I am eager to preach through the Sermon on the Mount. As I mentioned in my message “Introduction to the Sermon on the Mount“ out of all the sermons that Jesus preached and taught, there is no other message that has received more attention than the Sermon on the Mount, which is found in Matthew chapters 5, 6, and 7. Throughout the church history Christians have heard more messages from this sermon than any other, and pastor-preachers have preached more messages from this sermon than any other. And personally, there is no other sermon by our Lord that has profoundly made impact on my own Christian life than the Sermon on the Mount. That is why I hope and pray that all of us will have life-changing experiences as we study this powerful sermon by our Lord Jesus Christ.
Let me offer a few pastoral/practical tips on getting the most out of this series:
1. Read Matthew chapters 5-7 all at once in one sitting. Just as we don’t take breaks when we listen to a sermon, read the whole thing all at once in one sitting.
2. Read Matthew chapters 5-7 all at once again. This does not mean you can’t take a break in between for few hours or even few days or so. But do read it again. This time when you do so, be more observant. Look for repetitions such as repetitive nouns and/or verbs. Many times, repetitions are key emphasis. And take note of such observations by writing them down on your notebook or underline/highlight them on your Bible. The point is: be proactive and take note on your discoveries.
3. Pray for wisdom. The difference between knowledge and wisdom is that the latter refers to “skillful applications.” Wisdom is not satisfied with simply knowing/having facts, but how to go about applying such truths and facts into practices skillfully and even daily. As James exhorts “You have not because you ask not” (James 4:2b).
4. Listen attentively with eagerness, humility, and with a teachable heart on Sunday morning. If you would to follow those first three points faithfully, I can assure you that your listening skills will improve on Sunday mornings as you listen to the expositions on those texts that you’ve meditated and studied already.
For the sake of your edification for God’s glory!