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April 2, 2023
52m 50s

Persecuted for Righteousness’ Sake

by Dennis Rouse
Following Jesus is the best decision we could ever make, but it comes with a cost. When we live like Him, we will face persecution from our family, friends, and the rest of the world. Tune in to learn why we’re blessed even amid persecution and find encouragement to continue being the salt and light of the world!
Sermon Notes

The BEATITUDES are the express image of who Jesus is and how He thinks and functions in life.

The BEATITUDES build off one another in sequence.

The BEATITUDES are the power source behind the entire revelation of the Sermon on the Mount.

Everything in the BEATITUDES goes against our natural bent towards life.

Everything in the BEATITUDES describes the essential differences between a TRUE CHRISTIAN and a NON-CHRISTIAN.

The more like Him we become, the more we are unlike everybody who is not a Christian.

When a church is least like the world, it invariably attracts the attention of the world!

Matthew 5:1-9 NIV

Now when Jesus saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down.  His disciples came to him, and he began to teach them, saying:

Vs. 3: “Blessed are the POOR IN SPIRIT, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

Vs. 4: “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.”

Vs. 5: “BLESSED are the MEEK, for they will inherit the earth.”

Vs. 6: “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.”

Vs. 7: “Blessed are the MERCIFUL, for they will be shown mercy.”

Vs. 8: “Blessed are the PURE IN HEART, for they will see God.”

Vs. 9: “Blessed are the PEACEMAKERS, for they will be called children of God.”

Matthew 5:10-12 NIV

“Blessed are those who are PERSECUTED BECAUSE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS, FOR THEIRS IS THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN. Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”

Righteousness: being like Jesus

Persecuted for “BEING LIKE JESUS”

John 15:18-20 NIV

“If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. Remember what I told you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also.”

2 Timothy 3:12 NIV

In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted…

Matthew 10:34-39 NIV

“Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to turn ‘a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—a man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.’ Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves his son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me.  Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it.”

Luke 6:26 NIV

“Woe to you when everyone speaks well of you, for that is how their ancestors treated the false prophets.”

Important: When you become like Christ, initially, the world will hate you.

Matthew 5:10-12 NIV

“Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. REJOICE AND BE GLAD, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”

Matthew 5:13-16 NIV

“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.   Neither do people light a lamp and put in under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”

Philippians 2:5-8 NIV

In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very natureGod, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very natureof a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross!

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