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Matthew 5:3-12

Context

5:3 “Blessed 1  are the poor in spirit, 2  for the kingdom of heaven belongs 3  to them.

5:4 “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. 4 

5:5 “Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.

5:6 “Blessed are those who hunger 5  and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied.

5:7 “Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.

5:8 “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.

5:9 “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called the children 6  of God.

5:10 “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to them.

5:11 “Blessed are you when people 7  insult you and persecute you and say all kinds of evil things about you falsely 8  on account of me. 5:12 Rejoice and be glad because your reward is great in heaven, for they persecuted the prophets before you in the same way.

1 sn The term Blessed introduces the first of several beatitudes promising blessing to those whom God cares for. They serve as an invitation to come into the grace God offers.

2 sn The poor in spirit is a reference to the “pious poor” for whom God especially cares. See Ps 14:6; 22:24; 25:16; 34:6; 40:17; 69:29.

3 sn The present tense (belongs) here is significant. Jesus makes the kingdom and its blessings currently available. This phrase is unlike the others in the list with the possessive pronoun being emphasized.

4 sn The promise they will be comforted is the first of several “reversals” noted in these promises. The beatitudes and the reversals that accompany them serve in the sermon as an invitation to enter into God’s care, because one can know God cares for those who turn to him.

5 sn Those who hunger are people like the poor Jesus has already mentioned. The term has OT roots both in conjunction with the poor (Isa 32:6-7; 58:6-7, 9-10; Ezek 18:7, 16) or by itself (Ps 37:16-19; 107:9).

6 tn Grk “sons,” though traditionally English versions have taken this as a generic reference to both males and females, hence “children” (cf. KJV, NAB, NRSV, NLT).

7 tn Grk “when they insult you.” The third person pronoun (here implied in the verb ὀνειδίσωσιν [ojneidiswsin]) has no specific referent, but refers to people in general.

8 tc Although ψευδόμενοι (yeudomenoi, “bearing witness falsely”) could be a motivated reading, clarifying that the disciples are unjustly persecuted, its lack in only D it sys Tert does not help its case. Since the Western text is known for numerous free alterations, without corroborative evidence the shorter reading must be judged as secondary.



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