he had always carried me I would never have developed strong feet and legs. So I thank God that this is not a universal promise and that God is not going to grant me my every desire and request. God has a better way for us.

Paul had this ‘thorn in the flesh’ and he besought the Lord thrice that it might depart from him.
2 Corinthians 12:8. For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.
9. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

God simply had another way. Let us never fail to ask and let God do that which is best for us.
James 4:2. ….. “ye have not, because ye ask not.”      
3. “Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss,…..”

The thing our Lord is wanting to emphasized in this paragraph when He tells us.
Matthew 7:7. Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:
8. For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
9. Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?
10. Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?
11. 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?

We are to show persistence, perseverance, importunity, in our prayer life.
In the clearing stands a boxer. A fighter by his trade, he carries a reminder of every blow that laid him down or cut him till he cried out in his anger and his shame. I am leaving, I am leaving!” But the fighter still remains.

Our tendency to quit before we finish, a partly mowed lawn, a half read book, letters never completed, a diet abandoned and a car upon blocks. Did he ever want to quit? “It is finished:” What is finished? Are you close to quitting, please don’t do it.

I have fought a good fight. “The fighter remained.”
1. We realize we have a need.
2. The realization of the supply.
3. The persistence in seeking after it.

Then God, as our Heavenly Father, never makes a mistake. He knows the difference between good and evil in a way no earthly Father could ever know. The earthly father sometimes at best makes mistakes. He truly knows how to give that which is best for us. He truly knows how to to give good gifts to us as His children.

Matthew 7:11. 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?

8. The Golden Rule:

Matthew 7:12.  “Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.”

First I must say that this verse obviously does not stand alone. The word ‘therefore’ shows clearly that it marks the conclusion of a chain of reasoning beginning all the way back to the first verse of Matthew 7.

Let us look back briefly upon some of the things which Jesus says should cause us to “Do unto others as we would have them do unto us.”
First, “Judge Not,”
Then two reasons why,
1. “That ye be not judged,”
2. “For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged.”

You set the standard whereby you will be judged, then some wanting to pull the mote out of a brother’s eye, when they themselves have a beam in their own eye.

Then Jesus says, “Ask and it shall be given you; seek and ye shall find; knock and it shall be opened unto you:”

Then the illustration of a father giving good gifts unto their children, and God, so much more of a loving disposition, giving and wanting to give the best of everything to His children.

“Therefore” because God so loves you and does the best for you—you should do the best for others. “Therefore” because God treats you fairly, you should treat everyone else fairly and justly. “Therefore” because you don’t want other people judging you harshly, severely, unsparingly, without regard to feeling, then don’t be judging them.

 “Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even do to them: for this is the law and the prophets.”

 “Therefore” all that you expect or desire of others do ye also to them. Treat them, in all circumstances, like you want to be treated.

We could call this, “The First Rule Of Christian Conduct.” It is known as, The Golden Rule.” This rule applies to our conduct with ‘all men,’ not merely to ‘brethren,’ ‘friends,’ ‘neighbors,’ ‘fellow Christians,’ ‘fellow-citizens,’ but to ‘strangers,’ ‘disagreeable people,’ ‘foreigners,’ ‘Gentiles,’ ‘heathen’ ‘savage races,’ or any others we have dealings with.

In the world of Jesus’ day the thinking was, ‘an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth'—do to others before they get the chance to do it to you. If you are strong take advantage of the weak. It was a cruel world—and the cruelest of times that the world has ever known. Cruel rulers sat with unlimited power that with the wave of the hand sent men and women to cruel deaths. It was a time when men showed no mercy, no love, no remorse, and no heart—into this world Jesus was born. God came down.

Jesus came to change men’s way of thinking about other people. At a time when unwanted babies were just thrown away with no voice of protest raised or any sense of cruelty stirred in a single heart. At a time when 3/4 of the world’s population was held in abject slavery and not even counted as human beings.

Jesus came at a time when there was a complete lack of fellow-feeling toward strangers and the needy. Jesus came at a time when men, women and children faced wild beasts in the arena for the sport of those who attended the games and at a time when captives were thrown in to a den of lions or a fiery furnace. God’s creation groaned, waiting to be delivered from her torment and Jesus came, not only to give His life as a ransom, but to bring a message of deliverance, a message of hope, of mercy, of love and compassion. This message was to do more to change the world than all the laws which were enacted by all the governments of the earth.

This message was not engraved in stone or on parchment with pen and ink. “But with the Spirit of the Living God; …. in the fleshly tables of the heart.”   
2 Corinthians 3:3. Forasmuch as ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart.

Jesus sent men forth to change the world, change their way of thinking towards one another.
Matthew 7:12. Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.

It has been called The Golden Rule. It calls for activity in doing good. Not merely are we to refrain from doing to our neighbor what we should not like him to do to us, but we are to go further and to do him all the good which we want him to do to us. 

Paul said in,
Romans 12:21. Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.
Galatians 6:10. As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.

