“Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
Matthew 5:10 (KJV)
How are you today? I hope you have been enjoying The Beatitudes Series by DUO Inspirations. I look at the Beatitudes as words of encouragement and love spoken by Jesus himself.
There is some disagreement as to the number of beatitudes. Some people believe that there are eight beatitudes and some feel that there are nine beatitudes. There are also some who believe that the Beatitudes end at Matthew 5:10 and others who believe that the Beatitudes end with Matthew 5:12.
This may cause some confusion in your mind. However, before it does, remember the words of Paul in 1 Corinthians 14:33 (KJV), “For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.” Instead of feeling confused, pray for understanding. Focus on the message of Jesus, not the terminology of people.
So, let’s look at Matthew 5:10. The first part of the verse says, “Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake…”. Persecution can take many forms. It can come in many forms such as in gossip, chiding, outcast, ridicule, put downs, harassment, discrimination, abuse, neglect, or death.
Everyone has probably experienced persecution in one form or another at some point in his or her life. I have experienced a number of these forms of persecution. You probably have as well.
So, if you are persecuted, is it always for righteousness’ sake? No. I wouldn’t say so. People are gossiped against, chided, discriminated against, abused, and put to death for bad ways as well. For example, just as in the Bible, criminals of today get put to death as well as followers of Jesus.
Jesus wouldn’t have specified “for righteousness’ sake” if people were only persecuted “for righteousness’ sake”. People are persecuted for things doing bad things as well, such as following worldly ways, evilness, and criminal behavior.
As with the other beatitudes, the encouragement comes in the second part of the verse, “for theirs will be the kingdom of heaven”. I find it interesting that this beatitude has the same encouragement as the first beatitude and the others are different. What about you?
For those of you who have read “The Beatitudes Series – Part 1”, you may remember that I wasn’t sure about the meaning of “for theirs will be the kingdom of heaven”. I guess I am still not completely sure. However, with more studying and more prayer, I believe that I do have a better understanding.
As Christians who follow Jesus and do God’s will, we are called “brothers” or “sisters” to Jesus (such as in Matthew 12:50). Matthew 12:50 (KJV) says, “For whosoever shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother.” We are also called co-heirs (or joint-heirs) with Christ (as in Romans 8:17). Romans 8:17 (KJV) says, “And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.” Therefore, since the kingdom of heaven is God’s and Jesus will reign, we will be a part of it, instead of being cast out and left in Satan’s kingdom. We will be close to God and part of His family, not part of Satan’s group.
So, it sounds to me that Jesus is saying in Matthew 5:10, that we are not to be discouraged if we are mistreated for the sake of standing up for what is right and following God’s will for us, because no matter how badly we are treated by the world, we will be loved and rewarded with being part of His family now and forever. This sounds like wonderful consolation and encouragement for withstanding some persecution in the spec of lifespan we may have on earth. What do you think?
Thank you for the encouragement found in all the beatitudes and in Matthew 5:10 specifically. Thank you for giving us something to remember and to look forward to when we are persecuted for doing your will. Help us to persevere during all hardship we receive as a result of doing your will and not to give in to the evil that surrounds us during these difficult times. Help us to keep our eyes on you and be encouraged with our reward. I ask you this through your Son, Jesus. Amen.
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Reflective questions for Matthew 5:10 (KJV):
*What does Matthew 5:10 mean to me?
*What does it mean to be persecuted?
*What does it mean to be persecuted for righteousness’ sake?
*Have I ever been persecuted?
*Have I ever been persecuted for righteousness’ sake?
*How did it feel to be persecuted, especially for righteousness’ sake?
*What does “for theirs is the kingdom of heaven,” mean?
*How can I better live according to the words in Matthew 5:10?
If you haven't already read the other posts in The Beatitudes Series by DUO Inspirations, you may want to read them now.
*The Beatitudes Series by DUO Inspirations - Part 1
*The Beatitudes Series by DUO Inspirations - Part 2
*The Beatitudes Series by DUO Inspirations - Part 3
*The Beatitudes Series by DUO Inspirations - Part 4
*The Beatitudes Series by DUO Inspirations - Part 5
*The Beatitudes Series by DUO Inspirations - Part 6
*The Beatitudes Series by DUO Inspirations - Part 7
Now, it is your turn.
Thank you for being here. I appreciate it. I care about you and look forward to knowing your thoughts and feelings about Matthew 5:10, The Beatitudes Series by DUO Inspirations, the Faith Blog by DUO Inspirations, or any faith topic. Please, feel free to comment below or to contact me.
It is my hope, through the Faith Blog by DUO Inspirations, to help spread God's Word and to encourage others to read the Bible for themselves, as well as to offer food for thought and better understanding of scriptures. If you find value in the Faith Blog by DUO Inspirations, please share with your friends, family, and church group, so they can find value as well. Let's spread God's Word together. Thank you. (And, if we are persecuted, we will be in good company for Jesus was persecuted as well.)
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“And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.”
Matthew 6:13 (KJV)
How are you? This verse is sort of a bottom line, summary, of our prayer to God and this post is the last post in this Lord’s Prayer devotion series. I hope it has blessed you in some way to ponder the words of the Lord’s Prayer more closely and in depth. I pray that you pray these words and not recite them. I pray that I do the same.
