Sunday Reflection: (Matthew Henry) This passage is a sermon; a famous sermon; the sermon upon the mount. It is a practical discourse;—the things to be believed and the things to be done. It was meant to guide and regulate our practice. Jesus proposes blessedness as the end, and gives us the character of those who are entitled to blessedness. Jesus prescribes duty as the way, and gives us standing rules of that duty. Jesus directs his disciples, 1. To understand what they are—the salt of the earth, and the lights of the world, verses 13-16. 2. To understand what they have to do—they are to be governed by the moral law.
Christ begins his sermon with blessings, for ‘Jesus came into the world to bless us’ (Acts 3.26). He came not only to purchase blessings for us, but to pour out and pronounce blessings on us. This sermon was designed to invite souls to Christ, and to make way for his law into their hearts. Christ’s pronouncing these blessings, not at the end of his sermon, to dismiss the people, but at the beginning of it, to prepare them for what he had further to say to them. The scope of the divine revelation is to let us know what God expects from us, and what we may then expect from him; and no where is this more fully set forth in a few words than here, nor with a more exact reference to each other; and this is that gospel which we are required to believe; for what is faith but a conformity to these characters, and a dependence upon these promises? The way to happiness is here opened, and made a highway (Isa. 25.8); and this coming from the mouth of Jesus Christ, it is intimated that from him, and by him, we are to receive both the seed and the fruit, both the grace required, and the glory promised.
Rector’s Corner: We are now collecting the annual reports of the Parish Leadership Body and Various Ministry Group. I will be grateful to receive suggestions with regards to our Parish Mission and Ministry Development Initiative. This is an area that I hope we could have a conversation during our Annual Vestry Meeting (A.G.M.).
Have you had the opportunity to invite someone you already know to be part of St. Michael’s Anglican Community? What could be one ministry in our parish that you are proud of? Would you share this ministry to the person you would be inviting? What could be a challenge for you in making that invitation? I would love to hear your reflection on these questions.