The Beatitudes are like a roadmap on how we are to live on Earth as if we are living in Heaven.
The Beatitudes are eight blessings from the Gospel of Matthew declared by Jesus to his disciples. These blessings can be used to help us on Earth treat people the way we are to treat them in Heaven. The Beatitudes encourage compassion, humility, love for enemies, and a strong desire for justice. They are some of the best teachings from Jesus in the Bible. We live in the “already not yet” time period. This is a theological concept where we live in the present age, the now, and because of our salvation, we also live as if we are living in the kingdom of Heaven. The beatitudes remind us that we are to live daily as if we are currently in Heaven even though we are physically here on Earth – that’s the “already not yet” concept.
During this first part of the two-part series covering the Beatitudes, Lee Ann shares how we can explain the Beatitudes to our children and discusses the first four Beatitudes:
- Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of Heaven:
- The word poor that Jesus uses here refers to those who are living in abject poverty.
- Our children need to understand that the world’s riches mean nothing and that we are blessed even if we are poor – the great reversal because we will have everything in Heaven.
- Tell your children the story of Mother Theresa; she had nothing but was so happy and blessed because she knew she would gain everything in Heaven.
- Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted:
- Everyone will suffer loss at one point in life, and Jesus tells us we are blessed because he will wrap his loving arms around us one day.
- Help your children understand that when they lose a loved one who believes in Jesus, they can rejoice after their initial sadness (the loss), for they are in the arms of Jesus.
- Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the Earth:
- In Jesus’ day, many were oppressed, and justice belonged to wealthy and influential people.
- Teach your children to be generous and not greedy in actions, words, and deeds and be content with what they have.
- Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness:
- Righteousness means right relationships with God, others, yourself, and all of God’s creation.
- Those who hunger and thirst don’t have the right relationships with God and others.
- God ate and drank with those who were great sinners who didn’t have it together.
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