The Berean Expositor
Volume 13 - Page 59 of 159
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The Sermon on the Mount.
Reward and Entry.
pp. 5 - 8
Amplifying our last article we find that the majority express their views in some such
way as "The Sermon on the Mount gives the laws of Christ's kingdom". Is this true? Let
us again look carefully at the subject. By "The kingdom" is understood that future and
literal kingdom of which Christ is King and saved Israel the first and nearest to the
throne. If these words of Matt. 5:-7: are the "laws of that future kingdom", what do we
1. When Christ reigns in person on the earth, His people will still be subject to
persecution! For this read 5: 3-12, 44.
The most elementary acquaintance with prophecy will dispose of such an idea.
Persecution for righteousness' sake is a mark of the absent Lord, not of the reigning king.
2. The "laws" of 5: 21-48 legislate for those who entertain "murder" and "adultery"
in their hearts, who evade the law concerning "divorce" and "oaths", who smitten on the
cheek, who are sued at law for their cloak, who are pressed into the service of the state,
who are cursed and hated, despitefully used and persecuted.
Is this the state of affairs that shall obtain when the kingdom comes?
3. The kingdom is future in this Sermon:--
"Thy kingdom COME, Thy will BE DONE in earth as it is in heaven" (6: 10).
"They SHALL inherit the earth" (5: 5).
"They SHALL be filled" (5: 6).
"Many will say unto Me IN THAT DAY" (7: 22).
4. These "laws" are in force while there lie before men two paths, the strait and
narrow that FEW find and the wide and broad into which the MANY go.
If this represents the state of affairs when Christ reigns as King, then the glowing
words of prophecy are an illusion, evil is supreme, hope will be made ashamed, vanity
and vexation will still mark the steps of man. We believe that the Sermon on the Mount
relates to the "kingdom" and not to the "church", nevertheless we believe much harm has
been done to the cause of dispensational truth (which is the essence of all truth) by the
rather hasty conclusion that this sermon gives the "LAWS of the kingdom". The passage
contains its own explanation, which is enforced by the literary structure, and echoed by
the whole of the Gospel according to Matthew. This explanation we will now consider.