Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Question: Why is “the kingdom of heaven” the immediate reward for those who are “poor in spirit”?
Answer: The meaning behind this Beatitude is that the person becomes aware, or knows, that he or she is “poor in spirit.” It is that awareness that brings the reward, because the person is now
ready to let God into their hearts and minds. Before, they may have been “rich” in materiality and possessions.
Jesus told his followers: “And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.” (Matthew 19)
Mrs. Eddy comments on this: “It is ‘easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle,’ than for sinful beliefs to enter the kingdom of heaven, eternal harmony. Through repentance, spiritual
baptism, and regeneration, mortals put off their material beliefs and false individuality.” (S&H 241)
We will learn more about repentance and baptism in lessons on the next Beatitude, but the above shows that being rich in sinful beliefs will keep us unaware of the kingdom of heaven at hand.
Mrs. Eddy sets this goal for us: “The grand necessity of existence is to gain the true idea of what constitutes the kingdom of heaven in man.” (S&H 560)
Practice: Today, ask God in prayer to help you see what wrong ways of thinking might be darkening your thoughts, and preventing you from seeing the kingdom of heaven at hand.
(Excerpted from “First Lessons in Christian Science, Volume Two: The Beatitudes” Copyright 2002)
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