1. In these verses we read about the 2 main activities that Jesus participated in during His ministry: healing and preaching. 2. Concerning His preaching, in vs.43 Jesus stated that: a. He was compelled to "preach the kingdom of God" b. He was sent to do so. 3. Preaching the kingdom was very important to the Lord. a. Matthew 4:17, 23 b. Matthew 9:35 c. Luke 8:1 4. As Jesus preached, He gave His requirements for entering God's kingdom. 5. In our lesson we are studying 6 of the Lord's requirements. Discussion: I. (Matthew 5:3) TO ENTER GOD'S KINGDOM WE MUST BE "POOR IN SPIRIT"
A. Additional passages help us understand the Lord's requirement (Psalm 51:17; Isaiah 57:15; 66:2). B. Requests like those David made in Psalm 19:12-14; 139:23-24 are indications that a person is poor in spirit. C. The publican in the Lord's parable in Luke 18:9-14 was poor in spirit while the Pharisee was not. II. (Matthew 5:19-20) TO ENTER GOD'S KINGDOM WE MUST "EXCEED THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF THE SCRIBES AND PHARISEES"
A. The scribes and Pharisees disobeyed certain commands of God, and they taught others to do the same. B. To enter the kingdom of heaven we must not follow the example of these people. III. (Matthew 7:21-23) TO ENTER GOD'S KINGDOM WE MUST DO THE FATHER'S WILL
A. At the judgment many will be lost who will claim to have done great things in the Lord's name. B. Jesus requires us to do His Father's will. IV. (Matthew 18:1-4) TO ENTER GOD'S KINGDOM WE MUST "BE CONVERTED AND BECOME AS LITTLE CHILDREN"
A. The disciples wanted to know who was the greatest in the kingdom. B. Before Jesus answered their question in vs.4 He told them how to enter the kingdom in vs.3. V. (Mark 9:43-48) TO ENTER GOD'S KINGDOM WE MUST ELIMINATE THINGS THAT WILL CAUSE US TO STUMBLE
A. Jesus illustrated His point by referring to important parts of the body that we would not want to lose, including a hand, a foot, and an eye. B. Anything that will cause us to stumble must be eliminated, even something as special as a hand, a foot, or an eye. VI. (John 3:3-5) TO ENTER GOD'S KINGDOM WE MUST "BE BORN AGAIN," THAT IS, "BE BORN OF WATER AND OF THE SPIRIT" Conclusion:
1. As Jesus preached the kingdom of God, He gave His requirements for entering that special kingdom. 2. Are you complying with His requirements?