Body and Blood of Christ

Matthew 5:1-12


When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain; and after he sat down, his disciples came to him. Then he began to speak, and taught them, saying: "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. "Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.  "Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.”Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy.  "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.”Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. "Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

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The Beatitudes. [Mt 5:3-121]



ur gospels have two, notably different, versions of the beatitudes: Mt 5:3-12 and Lk 6:20-23. Matthew has nine beatitudes, where Luke has four, with four corresponding 'woes' (Lk. 6:24-26). Matthew's beatitudes, as a whole, carry distinctive features. The expression 'poor in spirit' points to a transformation of the idea of 'the poor'- the literally poor. In current usage the designation 'poor in spirit' applies to one who is detached from worldly goods. For Matthew the meaning is 'humility': the poor in spirit are the humble. The parallel beatitude of 'the meek' confirms this meaning. These beatitudes, in Matthew, are no longer addressed to those who lack the necessities of life but to those characterised by their meekness, their patience, their humility. It is evident that 'blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness' is very different from Jesus' blessedness of the 'poor' and the 'hungry' echoed in Luke. Matthew has broadened the scope of the beatitudes.

'Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God, 'in heart' like 'in spirit' points to an interior disposition. What is in question is what we would call 'purity of intention,' demanding perfect correspondence between intention and deed. 'Pure in heart' characterises people of integrity. The beatitudes of the merciful and the peacemakers are concerned with action: the conduct of a Christian towards a neighbour who stands in need. To seek to reconcile the estranged, to restore them to peace, is one of the kindest services one can render to the neighbour.

Wilfrid Harrington



Quill Pen


This is the Story of Jesus drawn from the four Evangelists



Church of the Beatitudes

Unfolding the Story of jesus

Gospel passages accompanied by a number of brief commentaries

Unfolding the story of jesus