The Golden Rule, there are almost no depths to which Human Nature may sink where it is not enlightened and restrained by this rule.
Paul says in,
2 Corinthians 5:14. “For the love of Christ constraineth us; …….”
17. Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
20. “Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, ……”

Christ has sent you into the world to show the world what He is like. “If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them.” (John 13:17)

Jesus had confidence in these little seeds He sowed. He knew they would spring up and grow in the hearts of those who heard them. It started in the early Church. In the Book of Acts they sold their possessions and gave it to the cause of Christ.

Acts 2:44. And all that believed were together, and had all things common;
45. And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.

This bond of unity and love and compassion grew in the Early Church. The world took note of it.
Acts 11:26. “,,,,,,,,,,,,, “And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.”  (Christ – Like)
It quickly spread through out the known world. Nothing affected the feelings of men towards their fellow-men as this one verse which Jesus left us.

President Hoover speaking to a conference of Young Men’s Christian Association,
said “because of human weakness The Golden Rule may have its daily violations, but this great principle, aimed at common good, penetrates and profoundly modifies all the forces in the modern world in which we live.”

This rule has restrained men’s selfishness and given him a sense of brotherhood. It has tamed the savage that dwells in all of us. It has taught us gentleness. It has caused the strong to be considerate of the weak. How happy the entire world would be if only it could learn to live by The Golden Rule.

In the home there can be no real true happiness where The Golden Rule is not obeyed. In all our social life, or job, our recreational activities or whatever we should always order our life by its standard. 

9. The Strait Gate And The Narrow Way:

Matthew 7:13. “Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:
14. Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.”

For all practical purposes our Lord has finished His sermon with Matthew 7:12. His object, or purpose, is to bring His followers to the realization of what it means to be a Christian. Then He emphasizes how they are to manifest that nature and character in their daily life.

Our Lord has come into the midst of the kingdoms of this world, and His purpose is to call out a people unto Himself from the world and to form them into a kingdom—The Kingdom Of Heaven. This kingdom is entirely different from any other and the laws that are exercised in this kingdom are entirely new.

Our Lord has given them a portrait of the Christian in the Beatitudes and then says that because they are that kind of person, the world will dislike them and persecute them. Nevertheless they are not to isolate nor segregate themselves from the world. But they are to remain in society as salt and as light.

Jesus says they are to become the best and most righteous people the world has ever known, even above the Pharisees. He gives them detailed instructions as to how to do their almsgiving, how to pray, how to fast and how to treat one another.

Now do we just stand back and admire this marvelous Sermon? Do we say that it has the grandest conception of life and living that mankind has ever known? Such exalted morality such wonderful uplift that is the ideal life that all ought to live.

Is that our reaction? Just to praise The Sermon on the Mount? If it is, He might as well never have preached it. It is not praise He desires, it is practice. The Sermon on the Mount is not just to be commended, it is to be lived.

Jesus says “Enter Ye ….” (Matthew 7:13) This is like an altar call, it is an invitation. Not an invitation to be a spectator or an onlooker. Jesus meant for you to be a participator in this, it is a call to action. You must make a start.

Of all the world’s major religions, Christianity is the only one you are not born into, you must be reborn. If your Mother and Daddy were Hindu, you are born a Hindu. You may be a tolerably good Hindu, or an intolerably bad one, but you will be a Hindu and no one will question your religion. The same is true of those who are born intro a Buddhist family.

You cannot be a Christian because you are born in a Christian land or in a Christian family. It is a matter of your own choice, a matter of a personal covenant between yourself and God.

I believe it was Browning who saidHow very hard it is to be a Christian.” It is indeed, the strictest and most exacting of all great religions. We enter alone as He bids us come. Jesus speaks not to us in the mass but to us one by one. He speaks within the deep and hidden places of our spirit. “Enter ‘Ye’ in at the strait gate.”

Jesus made no effort to keep back the truth that to follow Him and to be one of His in this world might bring the extreme of pain and hardship. His Gospel will test and try a man to the utmost.

Jesus’ Disciples said the following.
John 6:60. Many therefore of his disciples, when they had heard this, said, This is an hard saying; who can hear it?
Matthew 19:25. When his disciples heard it, they were exceedingly amazed, saying, Who then can be saved?

Almost Jesus’ first announcement to the world was.
Matthew 7:14. Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there
be that find it.

All throughout Jesus’ ministry He returned to this same theme as if He were afraid that people might be deceived, and lest they forget that “without holiness no man can see the Lord.”

To a man who wanted to follow Him He said,
Matthew 16:24. “……..If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
Matthew 10:38. And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.

Once when a crowd of people were eager to follow Him from impulse, Our Lord counseled them to go home and sit down and count the cost.
Luke 14:25. And there went great multitudes with him: and he turned, and said unto them,
26. If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.
27. And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple.
28. For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it?
29. Lest haply, after he hath laid the foundation, and is not able to finish it, all that behold it begin to mock him,
30. Saying, This man began to build, and was not able to finish.
31. Or what king, going to make war against another king, sitteth not down first, and consulteth whether he be able with ten thousand to meet him that cometh against him with twenty thousand?
32. Or else, while the other is yet a great way off, he sendeth an ambassage, and desireth conditions of peace.
33. So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple.

