Poor in Spirit (Through the Gospels)


“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” ^Matthew 5:3. (Click here to read entire passage)

Jesus goes up the mountain and preaches what it known as, “The Sermon on the Mount,” and explains what it looks like to live out the Kingdom of God. Jesus has just proclaimed that the Kingdom of God is at hand, and now goes up a mountain in Galilee to paint a picture of what it looks like to be apart of His Kingdom.

The first thing He says is, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” 

What does Jesus mean by this? There are two things to take notice here. First is that this person is blessed. What does Jesus mean by blessed? To be blessed is talking about an individual who has found favor with God and as a result is happy and blessed. This person is filled with happiness and joy because they know that they are favored by God.

But how does this person receive this favor and blessing? They must be poor in spirit. To be poor in spirit is not talking about a financial, economic, social status. No. Jesus is talking about the moral and spiritual bankruptcy of the human heart. The one who is poor in spirit is aware of their unworthiness and as a result has an utter dependence on God. The one who is poor in spirit acknowledges that apart from the grace of God they are nothing. This person knows that there is nothing that they can offer God that is of worth. Thus, they come to God completely dependent on Him. This person will receive mercy and grace from God. 

Are you poor in spirit? Do you know that there is truly nothing you can offer God that is of any value? Do you know that apart from His grace and mercy there is nothing that you can do? If your heart is in this posture, you will be blessed. You will be filled with gratitude and joy because you will find favor with God. When you come to God with desperation knowing that there is nothing you can do, God will favor you and bless you. 

William ChungComment