The Sermon on the Mount has been called the greatest sermon ever preached. John Stott has noted that the Sermon on the Mount is “probably the best known part of the teachings of Jesus, though arguably it is the least understood, and certainly it is the least obeyed.”
I have found this to be true in my own journey of trying to understand and live out these words of Jesus. They are beautiful words that seem to defy reality. They seem to be speaking of another world that is not quite like ours.
But what if these words are really for us today in Vancouver? What would it look like for our community to journey together to understand and live out these words of Jesus in Vancouver? What if this is exactly how we can participate in God's kingdom here and now?
In preparation for our study and discussion, please set aside 30 minutes to slowly read through Matthew 5-7. As you are reading, ask yourself: Who is Jesus speaking to? What happens before this? Why these words and why at this particular time and place? What stands out to you about what he is saying? What do you think the audience is thinking and feeling as they are listening to Jesus? What do you feel as you read these words of Jesus? Have you tried living this out? Why or why not?
We will begin our study on October 15 with Matthew 5:1-3:
"Now when Jesus saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, and he began to teach them. He said: 'Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.'"
EXTRA RESOURCES FOR DIGGING DEEPER
For those who want to do some extra reading to help with your study, here are 3 books that I highly recommend:
- Studies in the Sermon on the Mount by D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
- The Message of the Sermon on the Mount by John Stott
- Sermon on the Mount (The Story of God Bible Commentary) by Scot McKnight
You should be able to buy these on Amazon or at Regent bookstore. If you can only invest in one of these books, I would suggest the one by Lloyd-Jones. It is brilliant!
I can’t wait to explore the Sermon on the Mount together as a community! We have an exciting journey ahead of us!