Sermon on the Mount

This week we are looking at a Chapter 5 of the Gospel of Matthew—the start of the ‘The Sermon of the Mount’. It is best understood that these stories/sayings that make up Chapters 5-7 of Matthew’s Gospel are a collection of short moments that Jesus shared. In the Gospel of Luke they are given the title ‘The Sermon on the Plain’ (Luke 6:20-49). Both the ‘Mount’ and the ‘Plain’ were places that signified an area where the community would gather and listen to important teachings that concern the whole community – it would be much like if we wrote ‘Sermon from the Pulpit’ today and the whole community attended. 

The Sermon from the Pulpit today will be looking specifically at The Beatitudes and the story of Salt and Light. So often we look at these as separate pieces, but all the stories found in Chapters 5-7 of Matthew are specifically woven together to share about how we relate to God and live this out with one another. The Beatitudes bring us to ponder about our inner state of being and how we view our life within the larger world. It is no wonder it sits next to the metaphorical imagery of Salt and Light. It brings us to be able to question whether our inner world recognises the graces of God in order that we can be a light to help others see the grace of God within their life. Are we enhancing ones understanding of life, how salt does for food, to come to know God more and more? Ranko Stefanovic writes that if the church, as the body of believers, loses its saltiness and its light, it has lost the reason for its existence.

As we bless the kids heading of to school this coming week, and bless the missional and outreach groups that our community runs throughout each year, may we also remember that we have been abundantly blessed by the grace of God. May we not lose the reason of our existence, and may we ask ourselves how we are to be the light and salt within our schools, community groups, work places, kinders, care agencies, retirement homes and wider ‘beena community.

Ps Kelly Skilton

 

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