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A Few Notes on The Sermon on the Mount


This was a portion of our Sunday class discussion today, August 9. Download the notes (PDF) here.




The Beatitudes have eight blessings with promises. The first and last blessings are already received by kingdom people. The other six blessings await a future day when the kingdom of God is fully consummated. However, though there is a definite day of consummation at the return of Christ, all of these “blessings” are already being enjoyed by believers in this age (“already but not yet”).

Verse Blessing Promise Present/Future? OT Reference
3 Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven Present Isa 61:1
4 Blessed are those who mourn for they shall be comforted Future Isa 61:2, 3
5 Blessed are the meek for they shall inherit the earth Future Psa 37:11
6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness for they shall be satisfied Future Psa 42:2; Isa 55:1, 2
7 Blessed are the merciful for they shall receive mercy Future Deut 15:7-10
8 Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God Future Psa 24:4
9 Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called sons of God Future Isa 52:7; Psa 34:14
10 Blessed are those who are per­secuted for righteousness’ sake for theirs is the kingdom of heaven Present 1 Kgs 19:10

5:17: Christ came to fulfill the law



Jesus introduces his sermon with this declaration: He came to fulfill the Law and the Prophets (whole OT). Read Luke 24: 27, 44; Rom 3:31. Where Adam failed, Jesus triumphed (Rom 5:17-19).

5:21-48: “You have heard that it was said… But I say to you”

verses 21, 27, 33, 38, 43. Jesus corrects the faulty interpretations of the OT that were common during his time.

These are not true:

a. The OT is wrong or insufficient.

b. Jesus is making the law more strict.

c. The OT is all about external acts, while the NT is all about the heart (Deut 30:6; Psa 103:1; Joel 2:13).

Verse Jesus’ Teaching OT Teaching
21 anger and hate = murder Prv 6:12-15 (those who hate will be judged)
27 Lust = adultery in the heart Job 31:1; Prv 6:25 (lusting after other women is sinful)
31 no divorce, except for adultery Deut 24:1; Jer 3:8 (God “divorced” Israel for “adultery”)
33 fulfilling oaths Num 30:2 (all who make vows are bound to fulfill them)
38 no retaliation Deut 19:20-21 (this is civil, not personal law)
43 loving your enemies Lev 19:18: Exo 23:4-5 (even enemies are to be respected)
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