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The Beatitudes is a declaration of blessedness and rewards made by Jesus at the beginning of the Sermon on the Mount for obedient followers and believers, both present and in days to come. In addition, Jesus describes in this passage those who are not in the kingdom yet and showed worthiness of living n the domain. Beatitude is also found in the Old Testament, especially in the Psalms (1:1; 34:8; 65:4; 128:1), and often in the New Testament (John 20:29; Rom. 14:22; James 1:12; Rev. 14:13).

The Beatitudes

And seeing the multitudes, He went up on a mountain, and His disciples came to Him when He was seated. Then He opened His mouth and taught them, saying (Matthew 5: 1-12):

3 “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

4 “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.

5 “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.

6 “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.

7 “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.

8 “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.

9 “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons[a] of God.

10 “Blessed are those persecuted for righteousness sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

The woes are mentioned twice in the narratives in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke. First, Matthew states that Jesus criticized them for taking the place of honor at banquets, wearing flashy clothing, and encouraging people to call them rabbis.

The woes are all hypocrisy and illustrate the differences between inner and outer moral states.[1] Jesus portrays the Pharisees as impatient with the outward ritual observance of minutiae, which made them look acceptable and virtuous outwardly but left the inner person unreformed. Eight woes are listed in Matthew, and hence Matthew’s version is known as the eight woes. These are in Matthew 23, verses 13, 14, 15, 16, 23, 25, 27, and 29.

Only six are given in Luke, whose version is thus known as the six woes.

Woes to the Pharisees and Scribes

Luke 11:42-45, 47,52 English Standard Version (ESV)

42 “But woe to you, Pharisees! For you tithe mint and rue and every herb, and neglect justice and the love of God. These you ought to have done without neglecting the others.

43 Woe to you, Pharisees! You love the best seat in the synagogues and greetings in the marketplaces.

44 Woe to you! You are like unmarked graves; people walk over them without knowing it.”

45 “Woe to you, lawyers also! You load people with burdens hard to bear, and you yourselves do not touch the burdens with one of your fingers.

47 Woe to you! For you build the tombs of the prophets whom your fathers killed.

52 Woe to you, lawyers! For you have taken away the key of knowledge. You did not enter yourselves and hindered those who were entering.” The seven woes are:

They taught about God but did not love God – they did not enter the kingdom of heaven themselves nor let others join.

They preached God but converted people to dead religion, thus making those converts twice as many sons of hell as they were.

They taught that an oath sworn by the temple or altar was not binding but that if certified by the gold ornamentation of the temple or by a sacrificial gift on the altar, it was binding. The gold and skills, however, were not sacred in themselves as the temple and altar were, but derived a lesser sacredness by being connected to the temple or altar. The teachers and Pharisees worshiped at the temple and offered sacrifices at the altar because they knew the temple and altar were sacred. How could they deny oath-binding value to what was truly blessed and accord it to objects of trivial and derived sacredness?

They taught the law but did not practice some of the essential parts of the law – justice, mercy, and faithfulness to God. Instead, they obeyed the minutiae of the law, such as tithing spices but not the weightier matters of the law.

They appeared to be ‘clean’ (self-restrained, not involved in sexual matters), yet they were dirty inside: they seethed with hidden worldly desires and sensuality. They were full of greed and self-indulgence.

They exhibited themselves as righteous because they were scrupulous keepers of the law but were not righteous: their mask of righteousness hid a secret inner world of ungodly thoughts and feelings. They were full of wickedness. They were like whitewashed tombs, beautiful on the outside but full of dead men’s bones.

They professed high regard for the dead prophets of old and claimed that they would never have persecuted and murdered prophets when they were cut from the same cloth as the persecutors and murderers: they, too, had murderous blood in their veins. Wikipedia

The Woes of the Pharisees is a list of criticisms by Jesus against scribes and Pharisees recorded in the Gospels of Luke 11:37–54 and Matthew 23:1–39.[1] Mark 12:35–40 and Luke 20:45–47 also include warnings about scribes.

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