We cannot enter the gate without a high seriousness of mind and a steadfast resolve and purpose. We enter at an hour when there is a complete surrender of will. The soul that passes in through the ‘strait gate’ finds the way which leadeth to life. So Jesus, to begin with, calls our attention to the ‘narrowness’ of the gate.

It is a ‘narrow life;’ it is a ‘narrow way.’ The gate is ‘narrow;’ and we must also walk along a ‘narrow way.’ It is ‘narrow’ or ‘strait’ at the beginning and immediately it is ‘narrow.’ Jesus does not try to persuade us that it is something very easy and then later on discover it is hard.

There are certain things which must be left outside behind us. There is no room for them; you cannot get them through the gate. The first thing we leave behind is worldiness. We leave behind the crowd, the way of the world. The world, the crowd is on another way which is much wider.

Matthew 7:13. … “Wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction and many there be which go in thereat:
14. Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.”

You must make a break with the world, with the crowd, and with the vast majority of people. The Christian way of life is not a popular way. It has never been popular, on the other hand, crowding through the wide gate and traveling along the broad way is what everybody else seems to be doing.

You deliberately get out of that crowd and make a break from them. Start making your way towards this strait and narrow gate alone. The second thing we most leave behind is the way of the world. We leave behind its habits, customs, and the things which please the world. They cannot go there is no room for those things.

The Third thing we most leave behind is our ‘self’.
Matthew 16:24. …….“If any man will come after me, let him deny himself,”…..

This is our greatest stumbling block when it comes to following Jesus, its one thing to leave the world and another thing to leave the way of the world. But to leave self, now isn’t that asking a bit too much?

Jeremiah 6:16. “Thus saith the LORD, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.”

Isaiah 35:8. “And an highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called The way of holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it; but it shall be for those: the wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err therein.” 

Now just what am I talking about? I’m talking about that old nature which you were born with. Self is the Adam man, the fallen nature.

Paul say in,
Colossians 3:9. Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds;
Romans 6:6. Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.

So at the entrance to this Strait Gate there is a sign which saysLeave yourself outside.” Now our Lord is making His appeal to those who heard it or to those who read it to make a break with the crowd and begin a life with Him.

We might just say it is an Altar Call, “Enter Ye In…”  ‘Make a start’ “Follow this life which I have delivered to you.” “Enter ye in at the strait gate…….,”

Jesus also knew that not many would respond to His invitation to meet Him on the other side of the gate. There must have been an element of sadness as He concluded with the words: “….. Few there be that find it.”

We talked about some of the things which will not go through the ‘Strait’ and Narrow Gate,
1. The world,
2. The way of the world,
3. Self or the old man of sin must die and be buried.

We might call it the stripping process or “The Law of Reduced Interest” We have already studied where Jesus said in Matthew 6:24. …..”Ye cannot serve God and mammon.”

Many feel tied down, restricted, cannot do this and cannot do that. Some pray for the day when they may be released from the confines of the Narrow Way. “Lord can’t I be a Christian and still have these ideas, habits and friends.” No! You must lay down everything to enter the gate. He will open up a new abundant life for you. Some of you may have been in the Service of Uncle Sam, Army, Navy, Air-Force or Marines. You may remember the day you left the farm, factory or school. You left caring a suitcase with your personal belongings. Some of you left on the bus or train. No doubt there were family and friends to see you off, many crying.

All through that trip you journeyed alone, ‘O’ there were many people on the bus or train, but in reality you were alone. You had been stripped of your family and friends. Your interest in the farm, factory or school had been reduced to Uncle Sam’s call to service.

Someone was waiting for the bus or train to take charge of your life for the next four years or longer. Once you were signed up and sworn in, you were their property. First, they put you in line and took your suitcase with all your shaving articles.

The extra clothing was in the suitcase which was put back on the bus and sent back home. There you were standing stripped of everything you called your own. Next they took your hair; I mean you were their property. Then you were told to join another line. There you received shoes, socks, underwear, clothes, blankets and a bag to keep them in.

They said, “You don’t have to worry about anything anymore. If you have to travel, we’ll take care of you. If you become sick, that is our responsibility.” From then on your I.D. Card was your supply line.

Now I hope you understand this stripping procedure, then the supply. It’s that way when we come to the Lord. We are no longer our own you are bought with a price. Uncle Sam taught you many things. How to dress yourself and how to keep yourself clean.

You learned discipline, how to take orders, how to be obedient to those in command. Through their food program you began to put on weight. Some through their exercise program you began to lose weight. After six to eight weeks of basic training you were pronounced a Soldier.

First, The stripping, the putting off, the laying down, that is the ‘Strait Gate.’ Then the supplying of all our needs

Matthew 6:33. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

Now let’s talk about this Law of Reduced Interest. Many times when we think about Heaven we think in terms of a far away place –‘Future Tense.’ But Jesus did not talk in terms of a far away place but something we can start to enjoy now.

John the Baptist said in Matthew 3:2. …… “Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
Jesus said in Luke 16:16. …… “the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it.”

