3 O the joy of the poor in spirit, the kingdom of Heaven belongs to them.
As we look at each of the beatitudes we will be spending quite a lot of time on them over a few days.
Perhaps we are more familiar with the word ‘Blessed’, but the Greek is also capable of being translated as an exclamation. Also there is no verb in the Greek; the verb ‘are’ has been added in English.
In each of the statements of blessing the translation is in the form of an exclamation, such as: ‘O the joy of the poor in spirit’.
This is also seen in Psalm 1.1:
Oh, the joys of those who do not follow the advice of the wicked,
or stand around with sinners, or join in with scoffers.
The beauty of the beatitudes is that they convey to us that our God is a God of blessing, and He wants His people to enjoy happiness in Him through Jesus.
The word ‘blessing’ is worthy of looking into some more.
We may all have difficulties to deal with at various times, but the blessings of God are not subject to the difficulties we may face, instead His blessings see us through the hard times.
David knew this and expressed in Psalm 23.4:
Even when I walk through the dark valley of death,
I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me.
Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me.
God wants our life in Christ to be a delightful experience, even though our pathway may be rough at times.
He wants us to have a life that is filled with His joy. One of the fruits of the Holy Spirit is ‘joy’ (Galatians 5.22).
Jesus gave His life on the cross so that our life will fall in pleasant places:
The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
surely I have a delightful inheritance – Psalm 16.6 (NIV).
As the followers of Jesus we should have a cheerful attitude, because this is what He wants for us, whatever the circumstances.
Knowing and experiencing the blessing of God leads us to having a contented life.
Paul knew this and wrote:
I have learned how to get along happily whether I have much or little – Philippians 4.11 (NLT).