The study of the Book of Matthew chapter 5

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Bishop William Caractor

Bayonne, NJ

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#1
Aug 11, 2008
 

Judged:

1

Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:
I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.
Today, we study the Book of Matthew chapter 5.
5:1, 2 The opening verses on the Sermon on the Mount indicate that this message deals with the inner state of mind and heart that is the indispensable absolute of true Christian discipleship. It delineates the outward manifestations of character and conduct of true believers and genuine disciples. Thus, the life of the believer, described by Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount, is a life of grace and glory, which comes from God alone. To make this quality of life the product of man's human efforts (as does the liberal) is the height of overestimation of man's ability and underestimation of his depravity. To relegate this entire message, Jesus' longest recorded sermon, to a Jewish-only life-style, as do some dispensationalists, is to rob the church of her greatest statement of true Christian living. In the Sermon on the Mount Jesus states the spiritual character and quality of the kingdom He would establish, and the basic qualities of this kingdom are fulfilled in the church He would establish. Virtually every section of this message is repeated in substance elsewhere in the New Testament. Nothing here indicates that this message is to be limited in its application to the people of Israel only. Notice in the opening verse that his disciples had come to Jesus and he...taught them the following message.
5:3 Blessed means "happy." This a basic description of the believers' inner condition as a result of the work of God. These Beatitudes, like Psalm 1, do not show a man how to be saved, but rather describe the characteristics of one who has been saved. The poor in spirit are the opposite of the proud or haughty in spirit. They have been humbled by the grace of God and have acknowledged their sin and therefore their dependence upon God to save them. They will inherit the kingdom of heaven, Kingdom of heaven is a general designation of the dwelling place of the saved.
Bishop William Caractor

Bayonne, NJ

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Aug 11, 2008
 

Judged:

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5:4 Those that mourn...shall be comforted. The depth of the promise of these statements is almost inexhaustible. Those who mourn for sin shall be comforted in confession. Those who mourn for the human anguish of the lost shall be comforted by the compassion of God.

5:5 The meek...shall inherit the earth refers again to those who have been humbled before God and will not only inherit the blessedness of heaven, but also will ultimately share in the kingdom of God on earth. Here, in the opening statements of the Sermon on the Mount, is the balance between the physical and spiritual promise of the kingdom. The kingdom of which Jesus preached is both "in you" and is yet "to come."

5:6 These future possessors of the earth are its presently installed rightful heirs, and even now they hunger and thirst after righteousness. They experience a deep desire for personal righteousness, which in itself is a proof of their spiritual rebirth. Those who are poor and empty in their own spiritual poverty recognize the depth of their need, and they hunger and thirst for that which only God can give them. They shall be filled (Greek chortazo) refers to a complete satisfaction. The psalmist proclaimed: "He satisfieth the longing soul, and filleth the hungry soul with goodness" (107:9).

5:7 Those who are merciful...shall obtain mercy has reference to those who have been born again by the mercy of God. Because divine love has been extended to them, they have the work of the Holy Spirit in producing a mercy that defiles explanation by unregenerate men. Jesus Himself became the ultimate example of this when He cried from the cross, "Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do" (Luke 23:34).

5:8 Those who are truly saved shall see God. These are the pure in heart. Their lives have been transformed by the grace of God. They are not yet sinless but their position before God has been changed. They have the New Birth, saving faith, and holiness. The process of sanctification is ever conforming them to the image of Christ (Romans 8:29), which image consists in "righteousness and true holiness" (Ephesians 4:24).

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Kristen

Corpus Christi, TX

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#3
Apr 19, 2010
 
Thank you so much for this wonderful insight, I was taking this too literally.
sean

Lakewood, CA

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#4
Apr 6, 2011
 
This is good...
sean

Lakewood, CA

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#5
Apr 6, 2011
 
this is good
Bishop William Caractor

United States

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#6
Apr 13, 2011
 
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

"Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.

Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.

Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.

Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.

Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.

Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God

Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.

Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you." Matthew 5:3-12

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

United States

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#7
Apr 13, 2011
 
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

Today, we study the Book of Numbers chapter 21.

