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'Blessings to those who are meek'

글쓴이 : 관리자 날짜 : 2017-08-29 (화) 07:42 조회 : 81
Rev._Jang\'s_Sermon_on_August_27,__2017.docx (20.1K), Down : 0, 2017-09-11 20:02:09
설교일 : 2017.08.27.
설교자 : Rev. Jang
본문말씀 : Matthew 5:5

August 27, 2017

 

‘Blessings to those who are meek’

Matthew 5:5

 

Rev. Chan Young Jang’s Sermon at the KUMC of Metro Detroit

 

 

1.

Whenever we have visitors from Korea, either pastors or lay members, they are invariably impressed with the size of our church site. We have been so used to the big land that we don’t even notice, but to them it is impressive. While preparing this week’s sermon, I happen to think that today’s passage about inheriting the land will be especially favored by the Koreans, who are crowded in a small land and keenly interested in making money in the real estate business.

 

I am afraid you are a little bit disappointed that the condition for us to inherit the land is to be meek. Generally we do not aspire to be meek. In the dictionary, being meek is defined as being gentle, patient and humble, but it also says a meek person is submissive and easily imposed on by others. Therefore, we are not convinced about the meek inheriting the earth.

 

Rev. Tim Keller, the pastor of Redeemer Church in Manhattan, New York, wrote about the reasons why the Word of God is not applied to our daily life in his recent book, ‘Counterfeit Gods’. He challenges his young and successful congregation that they will not attain the true happiness God has reserved for them, unless they get rid of their idols, which are counterfeit gods.

 

“If we want to get out of despair and go forward, we have to recognize the idols in our minds and culture. But that is not enough. The only way we can get out of the influence of evil is to return to the true God. Our living God revealed himself on Sinai Mountain and on the Cross. When you meet Him, you will be forgiven of your sins and He is the only one that can do it. The counterfeit gods of yours will surely betray you. No legendary success, affluence, or lavish consumption will save you from the hungry needs of your soul. Unless you replace the idols in your life with the true God, you will never be fulfilled.”

 

What we want from today’s worship and sermon is not to pay attention to the ‘counterfeit gods’, but to discern the will of the true God toward us and apply God’s will to our lives so that we will be comforted by Him.  

 

 

2.

Let us do some research on the background of ‘the meek inheriting the land’. Most Bible scholars agree that the motif for today’s passage came from Psalm 37, and what Lord Jesus said was the reaffirmation of God’s Word in the Old Testament.

 

Psalm 37 is the message of hope and restoration for those who were oppressed and victimized by the wicked, to encourage them to be patient and wait for the justice of the LORD, and it says that they will be blessed by God to inherit the land.

 

Psalm 37:7-8  “Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for Him; do not fret when men succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes. Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret – it leads only to evil.”

 

Psalm 37:9  “For evil men will be cut off, but those who hope in the LORD will inherit the land.”

 

Psalm 37:11  “But the meek will inherit the land and enjoy great peace.”

 

The word Lord Jesus used to describe the meek was ‘Praus’in Greek and this word is derived from the Hebrew word ‘Anaw’ which means suffering, being submissive, and lowering himself. Therefore, the meek which Jesus was talking about is a person who is ‘humbly waiting in the midst of hardships and suffering’.

 

After meditating on Jesus’ words in today’s passage and the Word of God in Psalm 37, we are reminded of the Law concerning the possession of the land in the Old Testament.

 

The core principle of the Law for the Israelites about the land was that ‘the land belongs to God’.

 

Leviticus 25:23b  “Because the land is mine and you are but aliens and my tenants.”

 

Additionally, God specified the conditions for the Jubilee year that on the 50thyear the Israelites were expected to give up the use of their land. With this condition God allowed the distribution of the land to the Israelites excepting the Levi tribe. But in reality, as time went on and after facing so many wars and conflicts, the Israelites began to forget the Word of God concerning the land and those with the power and money bought the land from the less fortunate and robbed them of livelihood.

 

Lord Jesus was talking about ‘the meek’ under these circumstances. We can imagine the reactions of his audience; “Lord Jesus doesn’t know anything about the real world. He is just so naïve. He sounds nice, but doesn’t realize how harsh the world really is.” Our reactions in today’s world are not that different.

 

At the time of Lord Jesus’ ministry, there were a lot of land dealings by the rich and powerful, and consequently there were many who suffered from the loss of their land. We know that this problem was not exclusive in Israel, but a universal problem at that dark period in history. Apostle Paul described the coming of Jesus at the right time as follows.

 

Galatians 4:4  “But when the time had fully come, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under law.”

 

Lord Jesus, the Messiah, came at the right time and talked about the blessings for the meek when the rich and powerful were oppressing them, and His message is really appropriate for us who live in today’s world when the gap between the haves and have-nots is the widest in history.

 

 

3.

After meditating upon the historical background and the society at the time of Jesus, we realize that Lord Jesus’s message about the meek had two meanings.

 

The first meaning of the message is about ‘timing’. The meek are those who wait for God’s time, even though they are oppressed and suffering from the loss of their land. In the latter part of Psalm 37, we see that the meek are those who accept the sovereignty of God and wait for His time.

 

Psalm 37:13  “But the LORD laughs at the wicked, for He knows their day is coming.”

 

Psalm 37:18  “The days of the blameless are known to the LORD, and their inheritance will endure forever.”

 

Of course it is not easy for any of us to wait for God’s time. Even Lord Jesus, before His first miracle, said the following.

