Sermon on the Mount Bible Story
The well-known Bible story of the Sermon on the Mount is recorded in the Bible book of Matthew 5-7. The Sermon on the Mount comes from when Jesus was just beginning his early ministry after being baptized by John and was traveling through Galilee. On a mountainside, not far from Capernaum, Jesus stopped to give his longest and most popular sermon, giving this event the name "Sermon on the Mount." Jesus' teachings in this message include what's known as the Lord's Prayer as well as the Beatitudes. The focus of the Sermon on the Mount was how to live a life pleasing to God and the characteristics of Christian discipleship.
This sermon was a revelation through Jesus to His people. It served as a radical wake-up call for Christians to live wholeheartedly for God through faith, not simply through external actions of keeping the law. Our Savior used this passage to teach us how to live with the Kingdom of God in mind. The Sermon on the Mount is not simply a list of rules to follow, it is an invitation to live under grace and experience blessings and rewards from a living Christ-like. Read the entire Bible Scripture passage for the Sermon on the Mount below.
Why did Jesus give the Sermon on the Mount?
In my mind's eye, I can see Jesus sitting on this hill with all these people surrounding him overlooking the sea of Galilee, and preaching his most famous sermon, the Sermon on the Mount. But at the heart of that sermon is an even more famous sermonette. It's a sermonette of the beatitudes. Almost every Christian, almost every culture in the world understand the beatitudes.
Blessed are thee or as you say in the southern United States, blessed are those who, but what does it actually mean? It's one thing to say, "Blessed are those who ..." in a ceremonial, sort of ritualistic, everybody knows it sense, but actually we all want to be blessed, right?
Actually, the word blessed could be translated from the Greek to the word happy. Jesus is saying, he's speaking to the universal language of every person that has ever lived on planet earth. He's answering a question that is as relevant today as it was 2,000 years ago. It's as relevant to the person in the corner office in New York City as it was relevant to the villager that stumbled upon that hill that day.
Jesus says, "Do you want to be happy? Well, here's how you can be happy. You will be blessed if ..." and that's what the beatitudes answer for us. How can we be happy?
Photo credit: Sermon on the Mount by Carl Bloch (1877)