The aim of this passage is to cause us to learn the hope that we have in our walk as disciples of Jesus Christ and how we are to live.
The disciples of Jesus Christ would receive great reward for their faithfulness (Mat 5:1-12)
As followers of Jesus Christ, we are assured of great reward.
Jesus retreated from the crowds to a mountain and his disciples followed Him. There began by telling them to rejoice and be glad in their call to discipleship. He taught them that they should be child-like in humility because they would be rewarded with the kingdom of heaven. They would be afflicted and mourn but they would receive comfort. They were to be gentle and not violent because later they would get possession of the earth. They were to earnestly desire and seek for righteousness and they would receive it. They were to show mercy and forgive other so that they themselves would be forgiven. They were to be sanctified because that was the only way to see God. In their seeking peace with others, they would be known as children of God. They would be persecuted for the pursuit of and living a righteous life. They were to rejoice and be glad when they receive insults and are persecuted for believing in Him because the prophets faced the same treatment and they would receive great rewards in heaven.
Mark 10:29-30 Jesus said, “Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and for the gospel, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life.
John 16:20-22 Truly, truly, I say to you, you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice. You will be sorrowful, but your sorrow will turn into joy. When a woman is giving birth, she has sorrow because her hour has come, but when she has delivered the baby, she no longer remembers the anguish, for joy that a human being has been born into the world. So also you have sorrow now, but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you.
John 16:33 I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.
How does this passage encourage you?
The disciples of Jesus Christ were to be like salt and light in the world (Mat 5:13-16)
A Christian’s faith is not a private thing. It needs to be evident in his/her environment.
These characteristics and experiences were not to be played out in secret though. Like salt, Jesus said that His disciples were to be a purifying influence on the earth. They would be their purpose in the world. They were to be like light to the world and therefore on display for everyone to see and when the world would see their good works, they would give glory to their Father who was in heaven.
Isaiah 60:1-3 Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD has risen upon you. For behold, darkness shall cover the earth, and thick darkness the peoples; but the LORD will arise upon you, and his glory will be seen upon you. And nations shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising.
How have you tried to be righteous privately? How can you change?