Miscellaneous Leadership Principles
In the Gospel of Matthew, there are a variety of leadership principles that we can learn, apply and study in one teaching. One of these principles I have already taught you is in the section referred to as Basics.
This teaching covers completely the subject of ‘burning the chaff’ -- which means to get rid of all the junk and unneeded materials that are hanging around your home. Jesus Christ stressed this principle to a great degree and I have taught it to you in a teaching called The Importance of Burning the Chaff. I suggest that you study this teaching in great detail because it will help to deliver you in many areas of your life that could be holding you back from more effectively living and moving God's Word. Have you ever walked into somebody's home or yard and there is junk all over the place? You can't seem to think straight, am I correct? That is because devil spirits hang out where there is junk and where there is filth.
Now lets get back to Matthew and study the following leadership principles of Jesus Christ.
Blessed are the poor [humble] in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled. Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see [understand] God. Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you. -- Matthew 5: 3–12
There is a lot of important doctrine here that Jesus Christ went over and in a manner familiar to an Advanced Class. He covered a number of principles that we are going to go over one by one so that we can understand God's Word and Jesus Christ.
Blessed are the poor [humble] in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. -- Matthew 5: 3
Let me give you a literal translation of the first part of this verse from the Aramaic:
The King James Version uses the word rucha, pneuma in Greek which is the English word ‘spirit’. The word ‘poor’ is humble in their own spirit, or in themselves, in their own minds. When people are in this state of mind, they are meek or teachable. For those people, the reward is the kingdom of heaven. Is this a leadership principle? The greatest leader is always the greatest follower.
You must remember that the King James Version is written in a format referred to as ‘Old English’. The word ‘humble’ here is referring to a believer that is teachable. If a person is full of pride, it is impossible for him or her to be teachable because they think they know it all. Do you know some people like that? I can remember clearly when I was that way. You just can't seem to relax and enjoy life because you have put yourself on a pedestal and most people do not care to be around that type of person. It results in a very lonely life, but yet you go on and on thinking that you know it all and that you're smarter than everyone else. And then you reason it even farther to the point of rationalization, figuring that the reason you are so lonely is because you are smarter than everyone else. It's a big lie -- it's a lie straight from hell. That's why Jesus Christ covered this principle first, because it is so important to be teachable or if you want to call it - to be humble. The Aramaic text says to be without pride.
Working the King James Version even farther, we should know that there are nine (9) different usages of the word ‘spirit’ used in the Bible. This is usage 4 meaning the individual entity or self often referred to as the heart. Blessed are the humble in the innermost part of their being – in their heart.
To conclude this principle and section, I am going to give you George M. Lamsa’s translation from the Aramaic of the Peshitta – the ancient eastern text.
Blessed are the humble, [Aramaic, poor in pride, unassuming] for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. – Matthew 5: 3
The Aramaic translation shows us that the word ‘poor’ should really be ‘humble’ – poor or absent in pride. Keep in mind that the Gospels were originally written in ARAMAIC and then later translated into Greek.
One verse of Scripture and we dug deep – and found great treasures – great wisdom! The Word of God is astounding. Now let’s move to the next verse.
Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted. – Matthew 5: 4
The word ‘mourn’ here is defined in the Lexicon as to bewail or lament. This means to be sorrowful. Many times, as a result of the pressures or tribulations this world brings upon us, we are human and we feel sorrow and regret. Jesus Christ promises us that although we are under such pressure from the god of this world, we will be comforted. Let me give you a real life example so that this can become living and real to you.
Less than four years ago, I lost someone extremely dear to me. They lived a long time, but it still seemed to cut my heart. I was very sorrowful and until lately, I mourned almost every day over this incident. God eventually comforted my heart by having me only remember all the great times we had together and how I made sure that my ‘good friend’ had the best life he could possibly have. And also, God brought to mind the third heaven and earth (paradise again on earth) where I would see my Buddy again. We would spend time in the mountains together and experience great adventures ........... AND for all eternity! God comforted me and I needed this to go on – to continue teaching and believing. God is not a man that He can lie. God will always come through for you. Sometimes it seems to take forever – but God’s timing is perfect. When He makes something happen, it is the EXACT RIGHT TIME.
