Daily Devotional – The Beatitudes by Thomas Watson Part XXXIII

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Image Depicting Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount

The Beatitudes

by Thomas Watson

An Exposition of Matthew 5:1-12 

Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.”
“Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.”
“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.”
“Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.”
“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.”
“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.”
“Blessed are those who are persecuted, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven

Christian Meekness (Continued) 
Remembering the overall theme is meek people are blessed people.

Meekness towards MAN; Continued:

I shall lay down several MOTIVES or arguments to meeken the spirits of men.

7. Consider the harm of an unmeek spirit. There is nothing which makes such room for the devil to come into the heart and take possession, as wrath and anger. ‘Let not the sun go down upon your wrath, neither give place to the devil’ (Ephesians 4:26, 27). When men let forth passion, they let in Satan. The wrathful man has the devil for his bedfellow. Passion hinders peace. The meek Christian has sweet quiet and harmony in his soul—but passion puts the soul into a disorder. It not only clouds reason—but disturbs conscience. He does not possess himself, whom passion possesses. It is no wonder if they have no peace of conscience, who make so little conscience of peace. Wrathfulness grieves the Spirit of God (Ephesians 4:30, 31), and if the Spirit is grieved, he will be gone. We do not care to stay in smoky houses. The Spirit of God does not love to be in that heart which is so full of the vapors and fumes of distempered passion.

8. Another argument to cool the intemperate heat of our cursed hearts, is to consider that all the injuries and unkind usages we meet with from the world, do not fall out by chance—but are disposed of by the all-wise God for our good. Many are like the foolish cur, which snarls at the stone, never looking to the hand that threw it; or like the horse, who being spurred by the rider, bites the snaffle. If we looked higher than instruments our hearts would grow meek and calm. David looked beyond Shimei’s rage: ‘Let him curse, for the Lord has bidden him’ (2 Samuel 16:11). What wisdom is it for Christians to see the hand of God in all the barbarisms and incivilities of men! Job eyed God in his affliction, and that meekened his spirit. ‘The Lord has taken away, blessed be the name of the Lord!’ (Job 1:21). He does not say, The Chaldeans have taken away—but ‘The Lord has taken away’. What made Christ so meek in his sufferings? He did not look at Judas or Pilate—but at his Father. ‘The cup which my Father has given me’ (John 18:11). When wicked men revile and injure us, they are but God’s executioners. Who is angry with the executioner?

And as God has a hand in all the affronts and discourtesies we receive from men (for they but hand them over to us), so God will do us good by all, if we belong to him. ‘It may be’ (says David) ‘that the Lord will look upon my affliction, and requite me good for his cursing’ (2 Samuel 16:12). Usually, when the Lord intends us some signal mercy, he fits us for it by some eminent trial. As Moses’ hand was first leprous before it wrought salvation (Exodus 4:6), so God may let his people be belepered with the cursings and revilings of men, before he shower down some blessings upon them. ‘It may be the Lord will requite me good for his cursing this day.’

9. Lack of meekness evidences lack of grace. True grace inflames love and moderates anger. Grace is like the file which smooths the rough iron. It files off the ruggedness of a man’s spirit. Grace says to the heart as Christ did to the angry sea, ‘Peace, be still’ (Mark 4:39). So where there is grace in the heart, it stills the raging of passion and makes a calm. He who is in a perpetual frenzy, letting loose the reins to wrath and malice—has never yet felt the sweet efficacy of grace. It is one of the sins of the heathen to be ‘implacable’ (Romans 1:31). A revengeful cankered heart, is not only heathenish—but devilish. ‘If you have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, this wisdom descends not from above—but is devilish’ (James 3:14, 15). The old serpent spits forth the poison of malice and revenge

 

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