Blessed are they who Mourn!
Matthew 5:4 “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.”
To be blessed has nothing to do with happiness. To be blessed is to receive God’s grace. To be blessed transcends happiness, which is completely tied to our circumstances. The blessed are those who see everything that comes into their lives as coming from God. It is a blessing to come to the place where you realize you can’t make your way to Heaven through performance. It is a blessing for the fog to clear and to come to yourself like the prodigal son did in the mud pit.
Blessed are those who mourn: This is a hard saying. It falls strangely on our ears, we listen in bewilderment, while groping for some cryptic meaning. To mourn is to be moved with grief and sorrow. Those who mourn wail in sorrow with overflowing tears of grief. Those who mourn understand they have suffered a great loss. The poor in spirit mourn. It is a mistake to take this verse apart from the prior verse. The poor in spirit see themselves in the light of God and mourn because they understand the great loss sin has brought to their lives. If you don’t see your sin and sinning as something to mourn you are far from the blessings of the gospel. We only come to the place of mourning when we no longer make excuses for our sin, don’t minimize it, nor ignore it. Paul cried out, “What a wretched man I am!” You can’t come to Jesus until you see your sin for what it is and cry out because of it. The proud judge their faults against a false standard. Pride keeps us comparing our faults to what we see as the glaring errors of others. We don’t mourn because we don’t think it’s that big of a deal. We weigh our failures in a balance offset by our good points, or the fruitfulness of our service. It is grace that brings us to the place where we can mourn.
Blessed are those who mourn: Everything we know causes us to think that blessedness and mourning are antagonistic and hopelessly irreconcilable. There is no way to encounter God without mourning. If you have not mourned you have not truly encountered God. The world system avoids mourning at all cost. The world avoids mourning because it conflicts with the feel-good message and promise of prosperity. The philosophy of the world is, “Forget your troubles, turn your back on them, do everything you can not to face them, and when forced to face them blame someone else.” The whole of life in the world is the pursuit of pleasure and money. This is how you know if you’re living with a worldly point of view. In order to mourn you have to feel; to be sensitive. Those who refuse to allow the Lord to humble them may laugh now but they will mourn at the judgment. The promises of the world are false advertising. When the unbelieving world stands before God, who is holy in judgment, there will be no laughing – just the weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Blessed are those who mourn: The Lord speaks primarily to a spiritual mourning relating to our sin. All of the beatitudes have reference to a spiritual condition and a spiritual attitude. Mourning always precedes revival. There is no salvation without acknowledging our sin. There is no real awakening or revival until the Body of Christ mourns for its sin and how it distorts the image of God. We fail to reach the world because our own houses are not in order. Jesus will draw people to Himself when He is evident in our lives. We have to start with ourselves. Let God shine His light on your heart. Do you know Him? Do you have a clear sense of your sin and your need for a savior? Christians are you at the place where you are willing to mourn over your sin; over all the ways your life fails to reveal the character of God? Laughter is tied to happiness; mourning to joy. It is interesting that we have no record of Jesus laughing. We have record of his being very angry with religious people; we have record of His weeping over the spiritual condition of His people; we are told He experienced hunger and thirst but there is no record of laughter. If we mourned over our sin like we do the state of our finances we would live in a better world. Look to the destructiveness of your sin and, having repented, look to the destructiveness of the sin in the world. Remember you who follow Jesus; you have the only answer. An honest look at ourselves would not result in its high opinion. The result would be to think of ourselves as truly wretched, lacking, and failures with nothing truly good to boast of.
For they shall be comforted: Comfort comes to those who are aware of their sin and mourn it. There is comfort in deliverance from sin’s penalty. The Greek word is “parakaleo” and means to come along side. When we mourn over sin – ours and the world’s – God does not abandon us but comes along side. God comforts all who come mourning their sin. If you are without Jesus He will still receive you. The only attitude we can have about our sin though is to mourn it and be willing to repent; to change our mind about our sin and turn to Christ. When we turn to Him He will forgive us. The scripture says He removes our sin as far as the east is from the west; He remembers it no more. Come to Jesus and you’ll find comfort, forgiveness, wholeness, and acceptance. Let Him come along side you. We sparingly see the effects of our sin and the sins of the world and are apathetic because we don’t care. Get a renewed vision of God and let Him come along side you and make His comfort real to you. Then allow Him to live through you to make an eternal difference. If you will come mourning you’ll never be able to know the needs of the world and not care. He promises us more than a feeling; He gives us a person. He loves us so immensely that He never leaves us alone. Yes, our mourning is real and it is discomforting. However, when we are willing to mourn and be honest with God, ourselves, and others, He comforts us. He went to the cross so He could fully and completely deal with our sin and make His residence in us. Do you see this? He is with you at all times. He will never leave nor forsake you, and His one desire is to live through you to the glory of the Father.
You are loved!