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Sermon on the Mount - Introduction
“When Jesus saw the crowds, He went up on the mountain; and after He sat down, His disciples came to Him. He opened His mouth and began to teach them, saying,”
Matthew 5:1-2 NASB1995
As I have done more and more research and digging into key Bible themes like the Armor of God and the “I AM” statements for “Heaven on Wheels”, I am finding so many little nuggets of information and beauty that I never gleaned in all the years of Bible reading. So now, anticipating a LONG series of devotionals focused at key verses or a single verse, I am going to explore the epic Sermon on the Mount, which spans three chapters in the Gospel of Matthew (Matthew 5-7). I hope we all learn from this template for how to live our lives from over 2,000 words from the Savior captured on that day.
The context of the first two verses tell us that Jesus saw the multitudes who were following Him and He had compassion on them. This is early in His ministry, not long after His baptism and the 40 days in the wilderness rejecting the temptations of the Devil. But He is already making an impact. Jesus has been preaching, calling disciples, and healing the sick. As the large crowd presses in, He walks to the top of a mountain (thought to be above the Sea of Galilee in Israel - the picture today is one we took of the Catholic Church of the Beatitudes, which was built on the likely spot), Jesus sits down (typical for a teaching rabbi) and He begins to speak. I will draw on commentaries and other resources to help fill out the picture as the Sermon develops.
Next devotional: Blessed are the poor in Spirit (Matthew 5:3).
Photo Credit: Steve and Barb Sande, Church of the Beatitudes, Galilee, Israel