NTB-1-MATT-3 - Matthew: The Greatest Sermon Ever

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“Matthew: Lesson 3”

Introduction by narrator accompanied by a cappella singing:
THE GOSPEL OF CHRIST. Spreading the soul-saving message of Jesus. And now,
Ben Bailey.

Today we have the privilege of studying the greatest sermon ever
preached. The sermon is not by men, nor is the content from men. We're
studying today about the great Sermon on the Mount delivered by our Lord
and Savior Jesus Christ in Matthew 5 through 7.
Get your Bible as we think about this powerful message together.
The Sermon on the Mount has been heralded as one of the greatest
teachings of how to live for Christ ever delivered naturally given by the
master teacher Himself, Jesus Christ. This sermon is all about the qualities,
the characteristics, and the lifestyle that a follower of Christ ought to have.
It takes a person from the beginning of faith, to a faith that is ready to stand
the test of time, and ultimately give its life for the Lord and Savior Jesus
We begin by noting the characteristics of someone who's going to be
a part of Christ’s kingdom. I believe these have been aptly described as
kingdom characteristics.
What's the character of someone who's going to be in the kingdom of
Christ like? The Beatitudes of Matthew 5:1-12 beautifully described that
character. You have, first of all, the beginning of faith in Matthew 5:3-5.
Listen to these beautiful words Jesus says in Matthew 5:3. “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 kingdom of God.” You have those who are poor in spirit, those
who mourn, and those who are meek. If I'm going to come to Christ, I've
got to realize spiritually my own poverty. When we read ‘blessed are the
poor in spirit,’ it’s about realizing without Christ our own spiritual of the lack
of ability to save ourselves our own our own inability to really do anything
spiritually. Being poor in spirit means I realize I am dependent upon Christ
for my needs spiritually. “Blessed are those who mourn.” Once I realized
my own spiritual poverty, then I've got to be willing to mourn. “Blessed are
those who mourn.” Are we talking about that Christians go around with the
gloomy look at or sad all the time? No, that's not the idea. But, we're
sorrowful for sin. We mourn. We lament, and we weep over sin. It brings us
to a point where we're ready to change our lives. Then once we realized
our own spiritual poverty, once we're ready to do mourn over and repent
and change our lives about sin, ‘blessed are the meek. They shall inherit
the earth.’ The idea of inheriting the earth found all way back to the Psalms
is to inherit the blessings of God- given to His people is the idea. To do
that, I've got to be meek. I've got to be humble. I've got a be submissive,
and I've got a be willing to submit my life unto God's hand so that He can
truly make me what He wants me to be.
Then as that faith begins, we see faith grow. Matthew 5:6 Jesus says
these words, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness
for they shall be filled.” Once I come to my senses to realize I need God. I
need to rid my life of sin. I need to be humble and submit to His will. I've got
to make it an aim to learn more about God and grow in Him. “Blessed,”
listen to these words, “blessed are those who hunger and thirst.” There's
that in insatiable desire to grow spiritually and to be what God wants me to
As a Christian you never stop growing. Peter would say ‘Grow in the
grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.’ That faith that is
growing is ultimately going to be perfected in the Beatitudes as well. Look
at Matthew 5:7. The Scripture says “Blessed are the merciful they shall
obtain mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart they shall see God. Blessed
are the peacemakers for they shall be called sons of God.” We have now
changing our character to mercy, to peacemakers, that to being sons of


God, to being the type of people who want to do good unto others, who
love God, and love others as the Scripture teaches. People whose lives are
filled with mercy, who want to bring the peace of God, to others, and that
that faith is now being perfected through the trials and the things that
Christians go through every day.
Then of course once that faith is started, begins to grow, it is being
perfected. You can be sure that faith is also going be tried. Listen to
Matthew 5:10-12 Jesus said, “Blessed are those who are persecuted for
righteousness sake for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you
when they revile and persecute you and say all kinds of evil against you
falsely for my sake rejoice and be exceedingly glad for great is your reward
in heaven. For so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”
Every child of God who's trying to grow, who's trying to submit to
God's will, and who's trying to really make his life what God wants it to be is
at times going to face persecution. How do we look at that? “Blessed are
those who are persecuted.” Hey, they did it to the prophets before you. It's
going to happen. Bible says in 2 Timothy 3:12 “All who desire to live godly
in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.” When with we realize persecution is
happening and what's going on- remember God said it was going to
happen. Remember that we are working toward and being prepared and
perfected to handle that and with God's help. Listen to Philippians 4:13.
Paul said, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”
As the child of God, we have everything we need to be what God
wants us to be.
Matthew 5:13-16 we see the Christians example. We've seen the
Christian characteristic, what we're to have the traits I'm to have in the
kingdom. Now we’ll also want to emphasize the example that the Christian
is going to be to those in the world.
Listen to Matthew 5:13-16. Jesus said, “You are the salt of the earth.
But if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It's then good for
nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men. You're the
light of the world. A city that's set on a hill cannot be hidden, nor do they
light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand and it gives light


to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men that they
may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven.”

