The term “Blessed” means to be made holy or to be endowed with divine favor and protection. Being “Blessed” is to receive pleasure or relief in contrast to what was previously experienced.
When Jesus is speaking during the Sermon on the Mount, He starts with the “Beatitudes”. The term Beatitude means “supreme blessedness” or “supremely blessed”. In the beatitudes Jesus tells the crowd what it means to be blessed. So when Jesus is referring to those who are “Blessed” He is referring to the faithful believers who experience divine favor and are made Holy by God through His divine grace. This is huge. In modern day society, we view possessions or physical gifts as the only avenue to be “Blessed”. But at the Sermon on the Mount Jesus explains that being “blessed” by God is far deeper than anything of this world. To be “blessed” by Jesus is deeper than any physical emotion - it surpasses the flesh and satisfies our spirits with an eternal blessing.
I don’t want to write the longest blog ever, so I am only going to cover one of the beatitudes. In Matthew 5:3 Jesus says, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
To be poor in spirit is the opposite of what society tells us today. Modern day society will tell you to “believe in yourself”, “you can do what ever you put your mind too”, or my personal favorite, “if you can believe it, you can achieve it”. All these quotes are indeed inspiring, but they call for self-sufficiency when our only way to experience divine grace and receive salvation is through Christ Jesus. In fact, it says in Ephesians 2 that we are dead in our sin without Jesus. This is why Jesus says in Matthew 5:3,“blessed are the ones who are poor in spirit”. This verse describes the opposite of self-suffiency. Poor in spirit identifies those who recognize they are weak and cannot make it without a Savior. The poor in spirit are those who humble themselves before the Lord and confess they are nothing without Jesus.
People who are poor in spirit recognize the gravity of their sin and fully understand that there is nothing they can do to earn their salvation without Jesus. The poor in spirit understand that salvation comes through total and complete reliance on the Gospel of Jesus Christ and that His sacrifice on the cross is the only way that we can be cleansed of our sins.
I encourage you be poor in spirit and humble yourself before God to receive the blessing of grace. Through grace come joy, peace, love, satisfaction and many more eternal riches. This is why Jesus says in end of verse 3, those who are poor in spirit; their blessing “is the kingdom of heaven.”
Love in Christ,