“The Kingdom of Heaven is Near!” As Jesus began His earthly ministry, that was the message He proclaimed as He walked and talked His way through Galilee. Jesus spoke often of the Kingdom of Heaven, which began in Jerusalem at Pentecost, continues through the work of the Church, and will be fully realized at Christ’s return. But as citizens of Heaven, how shall we live?
This month we begin a new sermon series called “Life 101”, where we will examine a passage central to Brethren theology, The Sermon on the Mount. In Matthew 5-7, Jesus describes how His followers should live. Though often simple in its teaching, the Sermon on the Mount challenges us, driving us above spiritual mediocrity and towards a fully Christlike character.
This sermon series will actually consist of two parts. In Part 1, we will look at the “Beatitudes”, eight characteristics that Jesus calls “blessed”. These values run counter to those held by many in our world. For the various blessings Christ offers, we will use different parables to illustrate the profound truth they contain.
Then, in Part 2, we will work our way through the various teachings contained in Christ’s mountaintop message. From spiritual influence, to teachings about love of enemies, prayer, wealth, and avoiding sinful behavior, the Sermon on the Mount encompasses the core of Jesus’ teaching about our relationships with others, and with God. During this series we will focus on applying these principles to our lives in ways that make us more and more like our Savior.
I look forward to sharing with you this sermon series over the next few months.
Until His Kingdom Comes,