21:1-3 Israel vowed a vow unto the Lord, to utterly destroy their cities: The word translated "utterly destroy" (cherem) appears as "ban" or "devoted thing" elsewhere in the Old Testament in reference to whatever is devoted to the Lord, whether man, animal, or property. Here, and in many other instances, it refers to the cities that Israel was to destroy, especially in Joshua's day (Jericho, Joshua 6:21; Ai, Joshua 8:26; Makkedah, Joshua 10:28; Hazor, Joshua 11:11). In Deuteronomy 7:2-6 the reason for this manner of destruction is given: these cities would entice the Israelites to depart from the Lord.

21:4-9 Fiery serpents: Bronze serpents have been found at a variety of sites in the Near East: one interesting bronze serpent is from Timna. Only those who believed God and looked on the bronze serpent lived. The New Testament uses this incident as an illustration of Christ's vicarious death on the cross and of the necessity of personal faith for salvation (John 3:14, 15). Later the bronze snake played a large role in Israel's religious life, even until the days of Hezekiah (2 Kings 18:4), during which Israel fell back into the ancient pagan way of thinking, and worshiped the bronze snake as a bearer of life.

21:10-20 The book of the wars of the Lord: Apparently, this was a collection of war songs dealing with Israel's struggle for possession of Canaan (1 Samuel 18:17; 25:28). It had indeed been a long time since the people of God had sung a song of praise (Exodus 15).

21:21-30 The victory over Sihon is mentioned a number of times in the Old Testament (Numbers 32:33; Deuteronomy 1:4; 2:24-36; 3:2, 6; 4:46; 29:7; 31:4; Joshua 9:10; 12:2; Judges 11:19; Psalm 135:11; 136:19). It was Israel's first victory over an organized state. As such, it contained an unmistakable promise for the coming conquest of Canaan. The door was now open. Verse 25 is applied some three hundred years later by Jephthah in Judges 11:26 which, in addition to 1 Kings 6:1, provides a strong argument for the early date of the Exodus. Verse 27-30 contain the so-called song of Heshbon, justifying Israel's right to the land. Because Israel had defeated Sihon, the conqueror of Moab, Moab had no right to claim the land back from Israel (Judges 11:26).

21:31-35 This was another conquest that was both historically and symbolically significant to Israel. Deuteronomy 3:11 mentions Og as being one of the "giants" with his bed being 13 1/2 feet long and six feet wide.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

United States

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#8
Apr 14, 2011
 
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

"The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.

He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever." Psalm 23

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

United States

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#9
Apr 14, 2011
 
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

Today, we study the Book of Numbers chapter 22.

22:5 Balaam, in the original form of the name, likely meant "The [Divine] Uncle Brings Forth." Yet, as the word is transcribed in the Hebrew text, it receives the Hebrew connotation of "Devourer of the People."

On first reading, Balaam appears to be portrayed in a positive light, and is thus often persecuted as a "saint" out of God's perfect will. But other passages of Scripture paint Balaam in a very different light, portraying him as an opponent of Israel who would've cursed Israel had not a sovereign God intervened and as a man who preferred money to serving God. In 2 Peter 2:1, 15, he is in the context of false prophets, "which have forsaken the right way, and are gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Bosor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness." Jude describes the "error" of Balaam (thinking he might be able to curse those whom God had not cursed) and connects it with "reward," in the context again of those who had "crept in unawares...ungodly men" (verse 4). Revelation 2:14 refers to the "doctrine of Balaam." After the formal encounter with Israel, he then counseled the women of Baal-peor to invite the men of Israel to their religious orgies and "to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication." He did this for no pay and was killed by the Israelites (Numbers 31:8). Deuteronomy 23:5 indicates that God actually changed Balaam's words as they came out of his mouth, for it says, "Nevertheless the Lord thy God would not hearken unto Balaam; but the Lord thy God turned the curse into a blessing unto thee, because the Lord thy God loved thee." Actually, the deeds of Balaam, which many commentators construe so positively, might just have a more sinister meaning, especially in the light of the New Testament verses and their contexts.

The constant mention of money matters suggests that Balaam's apparent indifference was really an oblique demand for a huge fee, as Ephron the Hittite was doing (Genesis 23:11-15). Also the repeated statements that Balaam would declare only the word that God put in his mouth may have been intended to emphasize the inspiration of his oracles rather than the holiness of his character. Balaam was offered "rewards of divination" (verse 7) and resorted to "enchantments" (24:1), abominable practices that were not permitted in Israel (23:23; Deuteronomy 18:10; 1 Samuel 15:23; 2 Kings 17:17).

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor

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