The Prince and the Pauper

Matthew 5:3 – “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

A few weeks ago I watched a modern remake of The Prince and the Pauper with my boys. I love the story of The Prince and the Pauper. A poor boy and a rich prince who look alike switch places. The boys learn lessons from living in each other’s shoes. So, what if I told you that God likes to work with spiritaul paupers? Jesus called it being “poor in spirit.”

What does it mean to be poor in spirit? It’s a valid question. If you casually read Jesus’ words in Matthew 5, and don’t take the time to study what it is that Jesus is saying, it can become very frustrating. After all, who talks like this today?

When Jesus talks about the poor is spirit is is speaking of those who recognize their spiritual poverty apart from Christ. We need to live lives of complete surrender and complete dependence upon God. On our won, we are spiritual debtors in need of God’s touch. Jesus came to pay our debt, and in doing so offered us life everlasting.

In the past couple of days we have seen a Jesus who called people to repentance, and called people to become fishers of men. Now as Jesus begins his great Sermon on the Mount, Jesus is calling his followers to live lives of surrender. Want to join in the great adventure of kingdom living? Then start with recognizing that you can’t get into the kingdom based upon your merits and accomplishments. We need Christ! And, He wants us. So, spiritually bankrupt one, cheer up, blessed are the poor in spirit, for to you belongs the kingdom of heaven.

Dear God,

We are spiritually bankrupt apart from you. Thank you for taking debtors and making us princes and princesses in the kingdom of heaven. Help us to live our lives making deposits in the economy of the kingdom. We love You and want to make You known to the world around us. To God be the glory, great things You have done. Do great things in us and through us.

In Jesus’ name,

Amen.