If you want to understand more about the Kingdom of Heaven just read all those great Parables which Jesus gave in Matthew chapter 13.
The Kingdom of Heaven
1.  A Sower went forth to sow.
3. A Man who sowed good seed.
4. A Grain of mustard seed.
5. Like unto Leaven.
6. A Treasure hid in a field.
7.  A Merchant man seeking goodly pearls.
8. A Net cast into the sea.

What is the Kingdom of Heaven, God and the Holy Ghost. It is a little bit of the Glory World come down to earth for us to enjoy now. Jesus did not intend for you to die before you start to enjoy Heaven. So He is really interested in getting Heaven in us, The Kingdom of God is here.

Paul says in Ephesians 1:13. “In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,
14. Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.”

“The Earnest of our inheritance….” The Holy Spirit is God’s part payment in the salvation of those who believe. Guaranteeing the full delivery of all that He has promised

Salvation is in three parts:
1. Justification, is the removal of the guilt and penalty of sin and giving of a
     righteous nature. ‘The New Birth”
2. Sanctification, is the progressive work of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer.
    In which Jesus eliminates sin and produces His own fruit by the work of the Holy Spirit
3. Glorification, is the act of transforming the present bodies into perfect, sinless,
    and deathless bodies.

 We have already experienced the first two, Justification and Sanctification. The  Holy Spirit is this guarantee until “The Redemption of the Purchased Possession.”

The final redemption of this possession is Glorification when the physical body will be changed. The Soul and Spirit are now enjoying The Kingdom of Heaven on earth. The body will experience Glorification at the Sounding of the Trumpet when the First Resurrection takes place.

Just thinking about all this is enough to make you lose interest in this world.
Reduce all your earthly interest to this.
Matthew 6:33. “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” 

10. False Prophets:

 Matthew 7:15. “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are
 ravening wolves.
16. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?
17. Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.
18. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.
19. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
20. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.”

This Gospel Of The Kingdom was not entrusted to any nation or government to preach or teach. Neither was it to be proclaimed by angels. For none but the blood washed, blood bought, souls could adequately describe it. Paul says, “We have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us” (2 Corinthians 4:7).

Our Lord in Matthew 7:13-14. has given an invitation to enter in at the strait gate and walk the narrow way because it leads to life. He also knew that standing just outside that strait gate would be false prophets. They are always there, that is their favorite place to stand.

Beware of them, our Lord warns us. If you start listening to them you are entirely turned around. They will persuade you not to enter in at the strait gate and not to walk in the narrow way. They may have the appearance of sheep; they may resemble a sheep, but be careful because they don’t have the nature of a sheep.

Matthew 7:15. Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

Our Lord knew that this would be the greatest hindrance to those who would like to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven. It would not be the ‘Straightness’ of the Gate, or the Narrowness of the Way which would turn people away.

People love a challenge and people are attracted to Christianity by the challenge it offers. He wants you to come near to Him and spend time with Him.

Matthew 7:13. Enter ye in at the strait gate:   
Matthew 7:14. Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

Jesus is asking for total commitment. Let us think for a moment on the man to whom we are indebted for leaving us the message which Jesus spoke on that day. (Matthew the Publican) No greater challenge was ever offered to and accepted by, the man who heard and recorded for us the Sermon on the Mount, Matthew, the son of Alphaeus. (Mark 2:14)

He simply refers to himself as Matthew (gift of God) the Publican (Matthew 10:3)
His name given to him at birth by his parents was taken from the Old Testament History –
‘Levi’ (Luke 5:27). Indicating they had high ambitions for him.

When men go looking for souls do they shun this kind? These would never ‘enter the strait gate. We can learn a valuable lesson here. Jesus said “I came not to call the righteous to repentance but sinners.” I am persuaded that there are ‘Jewels’ out there in the most unlikely places, and unlikely professions.

Somewhere along the way Matthew became disillusioned with the religion of his people. Doubtless he was the heartbreak of his parents when he ‘sold his soul’ and became a hated ‘tax collector’ which was sinner above all.

This would make Matthew wealthy, powerful and above all immune to the scorn, the cutting remarks and the rejection of his fellow Jews. He had built his own fellowship of friends. Most of them Publicans or sinners like himself. He was well educated and able to speak and write in many languages.

But in reality Matthew had been dead for a long while because honor had been sold, and conscience had been all but stifled. He was also an observer of men and their words and actions.

One day a new Prophet moved to town (Matthew 4:13). The next 12 verses tell the story of the things which Matthew saw, heard and felt. Miracles took place and Matthew saw 4 men whom he had collected taxes from give up their fishing business to follow this Prophet (Jesus). He saw something different about this Prophet; He did not throw stones or sticks at the lepers but would actually lay His hands upon them and heal them.

This Prophet did not shun the poor beggars, sinners, harlots, or even the Publicans. Matthew listened every chance he had. That is how he came to, no doubt be one of those standing or sitting on the Mount that day when Jesus spoke this great Sermon.
Matthew 5:8. “Blessed are the pure in heart:”
Matthew 5:10. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake:

Maybe Jesus looked right at Matthew when He said ….”Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” Anyway Matthew took it down either in his mind or on parchment, but most of all in his heart. It would be months (Matthew 9:9) before Jesus would stop by his booth where he was collecting customs. Jesus simply said “Follow Me.”

