door and ask somebody to heal him. Do you see Naaman's attitude?The man of God sent a messenger out to Naaman. It angered Naaman that the man of God wouldn't comeout. The messenger told Naaman to go wash seven times in the Jordan River and his flesh would be cleansed.But Naaman still couldn't get off his high horse. He said, "What do you mean, go and wash in the dirty JordanRiver? Are not the rivers of where I come from in Damascus much cleaner than those of the dirty Jordan?"Then a humble servant of Naaman told him, "My father, if the prophet told you to do this great thing youought to do it." The story has a happy ending: Naaman got down from his high horse and washed not one timebut seven times as the man of God had said. In obedience, he dipped himself seven times in the Jordan Riverand when he came up, his skin was as clean as a young man's.Some of us cannot be cleansed because we cannot get off our high horses. We cannot be obedient to whatthe Word of God is telling us. Many of us are still dealing with attitudes of self-sufficiency. God wants us tostep down off of our high horse.
A Personal Testimony
Some years ago, I was invited to Alaska to lead a revival. While there, God spoke to me in the pulpit abouta young lady for my son, George III, to marry. I wrestled with what I understood God to be saying. Finally, inobedience to what God was asking me to do, He asked me to claim it in His name. Six and a half years later,the couple walked down the aisle and was married. What is significant is how I got to Alaska. Who invitedme there and why did they invite me? I didn't know the pastor there and I had never heard of him. When I gotthere, I asked him why he had invited me to come do this revival.He told me, "Oh, I've been to your church. I was there and saw you carrying chairs with the men. I said tomyself, 'If I were pastor of this church, I wouldn't carry chairs.' I decided you must be the man I want to runthis revival." There would not have been a blessed wedding in my family if there had not been an act of humility on my part. There would not be a Spirit-filled daughter-in-law if not for an act of humility on mypart.
These blessings in the text are commonly called the Beatitudes. They are really action attitudes. They aredemonstrated attitudes. They are attitudes with a verb in front of them. These are "be-attitudes." These areacts of attitude that are put into a form of demonstration. The Beatitudes should really be interpreted not asreceivers of the blessing, but as an inherent state of happiness. The receivers are just simply blessed.Scripture tells us, beginning in Chapter 5, Jesus sees all these people who are not taking advantage of theabundant life the Father sent Him down to bring. Jesus says, "I came that you might have life and you mighthave it more abundantly, and look at you. You are no living abundantly." So, Jesus sets the disciples downand tells them how to be blessed. He didn't talk to the multitude. He set the disciples down and taught themhow to be blessed. And He wants us, His contemporary disciples, to sit down and learn how to be blessed.
Blessed Are the Poor in Spirit
"Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven"
(v. 3). Jesus is not necessarily sayingpoor in material things. One can be rich, but poor in spirit; one can be poor, and poor in spirit. Jesus is sayingthat the poor in spirit know their help comes only from the Lord. Blessed are those that have a be-attitude:they are living in an inherent state of knowing that their help comes from the Lord. Blessed are those that arepoor in spirit; they are blessed because they know they are nothing without God. I don't care how muchmoney we have or how little money we have, we are blessed because we realize we are nothing without God.We are but a ship without a sail.
Blessed Are They That Mourn
"Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted"
(v. 4). What do they mourn about? And whoshall comfort them? They mourn about their past sins. They mourn about the sinful conditions of the world,and they mourn because they are truly sorry for their sinful life. They're not walking around with an attitudeof I'm okay, you're okay. Their attitude is that I was born in sin and conceived in iniquity. Those who mournare almost in a state of constant repentance. Every moment they are not reaching the holiness of God, theymourn about it. But, thank God, they hear the voice of Jesus saying,
"Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest"
(Matthew 11:28— KJV).Have we mourned this week for our past sins, our present sins, and our sinful condition? Some of us haveFreely Shared