 

John 2:4  “Dear woman, why do you involve me?” Jesus replied. “My time has not yet come.”

 

When Lord Jesus described the end times later in Matthew chapter 25, He said it would be like ‘ten virgins going out to meet the bridegroom’.

 

Matthew 25: 1-5  “At that time the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom… The bridegroom was a long time in coming, and they all became drowsy and fell asleep.”

 

The bride’s waiting ends when she meets the bridegroom. With purity, she waits only for the arrival of the groom hoping to experience the freedom from fear, suffering, misunderstanding, and public scrutiny, and to enjoy the true liberty and peace in the groom, and this is also the heart of ‘the meek’.

 

Therefore, while waiting for the groom, two things are necessary for those who wait; the trust in the coming of the bridegroom and the giving up of self as the bride.

 

Therefore, the second meaning of the message is the renouncing of one’s self-rights. Without giving up her rights as the bride, she would not be able to accept the rights of the bridegroom over her.

 

All the conflicts within the family, between parents and children, husbands and wives, and among brothers, have originated from one member’s fight for his or her rights under the pretext of ‘love’. Sometimes, these conflicts between family members end up in the court as civil or criminal suits. It is the same with the churches, the body of Christ. The biggest expenditure of church foundations is known to be the court expenses related to ‘the suits within the church’. Each side is fighting for their rights and they rarely give up their rights, so even after the suits are settled, quite often both sides remain as enemies.

 

We have to admit that this second meaning of ‘being meek’, giving up one’s rights, is very difficult to accept, especially for those who are in the midst of conflicts fighting for their rights. Those who have their rights robbed or taken away will find it easy to accept Lord Jesus’ message in today’s sermon.

 

The most common cause of the civil or criminal suits in Jesus’ time was the conflicts involving the distribution of land or possessions. The Israelites even had the law established while they were roaming in the wilderness in anticipation of their future land possessions in the Promised Land of Canaan. Now Lord Jesus is saying that the meek who have given up their rights and consequently do not own any land will be blessed. He means that all human beings are essentially without any rights while on earth and that they live in ‘deficiency and chaos’.

 

Then, how are they going to be blessed? How are they going to accept the Lord’s message? Because those without any rights are constantly looking toward heaven, they find it easier to accept the message, compared to those who have possessions and rights, or those who work their hardest to get hold of possessions and rights.

 

The meek have been waiting for a long time and they even had to give up their rights, and now they are going to experience the inheriting of the land by the grace of God.

 

When will this happen? This will happen when the grace of God, the grace of the Cross of Jesus Christ, come upon us, after we realize that ‘our rights’ mean nothing to us and then we confess to the Lord that He is the only master of all of our rights.

 

In the future when we stand before the Lord after our life on earth is over, we will plainly see how absurd our desperate fights for our rights have been, shown under the glorious light of the Lord.

 

The Bible scholar, Prof. Glen Taylor of Wycliffe College, University of Toronto, once explained today’s passage as follows.

 

“We have to understand ‘Blessed are the meek’ of the Beatitudes as “Blessed are those who give up their rights, for they will reach the land of God.”

 

 

4.

‘The land’ in today’s passage which Lord Jesus used was derived from the Hebrew word ‘Ele-ch’ and it means more of ‘the land in the kingdom of heaven’ than ‘the land on earth’. The same word was used for ‘a place’ when Jesus was comforting His disciples.

 

John 14:2b  “I am going there to prepare a place for you.”

 

What He meant was not a real place, but the symbolic ‘eternal life’. We have been told about this by the LORD in Psalm 37.

 

Psalm 37:9  “For evil men will be cut off, but those who hope in the LORD will inherit the land.”

 

In real life, we may be suffering the loss of our land, but if we wait patiently for God’s time without curses or complaints, after giving up our rights, we will be blessed eternally.

 

Psalm 37: 25  “I was young and now I am old, yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken or their children begging.”

 

The blessing from God is transferred to the children as the inheritance for the meek who behave as follows.

 

Psalm 37:26  “They are always generous and lend freely.”

 

Those who are generous and lend freely to others are not always rich. Even if they are poor, and mournful, they can still be generous, if they are waiting for God’s time and have given up their rights. What an amazing blessing!

 

Do you think living this life is impossible? You don’t have to go far to find this person. Lord Jesus lived this life. Having given up all His rights willingly, He lived the life of a meek person during His ministry on earth, following only the will of God.

 

Hebrews 12:2  “Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

 

Lord Jesus lived the most beautiful and precious life with the heart of a meek person. And then, dying on the cross, He completed His life on earth as pure as a bride. God raised Him up and let Him ‘inherit’ the glorious honor of sitting at the right hand of God’s throne in His kingdom. Having given up their rights with the heart of God, the meek will wait for God’s time. And he will be blessed with the eternal life and his children will experience the continued blessings.

 

The closing hymn will be; ‘The poor in spirit…’  

 

 

 

[이 게시물은 관리자님에 의해 2017-09-11 20:01:40 읽는말씀(English&Korean)에서 이동 됨] [이 게시물은 관리자님에 의해 2017-09-11 20:05:46 읽는말씀(English&Korean)에서 이동 됨]

   

총 게시물 417건, 최근 0 건
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 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  다음  맨끝

제목 : 'Only for the Lord'
설교일 : 2017.11.05.
본문말씀 : Romans 14:6-9
설교자 : Rev. Lee

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