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Mourning follows a poor spirit
The first step to spiritual happiness begins with a poor self-spirit, a humility springing from admitting that we cannot save ourselves. In response, God gives us the kingdom of heaven. In verse 4, we see the truly saved will have a godly sorrow over sins. Happy are those who mourn? The Apostle Paul explains in 2 Corinthians chapter 7:9-11.
9Now I rejoice, not that you were made sorry, but that your sorrow led to repentance. For you were made sorry in a godly manner, that you might suffer loss from us in nothing. 10For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death. 11For observe this very thing, that you sorrowed in a godly manner: What diligence it produced in you, what clearing of yourselves, what indignation, what fear, what vehement desire, what zeal, what vindication! In all things you proved yourselves to be clear in this matter.
The second step in the Beatitudes acknowledges our sins in a profound way: to mourn with a deep sense of grief, often associated with the death (Mark 16:10, Luke 6:21). Coming face to face with the seriousness of our sins, we have a deep sense of sorrow that greatly needs comforting. Mourning produces a genuine repentance (a change inside) and a burden is then lifted off, and God’s healing comfort will come in.
Questions: How does sorrow bring about repentance and salvation? Do ALL Christians mourn over their past sins? Have you come to a place in your life where you have mourned over your sins? Has God forgiven you?
Godly mourning is better than worldly pleasures
Godly mourning is lacking in many “feel good” churches preaching positive messages, affirming the congregation’s self- esteem. But the mourning over our sin and the receiving God’s comforting forgiveness allows us to come face to face with how sinful we are and there is a very real need for a Savior. Read Ecclesiastes 7:
2 Better to go to the house of mourning than to go to the house of feasting, for that is the end of all men; and the living will take it to heart. 3 Sorrow is better than laughter, for by a sad countenance the heart is made better. 4 The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning, but the heart of fools is in the house of mirth.
The Bible warns against the “pleasures” of sin being short-lived. Hebrews 11 says, “24 By faith Moses, when he became of age, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter, 25 choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, 26esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt; for he looked to the reward.” That “pleasure of sin for a season” (KJV) has no eternal rewards.
Godly mourning is broader than just our sins
Christians also mourn over sins in the world. Paul lamented over sinners in 2 Cor. 12:21 “I shall mourn for many who have sinned before and have not repented of the uncleanness, fornication, and lewdness….” There is a godly sorrow which should burden us to share the gospel.
Some say that Christians shouldn’t judge others or call out sin as sin. But if that were so, would our nation have ever brought to an end the evils of slavery? We should sorrow over sins and the lost world.
Good mourning: comfort from God
The beatitudes are steps of progress in our salvation. The second reward is in our comfort. The word for comfort is paraklethesontai. Those who know Greek will quickly recognize the cognate word, Paraklete, a word which Jesus used to describe the Holy Spirit.
16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever; 17 Even the Spirit of truth…26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you…7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth; it is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you… (John 14:16-17a, 26; 16:7.)
We have the kingdom of heaven and the comfort of the Holy Spirit. If you mourn over your sins and the sins of the world, God will comfort you.
Others will also comfort you
Not only will we be comforted by God, but others will also comfort us. The first two chapters of 2 Corinthians uses “comfort” more than anywhere else in the Bible. Do you need some comfort? Read the following:
3Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. 5 For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also abounds through Christ. 6Now if we are afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is effective for enduring the same sufferings which we also suffer. Or if we are comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation. 7And our hope for you is steadfast, because we know that as you are partakers of the sufferings, so also you will partake of the consolation.
If you read 1 Cor. 5 with this passage, you will see a church which did not mourn over sin. Paul prompted the church to have godly sorrow, sinners repented, and the church was restored and comforted.