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  • Writer's pictureRev. Dr. Jesse G. Mabanglo

What are the practical implications of Jesus' teachings in the Sermon on the Mount?

When you think of the word “counterculture,” what images pop into your mind? I suspect that many of you will think of the time in the 1960s and early 1970s, in which there was an upheaval in our social and political norms. The counterculture movement was a broad-ranging movement in the United States, Canada, and Western Europe that rejected conventional mores and traditional authorities and whose members variously advocated peace, love, social justice, and revolution.*

You may be surprised to know that this counterculture movement had already been introduced over two thousand years ago. It was introduced by Jesus of Nazareth at the beginning of his preaching ministry when he taught on a mountainside (Matthew 5: 1) to a crowd of day laborers, poor farmers, and people on the margins. The writing team of The BibleProject has described his sermon in this way:

Jesus delivered this sermon 2,000 years ago, and the implications of these words are still shockingly relevant and meaningful. Emphasizing humility, forgiveness, and generous care for our neighbors, Jesus encourages people to choose God’s way of love, which will eventually renew all of creation. He calls this restored world God’s Kingdom. This is a realm in which Heaven and Earth are inseparably combined, a place where life flourishes and is free from injustice, suffering, and death. [This] sermon contains some of the most rigorous ethical demands in the Bible. It has wild ideas like “blessed are the peacemakers,” “love your enemies,” and “pray for people who persecute you.” **

For our next sermon series, we are going to unpack what is now known as the Sermon on the Mount. As we drill down into these passages in the Gospel of Matthew, we will discover for ourselves the meaning and implications of what Jesus was saying. Starting on Sunday, May 12th, I will also be teaching a class on this subject at 8:30 a.m. in Classroom 7 at the church. I invite you to join us as we explore these radical teachings of Jesus.

Warmly in Christ,

Pastor Jesse


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