Heroes of the Faith

How happy are you who are poor: yours is the Kingdom of God"

Luke 6:20
Jeremiah 17:5-8; Psalm 1:1-4,6; I Corinthians 15:12,16-20; Luke 6:17,20-26

Some of you may be more familiar with the Beatitudes in the Gospel of Matthew than with those in Luke which we have read. Somehow, Matthew’s list of eight Beatitudes has received more popular exposure and commentary than Luke’s list of four. Most Bible experts agree that Luke’s is the more primitive version, somewhat different in emphasis than Matthew’s. Luke’s “Blest are you poor” refers directly to the materially impoverished. And his “Blest are you who hunger” refers directly to those who don’t have enough to eat. Matthew, on the other hand, in blessing the “poor in spirit” and “those who hunger for what is right,” has “spiritualized” Luke’s version. Yet the lessons of both versions are in basic harmony. We can think of the two versions as separate strings on the same violin, together producing a melodious chord.

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