As we think about the Christian example two really vivid illustrations
are used in and you can see these in your life as I can in mine. When's the
last time you ate something that was really, really bland? I'm talking about
didn't have any seasoning, didn't taste very good, tasted flat and bland, and
you thought, you know, ‘where is the salt?’ That'd be probably one of your
first thoughts. Well when we cook we want to put salt in it. It really
enhances the flavor. It brings it out. It's a preservative. Everything needs a
little bit of salt, and thus Christians are the salt of the world. They bring,
they enhance it. They bring flavor. They ought it ought to be attractive. It
ought to make want people want to see what Christianity is all about.
Then second, rather vivid illustrations, “You,” Jesus said, “are the
light of the world, a city that is set on a hill,” Jesus says, “can be seen by
everybody.” You know you imagine this illustration now, you think about the
irony of this- nobody lights a lamp and puts a basket on top. What good
would it do to turn on a flashlight and put a cup over the top of it? Well
that'd be crazy! Nobody'd do that! ‘You're the light of the world.’ Jesus point
is, ‘Let your light shine. Don't put it out. Don't put anything over the top of it.’
Be encouraged to be a Christian, and shine your light for Jesus Christ.
Thus this is why He will say in that memorable verse, “Let your light so
shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your
Father who is in heaven.” We see first of all the Christians traits- his
qualities, his characteristics.
We then see the Christian example. We direct our attention to
Matthew chapter 5, the conclusion of that chapter, verses 17 through 48,
where we see the Christians righteousness. The Bible identifies that that
righteousness ought to be exemplified in our life. We want we want to show
an example of how to live the right life. He'll mention the following things:
we've got Christians righteousness and anger. We're no longer going to
have the idea of an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth- rather we love
our enemies. We do well to those who are in need. We've got
righteousness and self-control.


You’ve heard of old it was said, ‘thou shall not commit adultery.’
Jesus says, ‘but I say to you whoever looks at a woman in essence is
already committed adultery with her.’ We've got the ideas of controlling
ourselves, ‘control your anger, control your desires,’ Jesus will say.
There are teachings about the Christians righteousness and divorce.
Listen to what Jesus says in Matthew 5:31-32. Jesus said, “Furthermore it
is been said whoever divorces his wife let him give her a certificate of
divorce. But I say to you, whoever divorces his wife for any reason except
sexual immorality fornication causes her to commit adultery, and whoever
marries a woman who is divorced commits adultery.” Christians are to
maintain a godly marriage. God intended according to Genesis 2:24, “For
this reason man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife.
The two shall become one flesh.” God intended for one man and one
woman to be married for life. That's God's original plan, and Christian
marriages ought to exemplify that.
Jesus identifies our righteousness as it relates to our speech and the
making oaths that people can't keep. You know the Jews were great about
making these promises. They'd swear by the temple. They'd swear by the
number of hairs on their head. Jesus said in essence, ‘cut out the swearing
and just let your yes be yes and your no be no.’ We're not living under the
age of retaliation. I'm not going to go looking to knock somebody's tooth out
if they knock mine out, or punch somebody in the eye or eye for an eye.
No, that's not the way we live. “Love your enemies,” Jesus will say in
Matthew 5:43-48, “Do good to them. Pray for them those who curse you
and spitefully use you.” Jesus will say, “Love your enemies. Be perfect
complete as your Father in heaven is also complete.” The Christians
righteousness is identified and contrasted with many of the commands of
the old covenant and even brought to a higher plain a newer and greater
level in Christianity.
Now in Matthew chapter 6, Jesus is now at going to identify the
Christian sincerity and to show how we're to be sincere in what we believe
and what we teach. We have sincerity in our giving. In Matthew chapter 6
you've got, you know, the idea of these people doing their charitable deeds.
They want to do their charitable deeds to be seen by men. Jesus said what
we're not to do charitable needs to be seen by others. We give to God, and