I believe that every word in the Bible means something and is meant to be there. However, to be honest, I am not sure why “And lead us not into temptation” is part of this prayer. I trust Jesus, and wouldn’t question their worth. It just sounds kind of strange, knowing that our Father in Heaven is a loving God. He wants the best for us and it is strange asking Him not to “lead us into temptation.” Unless, maybe it is saying not to harden our hearts, as He did Pharaoh’s when we go against His will, but to give us more chances and more direction. Often, once our heart is hardened and our mind is closed, we spiral downhill and we are not only tempted but sin in many ways. What do you think?
After consulting a friend, praying, and rereading this verse, I believe that the word “lead” is the important word in this phrase. We are to put our trust in God and let Him lead us. We are to be obedient to His will and not try to do things our own way. Trust me, the latter isn’t good. We are often our own worst enemy. Yet, God is good and will lead us away from temptation if we ask and put our trust in Him.
I understand the part about, “but deliver us from evil.” I have prayed that many times. I want to do God’s will and I don’t want anything evil to come near me, tempt me, or hurt me in anyway.
The last part of this verse is a powerful one. I believe that it is meant for us to acknowledge that we are nothing without God and that everything we do should be for God and to grow His kingdom. I believe that it is meant to acknowledge that we pray and we do what we do as Christians, because we want to be of the kingdom of God and not of the world. That is our focus. We are called to acknowledge and understand that God has the power to help us, to hurt us, to give us life, to give us death, to move mountains, to heal us, to create everything from nothing, to destroy everything, as well as to love us and provide for us unconditionally or conditionally. Acknowledging God’s power also is intended to assure us that we can put our faith in Him fully and that we are to fear Him in a loving way and be obedient to Him. We are His creations. We are His servants. We are His children. We are called to give Him the glory. And, I believe as Christians, that this isn’t a chore or a task given to us by a master, but an act of love. We want to do these things. We know that God loves us and we want to love Him back.
Thank you for sending us Jesus, your only begotten Son, to be our teacher, our savior, and our ultimate role model. Thank you for these words on how to pray. Help us to pray them and not just recite them without thought or feeling. Help us to strive to build, to pray for, and to uplift your kingdom. Help us to acknowledge your ultimate power and to fear you and love you in the most loving and obedient way. Help us to give you the glory in all that we do and not do or seek our own glory. I ask you this through your Son, Jesus. Amen.
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Reflective questions for Matthew 6:13 (KJV):
*What does Matthew 6:13 mean to me?
*Do I pray these words or recite these words?
*Have I truly pondered or prayed about the meaning of the Lord’s Prayer?
*Do I pray for God’s kingdom and try to uplift it and grow it?
*What can I do to uplift and grow God’s kingdom?
*Do I acknowledge God’s power?
*Do I both fear God and have faith in Him, knowing that He has the power to
help me or hurt me?
*Do I give God the glory in all I do or do I seek the praise and the credit for
“Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.”
Matthew 6:10 (KJV)
Last week, I started a series on the Lord’s Prayer, given to us by Jesus. We may say or recite the Lord’s Prayer, but do we pray it? Do we think about the words? Do we live by the words?
“Thy kingdom come.” What does that mean to you? We all get something out of the Bible and out of a prayer. God has a special message for each of us. I read commentaries and each says something different. It means something different to each of us. However, it means the same also. That is why I pray before I write. I want God’s message and not my own message.
We are called to grow God’s kingdom and to pray for it. There are believers, unbelievers, and people who are lukewarm in the middle. Yet, we are called to encourage belief and to grow God’s community of believers. We are called to believe ourselves and help others to believe. We are called to be part of God’s kingdom and not the “kingdom of the world” or “Satan’s kingdom” or whatever we want to call the evilness of the world.
So, we have heard of the second coming of Jesus and how He will rule. Is that what Jesus is talking about here? Um. I don’t think it is just that. It may be part of it. Yet, to me, it means that we are to pray for and be a part of God’s kingdom now and forever, here and in life everlasting. Our choice is to be of this world or of God.
We are also called to not only submit to God’s will, but to want it. We are called to ask for it. We are called to acknowledge it. We are called to do it. In so doing, we are acknowledging that we are part of God’s kingdom and willingly want to do His will here on earth and once we get in heaven.
And, why would we do all this? Why would we want to have God’s will instead of our own? Love! We want this, because we love God and we know that He loves us. We know that God’s way and God’s plan is better than anything we can plan. It all comes down to love and thanksgiving. If we have a place in God’s kingdom here on earth, we will be rewarded with a place in God’s kingdom in heaven. What a beautiful reward in which to look forward!
Thank you for loving us and creating us. Thank you for sending us your Son, Jesus, who taught us how to pray. Thank you for inviting us and calling us to be part of your kingdom on earth and in heaven. Help us to pray for your will and your kingdom. Help us to be like Jesus, our ultimate role model, in our efforts to pray, to follow your will, and to grow your kingdom. I ask you this through your Son, Jesus. Amen.
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Reflective questions for Matthew 6:10 (KJV):
*What does Matthew 6:10 mean to me?
*Do I want to be part of God’s kingdom, part of the world’s kingdom, or part
of my own kingdom? (Be honest.)
*Do I ask God to let His will be done or ask that my will be done?
*Do I recite the Lord’s Prayer or do I pray it?
*What can I do to better live the Lord’s Prayer?
*What can I do to help grow and pray for God’s kingdom?
Now, it is your turn.
I would like to hear your thoughts. Please, leave me a comment. Thank you. God bless!
This is Jodi. I am so glad you are here! I am a Christian and life-long learner. I enjoy sharing and encouraging others. I pray you are blessed by this blog. Thank you for being here.