Going again to our Aramaic backup translation, Matthew 5: 4 is translated almost exactly the same. The word ‘that’ is ‘who’ and that is the only difference.
What a great promise from Jesus Christ who always did and spoke God’s Will. If you’re feeling down about something, just keep standing and God will comfort you.
Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord. -- I Corinthians 15: 58
Let’s go to the next verse in Matthew Chapter five (5). Only a few verses, but yet with a multitude of dynamic promises. I do not see how a person cannot get excited about the Word of God. God gives us all the answers – all we have to do is apply them by our own free will and the more than abundant life is ours.
Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. — Matthew 5: 5
One of the most interesting words in this verse is the word ‘meek’. It means to endure all things with an even temper; to be gentle and enduring. These are qualities necessary for a person to be teachable, similar to being humble in pride as we went over in verse 3 of this chapter above. Many people misinterpret this word ‘meek’ and in turn, wrongly divide the Word. The best association you can put in your mind regarding this word ‘meek’ is TEACHABLE which is its proper usage in the context of most Scriptures.
We are heirs of God and joint-heirs with Christ and that is why Jesus Christ says that the meek shall inherit the earth.
That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel. – Ephesians 3: 6
And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise. – Galatians 3: 29
Matthew 5: 5 is important, simple and straightforward again illustrating another promise of God to believers. The Aramaic translation is also the same as the King James Version.
Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled. – Matthew 5: 6
This verse is simple to understand. If a person is searching for righteousness, they are searching for the true God. And God makes a promise here that those who are hungry and thirst after righteousness shall be filled. Literally, if you are searching for God, God promises that you will find Him.
Getting into more detail and research, the word ‘filled’ is the Greek word chortazo. This kind of filling has variations depending upon the appetite of the individual being filled. The more of God’s Word you seek out, the more you will be filled. Those who dig deep and study hard and do research will find the greatest treasures. Lamsa’s translation from the Aramaic of the Peshitta gives you a slightly different perspective of the verse and may help to open up your understanding.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for justice, for they shall be well satisfied. – Matthew 5: 6
What I like about the Aramaic translation is the fact that we really are searching for justice, aren’t we? We realize that the world is never fair and that oftentimes we are cheated out of our just reward. Also, the ending of the verse is comforting. We “shall be well satisfied.”
For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed [disappointed in his or her expectation]. – Romans 10: 11
Isn’t that just tremendous? Jesus Christ taught us this leadership principle and in the New Testament God reminds us of this once again. We shall (absolutely) be filled; we shall be well satisfied; we will realize our expectations.
Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy. – Matthew 5: 7
This actually is a very important principle that took me years to master. What Jesus Christ is saying is that if you do not show mercy to others, you will not be granted mercy when you need it. Mercy is to have compassion on anyone by actually relieving him or her, even though what he or she did might be wrong. I had this experience recently. Someone did something regarding my website that simply was not in alignment and harmony with God’s Word. It violated this principle among a few others:
Let all things be done decently and in order. – I Corinthians 14: 40
Instead of getting angry, I asked the person to undo what they did and spent hours explaining why. This person agreed to do what I asked. That was mercy – trying to help a person who may have intentionally or unintentionally done something wrong. Try it. It works. When you screw up and we all do, then you will be granted mercy.
The Aramaic translation is almost exactly the same.
Ok, we have covered 7 of 12 Scriptures in this great section loaded with promises and principles. Let’s move on.
Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see [understand] God. – Matthew 5: 8
“Pure in heart” intrigues me. Let’s check it out.
‘Pure’ is defined here as pure from everything that would change or corrupt the nature of the subject with which it is combined; free from every stain odour, colour, or any useless thing whatever; free from every false adornment.’