God knows the good that we've done. You've got sincerity in praying. You
know the Jesus contrast the Christian's prayer life with that of the religious
leaders of Jesus day. He said, you know, the religious that they want to
stand on the street corner. They want to pray the long prayers to be heard
by men. Jesus said, “You when you pray go in your inner closet on your
inner room there pray to God who sees in secret, and he will ultimately
hear and bless us.” It's not about ‘Hey look at me.’ This is the way the Jews
were. ‘Look at me look, what I'm giving look, how I'm praying.’ Matthew
6:16-18, look at the great fasting that we've done, how we are denying
ourselves. Their religion was a lot about them. Jesus over and over again
in the New Testament will identify them “Hypocrites!” He'll say, ‘Well did
Isaiah prophesy about you saying Matthew 23, he will identify them in a
very picturesque term.’ Jesus will say of the religious elite, ‘You're
whitewashed wall, beautiful ornate on the outside- whitewashed tombs
beautiful and ornate on the outside.’ Inside, Jesus will say, ‘you're full of
dead men's bones.’ They look pretty. Everybody looked to look up to them
and thought ‘Wow, look at these guys giving! Look at their look at their
praying, look at their fasting.
On the exterior they look like the perfect picture of what people think
religion is all about. What about on the inside? Rot, filth and immorality, and
ungodliness are what Jesus identified. Their hypocrisy did not at all please
God. When we give, pray, make dedication and commitment to God, God's
not concerned about me letting everybody else see that. That's not at all
what it's about. My sincerity and my commitment are between me and God.
It may be the case that sometimes people see you pray. It may be the case
that people see us giving. That's not what it's about though. We're not
doing our charitable deeds to be seen by men, we're doing those ultimately
to please God and to make sure that we're giving and worshiping as God
wants us to.
Now the rest of the chapter, Matthew 6:19-34 we see the Christians
priorities are here emphasized. We've got priorities and making sure where
our treasure is. Jesus said, “Where your treasure is there will your heart be
also. Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth where rust and moth
destroy, where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves
treasures in heaven.”


There's priority number one. Where's your treasure at? What things
are we really striving for in this life? What's our goal? What are we trying to
achieve? Is heaven the ultimate priority of every Christian? We've got
priorities in making sure that our vision is where it needs to be.
Look at what Jesus said in Matthew 6:22-23. Jesus mentions these
words “The lamp of the body is the eye. If therefore your eye is good, your
whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad, your whole body will
be full of darkness.” Here's the point. If the light that is in you is darkness,
how great is that darkness? Where's our vision? What is the source of light
this brought into our life and into our body?
“Christ is the light of the world,” John 8:12. Are we letting Him light
our path, Psalm 119:105? Are we letting Him be the light and the vision that
we have in this life?
Then he mentions another priority, and it's our priority and devotion.
What are we really devoted to in this life?
Look again at Matthew 6:24. “No one,” Jesus says, “can serve two
masters.” Why not? “Either he'll hate the one and love the other or he'll be
loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and
mammon or earthly riches.” What where's our devotion? What are we really
devoted to? Is it the job? Is that our recreation? Is it our family? Nothing
wrong with any of those things necessarily, but where's our real devotion?
Is it mammon, worldly riches and treasures, and things of this world that
perish with us? Or are we really devoted to God and to His cause?
Then a fourth priority and that is the Christian and not letting worry
rule his life. Trusting in God, seeking first the kingdom, Jesus in Matthew
6:25-34 will talk about life, and He'll talk about you know food and clothing
and shelter. He says in essence, and this is the real impact of what Jesus
is trying to say, He says “Is not life more than food? And the body more
than clothing”? What's His point all about? My life is not to be geared
around food. Sometimes we think from meal to meal to meal, what we're
going to wear today, what we're going to put on, what we're going to eat. ‘Is
not life more than food and the body more than clothing?’ That's Jesus
whole point.


If we're focused on spiritual things, Matthew 6:33 ‘seek first the
kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be
provided unto you,’ if I put God's kingdom first, if the kingdom and God is
my priority-everything else is going to fall in line. Doesn't mean I won't have
to work. Doesn't mean there might be times where I have to dig little
harder, work a little, you know dig a little deeper. Friend God's going to take
care of His children and make sure that they are provided for.
Now as we turn our attention in this great sermon to Matthew chapter
7, we now look at the Christian and judgment. Christians do have to make
judgments. Every day that I wake up and every day that you wake up, I've
got to make decisions. I've got to make moral decisions. I've got to make
decisions about life every day. The Christian is authorized to make
decisions and to make judgments. Jesus said in John 7:24 “Judge with a
righteous judgment.”
Now if there is one verse that a host of people, especially those who
don't like to be pointed out for moral things are morally against the
Scripture, know it's Matthew 7:1.
A lot of people quote it. ‘Judge not that you be not judged.’ What kind
of judgment is Jesus talking about? Wrong, hypocritical judgment. Listen to
Matthew 7:1 or verse number 2. Jesus says, “For with what judgment you
judge, you'll be judged. With what measure you see use it'll be measured
back to you.’ Now here's the illustration. “Why do you look at the spec or
the splinter in your brother's eye, but do not consider the plank in your own
eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me remove the speck or the
splinter from your eye and look a plank is in your own eye?’ Hypocrites!
First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to
remove the speck from your brother's eye.”
Jesus is not condemning all judging.
You've got to stand behind the word of God, and stand up for what's
right. And remember John 7:24? Jesus said “Judge.” How? “With righteous
judgment.” That's definitely not what's going on here. When you think about
the clarity of the illustration Jesus uses, here are two people. Okay one of


