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Matthew 5:3-11 (NIV)

Blessed are the....

The Sermon on the Mount is the greatest evangelical sermon ever preached and replete with blessings. Some of us may measure up to those standards better than others, but none of us can hold a candle to the Lord Jesus Christ, who embodies the goodness of that sermon in Himself. For example, some of us may be more merciful than others. But does that mercy stand scrutiny in the light of the mercy of Christ Himself? This does not mean that we shouldn't be imitators of God (Ephesians 5:1). It merely means that none of us can be as merciful as Christ Himself is.

By extension, it is evident that we are not as peaceful or in the same league of peacemakers as Christ Himself. Great men like Henry Kissinger and Jimmy Carter brokered lasting peace deals between warring nations. But neither is in the same league as the Lord Jesus Christ, Who brokered eternal peace between God and man on the cross.

Likewise, a man may throw himself on a grenade to save his buddies. But that doesn't guarantee the soldier had love in his heart (1 Corinthians 13:3). Even Mary, the blessed virgin and mother of the Son of God, would not have entered without explicit faith in her Son.

The Bible is a set of standards we all aspire to but always fall short of. It is also the story about the only One who met and exceeded the standards in the gospels. It is time that we started trusting in Christ, the only Perfection, rather than trying to attain that on our own or admiring those who are not perfect enough compared to Jesus of Nazareth.

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