January 29, 2017 — Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time
ZEP 2:3 – 3: 12-13; PS 146: 6-10; 1 COR 1: 26-31; MT 5: 1-12A
The Gospel Reading for today is what is popularly called the Sermon on the Mount. Many think it is the absolute epitome of Jesus’ teachings. To be sure it tells us how we are to live our lives, the attitudes we are to have. We must remember that those who were waiting and hoping for the Messiah expected a military leader, one who would lead them in battle against their oppressors.
In His Sermon on the Mount Jesus gives a more accurate perspective of Who He is. He begins what we call the Beatitudes (the word means “blessings”) with “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” In a sense we are all “poor in spirit.” Without the guidance and strength provided us by the Lord there is no way we can escape this poverty of spirit, of spirituality, if you will.
That is why we often say that living God-centered lives is at the very core of stewardship. Being a disciple of Christ translates into being a steward of our many gifts and blessings. Some scholars believe that Jesus may have given this sermon often during His ministry. Those who followed Jesus and became the earliest Christians, the first members of the Church, were fond of quoting and referring to what the Lord said on this occasion. As stated Jesus provides us with the secret of living a good life. If we rely on Him and follow Him, we will be blessed.