them has a splinter in his eye, the other one has a 2 x 4 coming out of his
eye. The one with the 2 x 4 says to the man who's got the splinter, ‘Come
over here let me get that little splinter out of your eye,’ when he's got this
massive 2 x 4 coming out of the side of his head. What's that all about?
These people, these hypocrites are living in a contrary to the will of
God. Their life is in complete disarray to the will of God. They want to
nitpick at the little splinter in this person over here, when their life is in
complete contradiction to the will of God. Jesus is discussing hypocritical
judging. God's going to make the right judgment according to His will.
Christians are to stand behind that. We're commanded to judge with
righteous judgment- which is judging according to the will of God.
Now friend, as you look in Matthew 7:13-27 the Christian also has
certain commitments that he is to stand behind and live up to. We have the
commitment to right and wrong. There is a right way; Jesus says the
majority of the people in this world are not going down that path. It is the
narrow, it is the difficult way that leads to eternal life and few there are
going down it. I have a commitment to strive to walk down the narrow path.
I have a commitment to follow the true teaching and teachers of the gospel.
There are many false sheep or many wolves out there who are trying to
bring God's people astray. They’re ‘wolves in sheep's clothing’ Jesus will
say. And ‘you will know them by their fruits.’
We have a commitment to both saying and being what God wants us
to be and a commitment to hearing and doing the will of God. I've got to
stand behind the commitment that we see in Scripture.
What do we learn in this masterful wonderful lesson in Matthew 5
through 7? We learn what's required to be a child of God. I've got to be
poor in spirit. I've got to realize without God I don't have anything. I am
spiritually bankrupt without God. Without Christ in my life, I've got to realize
the sorrow and the heartbreak that sin brings. “The soul who sins shall
surely die,” Ezekiel 18:4.I've got to have the humility, the meekness and the
submissiveness to say, ‘Lord what would you have me to do?’ Acts 9:6. I've
got to be willing to grow every day as a child of God. I've got to hunger and
thirst after righteousness, and I've got to strive to be what God wants me to
me to be merciful, to be kind, to be a peacemaker, to love other people,


and to realize along the way persecutions are going to come. God can help
me through those and others as well have faced them.
Friend we ask you today the greatest question of all, have you
become a member of the Lord's kingdom? Have you obeyed the voice of
our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ? Where is your treasure? ‘Where your
heart is there your treasure will be also.’
Are you seeking first God's kingdom? Are you on that narrow path
that leads to eternal life?
If not, we're urging you today- won't you become a child of God?
Believe Jesus is the Son of God and the Savior of the world.
Having believed that, make a commitment to change your life and
repent. “Unless you repent,” Peter said, “you'll all likewise perish,” Acts
3:19. Having repented, would you confess the beautiful name of Jesus
before men? Acts 8:36-38 ‘I believe that Jesus is the Christ the Son of the
living God.’
Would you, as Jesus said in John 3:5 “Be born of water and the spirit
that you may enter the kingdom of God.”?
If you've never obeyed the gospel, friend we're begging you to do that
There is no greater safer place in all the world than the kingdom of
Christ. If you're not in it, we beg you today- become a Christian, obey the
gospel, and get into the kingdom of Christ.


Study Questions for: “Matthew: Lesson 3”

1. According to Matthew 5:6, who shall be filled?

2. According to Matthew 5:7, who shall obtain mercy?

3. According to Matthew 5:7, who shall see God?

4. Who shall be called sons of God according to Matthew 5:7?

5. What does Matthew 5:10-12 say about those persecuted for

6. What does 2 Timothy 3:12 say of people who desire to live Godly?

7. According to Philippians 4:13, what can we do? How?

8. What does Matthew 5:31-32 tell us about marriage and divorce?

9. According to Matthew 5:43-48, how should we treat our enemies?

10. What does Matthew 6 say about where our treasure is?

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