So, I’m back! I’ve been under house arrest for the past couple weeks with my sick companion, which allowed lots of time for study and learning so I’m excited to be able to share it with you again 🙂 I especially loved watching some Truman Madsen lectures, and learning his insights on The Sermon on the Mount. He referenced the verses before the Beatitudes in the Book of Mormon that shed light on all of our Savior’s other statements:
Blessed are ye if ye shall give heed unto the words of these twelve whom I have chosenfrom among you to minister unto you, and to be your servants; and unto them I have given power that they may baptize you with water; and after that ye are baptized with water, behold, I will baptize you with fire and with the Holy Ghost; therefore blessed are ye if ye shall believe in me and be baptized, after that ye have seen me and know that I am. 2 And again, more blessed are they who shall believe in your words because that ye shall testify that ye have seen me, and that ye know that I am. Yea, blessed are they who shall believe in your words, and come down into the depths of humility and be baptized, for they shall be visited with fire and with the Holy Ghost, and shall receive a remission of their sins.
He talks about how these verses shed light on all of the statements that follow when Christ says, blessed are the poor in spirit, meek, those that mourn, etc. They have to do with coming to Christ by repentance, baptism, and receiving the Holy Ghost, and THEN come the blessed attributes, otherwise known as the Beatitudes. Now the fact is, that these attributes turn out not to be separate virtues that one can aspire to in his life, they are the outcomes , or the fruits, of planting ones roots in Christ. So in sequence, they describe what comes to one who receives Christ in this way.
So the lesson I learned, again, is that Christ comes FIRST! Before anything else! If we can truly learn to put our Savior first, we will not want for anything.