Matthew was a man who had everything, wealth, power, a lavish way of life. He had far more in the way of earthly things to give up than any of the Apostles. What could Jesus offer to him? He had offered hardships, and an indigent way of life. How would He make a living? How would he support his family? What would people think now? He’s really gone crazy.

It also brought abut the reuniting of a family. His mother stood at the foot of the cross. (Mary the wife of Cleopas)
John 19:25. Now there stood by the cross of Jesus his mother, and his mother's sister, Mary the wife of Cleopas, and Mary Magdalene.   
Matthew’s father was most probably one of the two disciples on the road to Ameaus.
Luke 24:18. And the one of them, whose name was Cleopas, answering said unto him, Art thou only a stranger in Jerusalem, and hast not known the things which are come to pass there in these days?
Matthew’s brother ‘James the Less’ was a Disciple and an Apostle

I think Luke says it best concerning Matthew.
Luke 5:28. And he left all, rose up, and followed him.

No the ‘Strait Gate’ and the ‘Narrow way’ are not the greatest hindrances to men following Jesus. There was a victory that day not only for Matthew but to every poor sinner who hears these words, “Follow Me.”

Persecution was and is not the greatest hindrance. Jesus did not say, beware of persecution but He simply said,
Matthew 5:10. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

One by one many would make the supreme sacrifice by giving their lives. Beginning with Stephen in,
Acts 7:58. And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man's feet, whose name was Saul.
59. And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.
60. And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.

James the brother of John would be next who was killed by Herod with a sword.
Acts 12:1. Now about that time Herod the king stretched forth his hands to vex certain of the church.
2. And he killed James the brother of John with the sword.

Great persecution was brought against the Church.
Acts 8:4. Therefore they that were scattered abroad went every where preaching the word.

Untold millions would join Stephen and James under the altar in,
Revelation 6:9. “And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held:”

God has a much larger Church in the ground than living in the world today. Does He really need us to make up His Bride? No, it would not be the straightness of the gate or the narrowness, nor would it be persecution or tribulation. The greatest hindrance and the greatest deterrent to Life Eternal is ‘False Prophets’ and ‘False Teachers.’ Beware of false prophets,..”

The Old Testament prophets knew they would come—they warned us—Jesus knew they would come—He warned us. Paul knew they would come—he warned us. Peter spoke of them—so did all the writers of scriptures.

Jude (brother of our Lord) 1:3. “Beloved when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful of foe me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the Saints.”

I want to emphasize to you how very important it is for us to get started right in our walk with the Lord. It is the voice of the false Prophet that says that all roads lead to Heaven. The voice that says it really does not matter what you believe as long as you are sincere.

But remember Jesus said in
Matthew 7:13. “Enter ye in at the strait gate: …..” 
14. “Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life.....”

What Jesus was saying in verses 13 & 14 is that there are only two roads, not many roads. One the strait and narrow leads to life the other a broad way encompassing all other ways leads to destruction.

It becomes so very important to know, which is the right way, the difference is life and death Heaven or Hell. Jesus tells us that these false Prophets come in sheep’s clothing.
Jude 1:4. For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.
Peter also says in
2 Peter 2:1. But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.
2. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.

Paul called them “False brethren,”
Galatians 2:4. And that because of false brethren unawares brought in, who came in privily to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage.

These followed Paul every where he went trying to undermine the Gospel. Paul recognized these false brethren and rebuked and exposed them before all the people. Paul realized the danger these false Teachers posed to the Church and had some strong statements against them.

Paul is distressed that they have so quickly turned from him and his gospel.
Galatians 1:6. I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel:
7. Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.
8. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.
9. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

The early Church faced two principal False Doctrines. The first sprang from Judaism which was aimed primarily at the Jewish converts. They urged the Jewish converts to return to the Levitical ritual of the Temple and to keep from certain meat and practice circumcision.

Jesus knew that there would be hindrances to people entering into life. He knew Satan would turn men aside. Satan would use every means to foil or stop the Saving Grace of God.
2 Corinthians 11:13. For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.
14. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.

The Epistle to the Hebrews was prompted by these False Prophets. The second false teaching was aimed at the Gentile converts. It was the attempt to substitute good works for Faith in Christ and the New Birth Experience. This was met by the Book of Romans and the Book of Galatians. We find that the Apostles met these False Prophets head on and gave no room for them.

Letters or Epistles were written of which Paul was the greatest contributor, which set forth certain doctrines and principles as being from the Lord. Warnings were given to the people to not deviate from those doctrines and principles.

Remember Jude said to “earnestly contend for the faith once delivered…” One translation reads, To carry on a vigorous defense of the revelation which was once and for all delivered to the saints.

We may pride ourselves that our Faith, our Church, our Denomination is the one which is truly and wholly Christian. Never was there a more deceptive pride than that. You may be shocked at discovering that there is a dreadful force that is secretly at work in our own Church.

