“Blessed are those who mourn,
for they shall be comforted.” Matthew 5:4, TLV
Imagine, if you will, Jesus sees the crowds following Him. Like lost sheep that instinctively understand that this Man is their true Shepherd, they come. Are they drawn by the miracles He’s performed? Probably. Wouldn’t we?
Others hope He is the Messiah they have waited and prayed for. Many hope He is their Deliverer — from the Roman oppression.
As Yeshua climbs the mountain, the crowds follow. He sits and His disciples sit with Him (vs. 1). Jesus opens His mouth and teaches …
What does He begin with? Blessings. Comfort. Encouragement. Empathy.
Yeshua sees each person and what they are going through. He knows they are hurting and lost. Because He and His Father have a plan of deliverance, He sets the tone for a deliverance like no other.
“Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and say all kinds of evil against you falsely, on account of Me.” (vs. 11, TLV)
Then, the tone of His blessings, comfort, encouragement, and empathy changes. Jesus is saying that not only does He know and understand all the evil being acted out against them, they are blessed because of it.
“But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven.” (vss. 44-45, TLV)
Matthew records two more chapters of Yeshua’s teaching. And the people listened. The people stayed.
Yes, Yeshua was there for the lost of Israel — He was their Messiah, the One their prophets spoke of — but He was also there for Israel’s enemies, including the Romans.
Have we spiritually “quarantine” ourselves from the world? Does it feel like we are also being oppressed? Then, according to Jesus, we’re blessed. Not only blessed, but we are to pray for those who persecute us. The same sweet salvation and atonement we have, we want for them.
An unexpected blessing? Yes. But aren’t we glad someone, somewhere prayed that we would receive this blessing? Amen.