Something, isn’t it? How are we ever going to measure up to those requirements? By renewing our minds to God’s Word. That’s the only way. And I do love the part that says to be free from “every useless thing”. There’s a lot of that in the world. Only the Word of God will set a person free. Jesus Christ said it.
And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. – John 8: 32
‘Heart’ here is the innermost part of a person’s being. That’s where we are to be pure. It’s beautiful and amazing what God Almighty can do with words. But it is also amazing what we can do when we apply those words in our life.
Now the second part of the verse says that if we strive to be pure in heart by studying, working and applying God’s perfect Word, THEN we will understand God.
One of the definitions of the word “see” is to truly comprehend or know. We should know by now that God is invisible and no one literally sees God.
There is so much truth here in one verse. How can one help but get excited? The Aramaic translation is the same as the King James Version.
Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God. – Matthew 5: 9
This verse says what it means and means what is says. Those who keep God first and offer the peace of God by speaking His Word to others shall be called the children of God. I like having God as my Father, don’t you? The Aramaic translation is almost exactly the same.
Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. – Matthew 5: 10
The only reason you are going to be persecuted is because you are speaking God’s rightly divided Word and some people simply refuse to believe it. That’s their problem. They will point fingers at you and also spread malicious lies about you. They will do whatever they can to use your words against you. What does God say about this? He says you’re blessed. You stand in good company along with the prophets of the Old Testament, Jesus Christ, and all of the Apostles. I always say to myself when the thorns in my flesh (people) make their move……………….. “What did you expect? A welcome wagon!” Do you expect the adversary to lay out a red carpet for you? He’s after the only thing that defeats him and that is God’s Word. When you’re in fellowship with the true God, the enemy can only roar, but he cannot bite. And he can roar loudly. Do not let him scare you.
Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world. – I John 4: 4
You’re better off being persecuted for righteousness’ sake because if you conform to this present world, you are going to be persecuted anyway. And what is the reward for handling this persecution and tribulation? Eternal life in the kingdom of heaven and the more than abundant life while on this present second heaven and earth. I can live with that, how about you? The Aramaic translation is almost exactly the same.
Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. – Matthew 5: 11
If you’re not getting persecution from the unbelievers, you’re not doing something right. When people persecute me for no apparent reason, I KNOW I am getting under the adversary’s skin. I love it. This verse is really a continuation of verse 10. Jesus Christ drove the point home. Here’s a diamond I want you to never forget.
Let them be ashamed and confounded that seek after my soul; let them be turned backward, and put to confusion, that desire my hurt [mentally]. – Psalm 70: 2
I have seen people that persecuted me unjustly almost drop dead. Did I wish it upon those people? Of course not. They bring it upon themselves. No one messes with God’s kids and don’t ever forget it. The Aramaic translation is very similar to King James. In conclusion, let’s move on to verse 12.
Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you. -- Matthew 5: 12
Again, this verse is a continuation of the subject matter stated in verse 11 where Jesus Christ draws a conclusion and repeats himself in the same manner that God Almighty repeats Himself at times. When God says something twice, it establishes that fact and that revelation will absolutely come to pass.
And for that the dream was doubled unto Pharaoh twice; it is because the thing is established by God, and God will shortly bring it to pass. – Genesis 41: 32
Twice establishes it. We are to rejoice and be exceedingly glad when we are persecuted by the idiots – when they speak evil and lies about us for no apparent reason and unjustly. It takes guts and integrity to stand for the Word of God in this day and age. The God-rejectors, in reality are the cowards. We are the conquerors – more than conquerors. Glory to God.
Now unto him [God] that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power [dunamis - inherent power] that worketh in us. – Ephesians 3: 20
The main question is how much are we allowing God to work in us. We must manifest the internal potential power that we have within before God can do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think. We need not only to believe what is written, but apply it. We act first and then we see. You need to put time aside to study God’s Word. Then work it on your own. Get a good Lexicon and any other research materials such as a large Concordance. You will find these tools invaluable for finding the treasures in the Word as you dig deeper and deeper. Giving your all for God is truly life in the fast lane – an adventure that is full of excitement and endless rewards.