Remember the Parable that Jesus told where the farmer sowed good seed (The True Word of God) in His field (The Church). But “while they slept an enemy came and sowed tares.” (False Teachers) Satan for two millenniums, has sown his false doctrines and teachings. He has now refined it to a science. (A subtle hint – A doubt cast there)

Pure Christianity issued forth from Jesus Christ. During the first century it was maintained by the Apostolic Fellowship. This was despite the two great onslaughts against the Church by Satan, False Prophets and persecution.

Persecution took its toll upon the Church, there were many who would not pay its price. Yet there were thousands who would and it has been said of them “The Martyrs were seed of the Church.” The Church actually grew and flourished under the persecution in the first, second, and third centuries.

Pure Christianity has a tremendous magnetism for those who are willing to see and to hear. It is great enough to inspire total commitment and surrender.

Commitment, Understanding, Surrender:

The Church is weakened by individuals whose Commitment, Understanding, Or Surrender to the will of God is often imperfect, or completely neglected.

We talked about the growth of the Church during the first three centuries, but this rapid growth was not all pure gain for the true Church. Satan had sown his tares. False teachers and false prophets succeeded in robbing the Church of its purity and therefore most of its power.

Where persecution had failed, false Prophets and their heresies came the closest to eliminating the true Gospel of Jesus Christ. For at least one hundred years after the death of the Apostles the Gospel message was preached in all its fullness.

But the second century saw great numbers of converts come into the Church from Pagan religions. They had served Idols. Many of these converts brought with them non-Christian elements, doctrines and practices.

They clung stubbornly to ancient superstitions. They revered a host of saints and martyrs to take the place of the many Gods of Paganism. This is how the worship and praying to Mary began. This is how the word ‘Saint’ was put in front of Matthew’s name, Saint Mark. Saint Luke, Saint Paul and Saint Stephen.

As the third century Church looked at it, these were persons of exceptional holiness, who having died were now revered and so honored. But the way the New Testament used the word ‘Saint’ it was applied to all believer.
Philippians 4:21. Salute every saint in Christ Jesus. The brethren which are with me greet you.
22. All the saints salute you, chiefly they that are of Caesar's household.

Paul spoke a warning unto the Ephesians.  
Ephesians 4:14. That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;

Make a real effort to know and understand the scriptures. We want to take a look at some of the principles of the Church in the New Testament era. At the same time we will compare them to the articles of faith which our Church holds to.

Question, Can a Church today have power as the early Churches did, and yet reject the programs, policies, doctrines and purpose of those Churches? Many false Teachers say yes.

The Early Church was an evangelizing, baptizing Church and Spirit filled. The Apostles and the early Church made an all out effort to fulfill the Great Commission as it was given to them by our Lord.

Matthew 28:19. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
20. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

Mark 16:15. And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.
16. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.
17. And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;
18. They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.

Luke 24:46. And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day:
47. And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.
48. And ye are witnesses of these things.
49. And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.

It was an evangelizing, baptizing and a Spirit filled Church. Their faith rested in three great promises which our Lord left them.

1. Matthew 28:20. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

2. Acts 1:8. But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.

3. Matthew 16:18. And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

Acts 2:41. (On Pentecost) “Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.”

On the day of Pentecost and on several important days thereafter, mention is made that the Early Church baptized people by the hundreds and occasionally by the thousands.

Acts 4:4. Howbeit many of them which heard the word believed; and the number of the men was about five thousand.
Acts 5:14. And believers were the more added to the Lord, multitudes both of men and women.)
Acts 6:7. And the word of God increased; and the number of the disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly; and a great company of the priests were obedient to the faith.

It has been said that by the end of the first year the Jerusalem Church had as many as thirty thousand members. It was an Evangelizing Church. False Prophets say that the days of revival are over. Many denominations do not have Evangelist and many never have revivals.

Rev. Norman Dunning of Hull University, England speaking in South Carolina
Said, “Dull, unexciting religion has emptied the Churches of Europe since the beginning of the century, and it will do it for you in American before the century closes unless you are very careful. I can see in the Church life of America precisely the same symptoms I could see in the Church life of my own country when I began my Ministry in 1924. “We had better heed the Voice of God.”

The Church will die with no Evangelistic outlook. Jesus Himself asks the question?
Luke 18:8. ….. “When the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?”  Jesus left the question unanswered. It’s up to us to provide the answer.

Those who quote “The gates of Hell shall not prevail against it” as the guarantee that the Church cannot fail are missing the illustration, because gates belong to a city, a fortress, or a Castle.

As long as the Church is on the march, taking the initiative, storming the gates even of Hell itself, nothing can stand before it. The gates of Hell will neither stand nor prevail but will fall before the onslaught of a marching Church. But the Church that stays in camp will never break down the doors of the citadels of sin. 

God says that such Churches cannot become victorious and indeed are doomed to death. To the Church of Sardis, Jesus said: Revelation 3:1.……….“that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead.”

Don’t listen to a false Prophet who says we don’t need Revivals anymore because Churches can die without Revivals. The Church must be an attacking force.

Romans 8:35. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
37. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
38. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
39. Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

The Christian Faith swept the country of Russia in the middle ages. The Christian faith once flourished in China and it is dead now. Don’t say it can’t happen in America. It is happening before our eyes in England, which had at one time the most Christians of all Nations with the greatest Preachers in the world. Now less than 5 percent attend Church.

