As we begin this blog together. We will and must answer a question. And that question is, who are they? And the they spoken of in scripture can be many or few, which is solely based on a select criteria or lack thereof. That has been set in place by God, not only for our own benefit, but for the benefit of our fellow man as well. God did from the beginning, and still does now, have a well executed plan in place for mankind. Which is both to live a good life, and to make heaven his or her home, when this life is done. This, in spite of mankind’s best efforts, to continually mess things up. And if your one of those who says to yourself, if only Jesus would come and visit with me in the flesh, my life would be so much better. Well, he already did that, and some of the results were and still are shocking. And now let’s get to the point, which is in fact,who are they?
After the resurrection, Christ came walking through the wall into a locked room. A room where the apostles were gathered, contemplating all of the events that had happened. As you could imagine…they were both shocked and frightened, and anything else you can think of, having a spirit man walk through the wall into your presence. But as they gained their collective composure, Jesus having consoled them, Thomas did not believe it was Jesus. Jesus then asks Thomas to come over to him. And he asks him to place his fingers into the wounds in his hands and his side. So at this time Christ was in a body that had substance, but could go through a structure. After Thomas did as Christ had asked, and was now satisfied that it was in fact Jesus. Jesus said the following. Blessed are they who believe and have not seen. And so for starters, if one believes in Christ having not seen him, that individual is one of “they” who are blessed.
I have been saying for years, that the greatest blessing one can have in this life, is the ability to say yes and I believe, to the call of Jesus Christ. Because in the end, no matter what this life doles out to you, you will find yourself in heaven with me and the rest of the saints. And in the book of Matthew chapter 5, beginning in verse 3. We hear through the word of God,Christ’s teaching to a multitude of hearers, of what it is and who it is that is truly blessed. Follow along with me.
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 they who hunger and thirst after 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 the children of God. Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you, when men shall revile you, and speak all manner of evil falsely against you for my namesake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward. For so did they persecute the prophets who have come before you.
Having read this with me. If you were to ask, let’s just say 10 or 12 random people on the streets of New York, the following question. What does it mean to be blessed? You would likely hear the same things that I hear at work. To be blessed usually means to the unsaved, more of this world, and the things of this world. And then there are my Pentecostal friends. Who think that they and their individual congregations and pastors, have obtained the only true lock and key to going to heaven. And that every other protestant, Pentecostal, and in particular Catholic church goer. Is some how completely lost, having given their soul to the devil. In their minds, they and only they, are truly blessed. I am amazed, when I tell people about the gospel. I usually begin by telling them something about myself, and see what kind of door opens up. To me this is always the best type of evangelization. Because people have a tough time rebutting what you say of yourself and your life. And it can generally lead into some fairly open and honest conversations. This is the time to speak openly of Jesus, and what he is and has done in your life.
Then its up to the Holy Spirit, to get to work in that individuals heart and mind. When protestants hear me talking about Jesus. I always mention to them that I am a Catholic. And why? Because I know it bothers them to no end. For they think in and of themselves immediately, that I am somehow grossly mislead, because their pastor told them so. That somehow this church of mine, which had its roots in the very apostles themselves, predating the very word protestant by some 1500 years. And they know nothing about my background, of reading the scriptures, street evangelizing, praying, and everything else.
Think that I have somehow lost my way, and that I just start talking about Jesus, having no real knowledge about him. And the truth that they and their pastors somehow possess all of the truth, God having overlooked the rest of humanity. All of these things are a far cry from what Christ just spoke of. Meekness, poverty, and having a hunger for righteousness. Persecution, peacemaking, being reviled, and persecuted. And so where is it exactly that you fit in having read this little dissertation of mine? Are you blessed? Or are you just wanting? Wanting more of this world and what it has to offer. I will leave you with this. For those who believe. No proof is needed. And for those who don’t believe. No proof will suffice. Which one are you?…To be continued