The Sermon on the Mount: Matthew 5 – 7
In the Gospel of Matthew chapter 5-7, Jesus gives this awesome sermon which we have come to know as the Sermon on the Mount. Jesus basically goes up a mountain with his followers and holds a teaching conference, a retreat. I’m not sure for how long – maybe it was a three day conference. During this conference Jesus unpacks some phenomenal truths – they are simple truths yet they are really profound, they are deep truths for living life to the full. The theologian and preacher Martyn Lloyd Jones said of the simplicity of this teaching that ‘if we ignore it, it will be at our peril’. Jesus in this sermon teaches his disciples, his followers and he teaches us how we can really live the life that God has called us to live, how we can really ‘live the dream’ not a superficial life, not a life based on fantasy but a life that is real, a life that is full of meaning, full of blessing, full of depth, full of love, full of fruit and full productivity for the Kingdom of God. This incredible sermon that Jesus gives is his Kingdom manifesto for living, it is his Kingdom manifesto for life. In this country we are used to manifestos and promises from politicians and political parties that very often promise everything yet too frequently fail to deliver, but this sermon that Jesus delivers, this manifesto lives up to everything it says. It is truth, it is hope – if you live it out and act on these wonderful teachings it will cause you to rise above. Lived out this sermon will set you apart, lived out it will guide you through the dark times, the difficult times, lived out it will cause people to see you as a beacon of hope, lived out it will show the world Jesus living in you. So it is very important that we take note of this sermon.
This sermon is radical, it goes against the culture of the day, it is counter cultural. In other words it is the polar opposite to what the world says and does. The Kingdom of God, you see is an upside-down kingdom where leaders are servants, neighbours and enemies are loved, and poor widows give away half their money. Humility is exalted, the first shall be last, offenders are forgiven 70 x 7, and ethnic outsiders kneel down to help ½ dead strangers lying in a ditch. The way of Jesus is countercultural. It is upside-down and inside-out—a Kingdom, where weakness is power, power is weakness, and suffering leads to glory.
It packs a punch, it is revolutionary, it is what people needed then and I believe it is what people need now. This sermon is relevant to us today, it speaks to us today and it speaks directly to the situation and context that we find ourselves in. So in our Sunday services we are going to take some of these truths and teach on them and apply them to our lives. In November during our Life Group slots we are going to do some Growth Tracks and Bible Studies on the Sermon on the Mount, there will also be some online options for those not in life groups to take part and also in November we will have a series of video devotionals coming out on the Beatitudes – it’s going to be fun, it’s going to be challenging and it’s going to be life changing.
Treasures in Heaven: Matthew 6:19-21 – Jon Baldwin
The Cure for Anxiety: Matthew 6:25 – Jackie Williams
Do Not Judge: Matthew 7:1-5 – Ian Williams
Living The Dream Ask, Seek, Knock: Matthew 7:7-8 – Caz Hickley
The Wide And Narrow Gate: Matthew 7:13-14 – Jordan Williams.
Truth or False: Matthew 7:15-23 – Ian Williams
Life Group / Growth Track resources
Check out this video from Jon Baldwin as he gives some context and offers some insight to the Sermon on the Mount.