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Blessed Are the Poor in Spirit

posted Jul 21, 2015, 10:24 AM by First Baptist


You probably heard what Donald Trump said last Saturday about John McCain. It’s been all over the news since then. In case you missed it, Mr. Trump said Mr. McCain wasn’t a war hero; that he (Trump) prefers soldiers who don’t get caught by the enemy.


Sally & I were just a few feet away when Mr. Trump said this. (For the record, many in the audience gasped at Mr. Trump’s statement and DID NOT give him a standing ovation at the end of his presentation.)


Of greater concern (at least for Mr. Trump) is another statement he made on Saturday. The interviewer asked him if he had ever asked God for forgiveness. Mr. Trump answered no. Despite this, he said he was very “religious” and he & God have a great relationship.


As part of my devotions, I’m re-reading My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers. The reading today concerned Jesus’ statement: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 5:3).


In commenting on this, Chambers’ writes:


“This [beatitude] is the first principle in the kingdom of God. The underlying foundation of Jesus Christ’s kingdom is poverty, not possessions; not making decisions for Jesus, but having such a sense of absolute futility that we finally admit, ‘Lord, I cannot even begin to do [what you command us to do.]’ Then Jesus says, ‘Blessed are you…’ This is the doorway to the kingdom, and yet it takes us so long to believe that we are actually poor! The knowledge of our own poverty is what brings us to the proper place where Jesus Christ accomplishes His work.”


I’m sure it’s extremely difficult for a billionaire to recognize their poverty, yet only those who do so will enter the kingdom of heaven. Jesus was very clear about this. In addition, the apostle John wrote in 1st John 1: “If we claim to be without sin [such that we need God’s forgiveness], we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.”


I found myself praying for Mr. Trump. After all, what good is it to gain the whole world (even the United States presidency), but lose one’s soul?


Pastor Dan