Notes for The Sermon
On Sunday, I’ll be reciting the Sermon on the Mount by heart with the help of a few friends at FBC. To help you prepare to hear the Sermon, here are five things to know.
- The Sermon isn’t everything Jesus taught, but these are the main things. The Gospel of Matthew is structured around five speeches. This is the first one, and it’s the best summary we have of Jesus’ main teachings.
- The main point of the sermon is the conduct of disciples. How do we “live sent” when we’re on mission. We live by a higher standard, and our choices begin in the heart. To explain it he gives us a vision of the “blessed life” and a way to view our lives—loyal to God alone.
- The message was heard first, then read. We take for granted that we can read the text silently, compare versions, and even study the Bible on our own. This text was read in the early churches. There are places for noise and laughter. We’re going to listen to the word as it might have been performed in the early church, and if you think something is humorous, feel free to laugh.
- Jesus shared this with disciples, but the crowds overheard. This message is for his disciples and for us today. The message is a script for our eventual obedience that we will perform one day in heaven. Start practicing your part now by living this way. By showing the world a different way to live, we are also inviting them to follow now.
- Take the word to heart. You don’t have to memorize something verbatim in order to understand it. Take it to heart, and repeat the message in your own words. I’ll be sharing some of my interpretations of the message Sunday, drawing from Greek, NRSV, and NIV versions.
Anyone who has ears to hear, let him hear.