In fact Armenia was the First ‘Christian Nation' –now a part of Russia.
Scythians whom Paul mentions is now Russia. The country of Iran was visited by
at least 5 Apostles.

Colossians 3:11. Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all. 

11. Two Men And Two Houses:

Matthew 7:24. “Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
25. And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
26. And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
27. And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.”

Two men decided to build themselves a house to live in with their families. They desired and built their house in the same locality. In fact they were quite near to one another. The houses they built were very much alike in their appearance.

There a small creek only a stones throw behind them. The little creek would become only a trickle in late summer but the view back toward the hills from whence it came was beautiful. One man finished his house and moved in with his family at least a month before the other one.

It seemed like the last man spent most of his time digging in the ground the first few weeks. Finally, at last his house also was finished in late summer and he moved in with his family. Everything seemed so perfect. Two new houses side by side, both families were enjoying life in their new houses.

Late in October one day the sky turned grey then black with little jagged bolts of lightening. The earth shook when the thunder rolled down between those hills behind the houses. The rain began as a splattering on the window panes but seemed to increase with intensity with each passing minute.

Darker and darker the sky became until it seemed that the sun had gone out. The wind howled and small trees bent over to the earth. In a matter of moments the small creek became raging torrent spilling down off the hills behind the two houses.

The two men sat in their houses with their families. The first man who had moved in so quickly could feel his house tremble and shake. Harder and harder fell the rain, higher and higher rose the creek until the houses were surrounded.

The winds came with such force and the water from the flood began to move the first house. At first it moved just a little then began to be carried along by the moving water. Then it began to tumble over and over and broke in pieces and was swept away by the boiling, rolling and raging current.

The sad thing the family which lived there was lost in the storm. While right beside it the home which took so long to build had gone through the same storm, subjected to the same raging current, suffered the same blows from the wind stood fast in its place. The family was safe inside. What made the difference between the two men and the two houses?

The two men and the two houses:
Matthew 7:24. Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
25. And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
26. And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
27. And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.

Luke 6:48. He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock.
49. But he that heareth, and doeth not, is like a man that without a foundation built an house upon the earth; against which the stream did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great.

In these closing verses of our Lord’s Sermon He continues to emphasize the contrasting way of men’s lives.
Two Gates ---- Strait Gate --- Wide Gate
Two Pathways --- Narrow way --- Broad way
Two Trees --- Good Fruit – Evil Fruit
Two Men – Wise Man – Foolish Man
Two Foundations – Rock – Sand

Our Lord’s Teaching is:
Black and White
Good and Evil
Right and Wrong

There is no middle ground there is no broad grey line between the two which one could say “It was not clear to me.” Most preaching today is not clear and distinct, it is mostly generality. Jesus spoke in unmistakable tones and words so as not to leave any doubt in the minds of those who heard Him.

This story of the two men and the two houses is the story of our lives, my life and your life. We are one or the other, we are wise or we are foolish. We are building our house (our lives) on the rock or we are building our house (our lives) on the sinking sand.

‘Dig deep’ He says until you have found the Rock. Our Lord makes this claim that His words are the true foundation to build our house (life) upon. “These sayings of mine,…..”

We are building for eternity and in some way the house he builds will be his own habitation, or, on the other hand, its destruction will be also his own ruin. The main thought our Lord is teaching in these verses is the personal responsibility of each individual for his life, and the fact that somehow, somewhere, sometime he will render his account to God.

Let us take a close look at what Jesus said in these four verses:
Matthew 7:24. Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
25. And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
26. And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
27. And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.

The responsibility rests with us. We have spent over a year on this “Sermon on the Mount.” We did not rush. Why? Because there is no way we could exhaust the valuable principles even in a life-time of teaching. We wanted to dig deep to find the Rock.

Some of you were here almost every Sunday. You have heard me say Sunday after Sunday how important that I felt the Sermon on the Mount was. Now in verse 24 Jesus says it is something to build your life upon. In fact in verse 26--27 He say if we don’t build on these sayings, everything we build will go down.

It is inevitable the storms are going to come upon our life. Our Lord makes it plain that whether we are a Christian or not the tests are sure to come. But what He offers us is a way to weather the storms.

Jesus said that one house in this parable stood while the other fell in ruins. Seemingly there was no difference in the two houses to the outward appearance. The difference between the two men and the two houses is discovered only when the trials came, when the floods descend and the winds blow—right? Not so! The difference could have been detected long ago. Luke tells us that the wise man digged deep. The foolish man did not dig at all, and did not trouble to lay a foundation.

Jesus calls him a foolish man, he did not think all that was necessary. He could not be bothered by rules and regulation. This type of man has nothing to learn from any man. He knows it all, he thinks, until everything falls in.

“..Whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them,….” This is the rock upon which we should build our lives—His sayings—His teachings. If the foundation is wrong everything else will be wrong and eventually will cause our lives to collapse. The outside pressures of life are so great that we must have enough inner braces. We must make this Sermon on the Mount a definite part of our life and never forget its principles.

Beginning with the Nine Beatitudes:
1. Blessed are the poor in spirit
2. Blessed are they that mourn
3. Blessed are the meek
4. Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness
5. Blessed are the merciful
6. Blessed are the pure in heart
7. Blessed are the peacemakers
8. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness sake
9. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you…..

You are the salt of the earth,
You are the light of the world,
How to deal with anger,
How to turn the other cheek,
How to go the second mile
Almsgiving, Fasting and Prayer
Know the Golden Rule.

Where our treasure is there will be our heart also. Jesus’ teaching on forgiveness should never be neglected.

The effect of the Sermon on the Mount upon those who heard Jesus speak that day.
Matthew 7:28. And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine:
29. For he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.  
Matthew 8:1. When he was come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed him.

!2. Conclusion, The Reaction Of The Hearers:

The Sermon on the Mount was ended and the people were dispersing. As they went they talked of the things they had heard. Many expressed their feelings and the impressions which had been made upon them by the words of the Preacher.

Let us go back a moment to find the reason why many had come to this mountain on that day, for thousands had journeyed many miles. Why did they come? What brought them? What did they expect to happen? Were they disappointed?

Matthew 4:23. And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people.
24. And his fame went throughout all Syria: and they brought unto him all sick people that were taken with divers diseases and torments, and those which were possessed with devils, and those which were lunatick, and those that had the palsy; and he healed them.
25. And there followed him great multitudes of people from Galilee, and from Decapolis, and from Jerusalem, and from Judaea, and from beyond Jordan.  
Matthew 5:1. And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him:
2. And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying,

The excitement must have run high as the people came together on that day. On the days leading up to the Sermon on the Mount their sick had been healed, tormented souls had evil spirits cast out of them, those who had the dreaded disease of Palsy, who had been carried on cots by friends or loved one, were walking and carrying their own cots.

Blind people who had been led to the foot of the mountain now had their eyes open and were testifying to the fact. Lame men had thrown away their crutches and were leaping for joy. Some had heard Jesus speak in their own communities and had followed Him here. They had more than followed Him, they were drawn by a compelling force with caused them to leave home, families, fields, flocks, herd, trades, occupations, ships, and nets.

It was the same compelling force which drew you from your place one day to follow Jesus. I hope we all still feel it. They followed Him up the mountain, “and when He was set,’’” He’s never in a hurry.

I feel like on this day Jesus walked among this vast throng as He spoke. Farmers, Fishermen, Merchants, Shopkeepers, Tax collectors, “Doctors of Law", Pharisees, Scribes, Rich men, Poor men, Beggars, Saints and Sinners.

To everyone Jesus had something to say. He knew the burden of their heart. He knew the load which had been heaped upon them by their particular circumstance. Each one of them felt, as they looked into His eyes, that he really cared.

Matthew 5:6. Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
7. Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.

Words which the world had been waiting thousands of years to hear.
Matthew 5:20. For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.   
44. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;

On, and on, how to give alms, how to fast, how to pray, and where to lay up their treasures. He told them not to worry about what they would eat, drink or wear. But about all things, seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness.

They and the entire world will always remember the story of the man who would pull the mote from his brother’s eye while he himself had a beam protruding from his own eye.

Then in conclusion our Lord proclaimed these words were the foundation of life.
The long Sermon was over and the day had slipped by almost unnoticed. The vast throng was unwearied. None seemed in a hurry to leave. The atmosphere was charged with an unseen presence. We have all felt it.

They talked one with another.   
Matthew 7:28. And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine:
29. For he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.

Astonished, amazed, “To be exceedingly struck in the mind” “greatly wondering” “The root meaning signifying to render immovable.” We would say that we were held spell bound.

Astonished, Spell Bound at His Doctrine:”
Matthew 13:54. And when he was come into his own country, he taught them in their synagogue, insomuch that they were astonished, and said, Whence hath this man this wisdom, and these mighty works?
Mark 6:2. …….and many hearing him were astonished, saying, From whence hath this man these things? and what wisdom is this which is given unto him,”
Luke 4:32. And they were astonished at his doctrine: for his word was with power.
John 7:46. The officers answered, Never man spake like this man.   
Matthew 7:29. For he taught them as one having authority and not as the scribes.

The Scribes and Pharisees taught from the words of Torah, Sacred writings and oral traditions. “The Torah says…” “Our Law says….” “Moses says…”
But Jesus said, “I say unto you,,,,,” Jesus had authority from God and God sent the power.

Now we want to see what their response, and reaction was.

Matthew 8:1. When he was come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed him.
Why are we here today?
What do we expect to happen?
Will we be disappointed when we leave here today?
What is our response, reaction, comment, on the message, on the Preacher?
Will we follow Jesus?

We have come to the end of our study of The Sermon On The Mount #4.

We certainly hope you enjoyed this study, and we hope you found something in this study that will help you in your Christian walk.

A Study Of The Sermon On The Mount #1
A Study Of The Sermon On The Mount #2

A Study Of The Sermon On The Mount #3

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By, James L. Thornton

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