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List of the Beatitudes - Bible Study on the Beatitudes

Updated on July 26, 2013

Explanation of the Beatitudes! - Understanding the Sermon on the Mount

This Bible Study focuses on the eight beatitudes. This study is filled with links, resources for further study, children's helps, videos, and much more.

Webster defines the beatitudes as:

BEATITUDE, n. [L. beatitudo, from beatus, beo. See Beatify.]
1. Blessedness; felicity of the highest kind; consummate bliss; used of the joys of heaven.
2. The declaration of blessedness made by our Savior to particular virtues.

Christ listed eight of these spiritual works in Matthew 5::1-11. This has become known as part of the Sermon on the Mount.

(Matthew 5:1)
And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him:

(Matthew 5:2)
And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying,

(Matthew 5:3)
Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

(Matthew 5:4)
Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.

(Matthew 5:5)
Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.

(Matthew 5:6)
Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.

(Matthew 5:7)
Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.

(Matthew 5:8)
Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.

(Matthew 5:9)
Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.

(Mat 5:10) "Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

(Mat 5:11) "Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account.


For clarity of meaning I also quote from the New International Reader's Version

Matthew 5:1-9:  Jesus Gives Blessings
Jesus saw the crowds. So he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him. (2) Then he began to teach them. He said, (3) "Blessed are those who are spiritually needy. The kingdom of heaven belongs to them. (4) Blessed are those who are sad. They will be comforted. (5) Blessed are those who are free of pride. They will be given the earth. (6) Blessed are those who are hungry and thirsty for what is right. They will be filled. (7) Blessed are those who show mercy. They will be shown mercy. (8) Blessed are those whose hearts are pure. They will see God. (9) Blessed are those who make peace. They will be called sons of God.
(Picture Credit: James Joseph Jacques Tissot[see page for license], via Wikimedia Commons)

List of the Beatitudes - Sample Commentary - Explanation of the Sermon on the Mount

Sample Notes From:
John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible

5:2 And he opened his mouth - A phrase which always denotes a set and solemn discourse; and taught them - To bless men; to make men happy, was the great business for which our Lord came into the world. And accordingly he here pronounces eight blessings together, annexing them to so many steps in Christianity. Knowing that happiness is our common aim, and that an innate instinct continually urges us to the pursuit of it, he in the kindest manner applies to that instinct, and directs it to its proper object. Though all men desire, yet few attain, happiness, because they seek it where it is not to be found. Our Lord therefore begins his Divine institution, which is the complete art of happiness, by laying down before all that have ears to hear, the true and only true method of acquiring it. Observe the benevolent condescension of our Lord. He seems, as it were, to lay aside his supreme authority as our legislator, that he may the better act the part of: our friend and Saviour. Instead of using the lofty style, in positive commands, he, in a more gentle and engaging way, insinuates his will and our duty, by pronouncing those happy who comply with it.
5:3 Happy are the poor - In the following discourse there is,

1. A sweet invitation to true holiness and happiness, ver. 3 - 12. 5:3- 12.
2. A persuasive to impart it to others, ver. 13 - 16. 5:13- 16.
3. A description of true Christian holiness, ver. 17; chap.vii,12, 5:17; 7:12. (in which it is easy to observe, the latter part exactly answers the former.)
4. The conclusion: giving a sure mark of the true way, warning against false prophets, exhorting to follow after holiness.

The poor in spirit - They who are unfeignedly penitent, they who are truly convinced of sin; who see and feel the state they are in by nature, being deeply sensible of their sinfulness, guiltiness, helplessness. For theirs is the kingdom of heaven - The present inward kingdom: righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost, as well as the eternal kingdom, if they endure to the end. 6:20.
5:4 They that mourn - Either for their own sins, or for other men's, and are steadily and habitually serious. They shall be comforted - More solidly and deeply even in this world, and eternally in heaven.
5:5 Happy are the meek - They that hold all their passions and affections evenly balanced. They shall inherit the earth - They shall have all things really necessary for life and godliness. They shall enjoy whatever portion God hath given them here, and shall hereafter possess the new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.
5:6 They that hunger and thirst after righteousness - After the holiness here described. They shall be satisfied with it.
5:7 The merciful - The tender - hearted: they who love all men as themselves: They shall obtain mercy - Whatever mercy therefore we desire from God, the same let us show to our brethren. He will repay us a thousand fold, the love we bear to any for his sake.
5:8 The pure in heart - The sanctified: they who love God with all their hearts. They shall see God - In all things here; hereafter in glory.
5:9 The peace makers - They that out of love to God and man do all possible good to all men. Peace in the Scripture sense implies all blessings temporal and eternal. They shall be called the children of God - Shall be acknowledged such by God and man. One would imagine a person of this amiable temper and behaviour would be the darling of mankind. But our Lord well knew it would not be so, as long as Satan was the prince of this world. He therefore warns them before of the treatment all were to expect, who were determined thus to tread in his steps, by immediately subjoining, Happy are they who are persecuted for righteousness' sake. Through this whole discourse we cannot but observe the most exact method which can possibly be conceived. Every paragraph, every sentence, is closely connected both with that which precedes, and that which follows it. And is not this the pattern for every Christian preacher? If any then are able to follow it without any premeditation, well: if not, let them not dare to preach without it. No rhapsody, no incoherency, whether the things spoken be true or false, comes of the Spirit of Christ.
5:10 For righteousness' sake - That is, because they have, or follow after, the righteousness here described. He that is truly a righteous man, he that mourns, and he that is pure in heart, yea, all that will live godly in Christ Jesus, shall suffer persecution, 3:12. The world will always say, Away with such fellowsfrom the earth. They are made to reprove our thoughts. They are grievous to us even to behold. Their lives are not like other men's; their ways are of another fashion.
5:11 Revile - When present: say all evil - When you are absent.
5:12 Your reward - Even over and above the happiness that naturally and directly results from holiness.


Other Free Resources For the explanation of the meaning of the Beatitudes

Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament
The Adam Clarke Commentary
Matthew Henry’s Commentary on the Whole Bible

Where to find List of the Beatitudes Resource Material

Amazon Voting (Plexo) - Beatitude books

Lord, Only You Can Change Me: A Devotional Study on Growing in Character from the Beatitudes
Lord, Only You Can Change Me: A Devotional Study on Growing in Character from the Beatitudes

Enjoy the expanded and updated editions of the best-selling "Lord" Bible Study Series from Kay Arthur. The "Lord" study series is an insightful, warm-hearted Bible study series designed to meet readers where they are--and help them discover God's answers to their deepest needs.Can God Really Change You from the Inside Out? Yes! Who are you...on the inside? Are you growing into the image of Christ? Or are you far from being all you want to be in the Lord? If you've ever wondered how you can truly change, now there's hope. Jesus invites you to stop trying to develop godliness through your own efforts and to start relying on the indwelling Holy Spirit. That's the way to a deep, rich, honest relationship with your heavenly Father. That's the way to become godly to the core. In Lord, Only You Can Change Me, Kay Arthur guides you through the Beatitudesso you can begin living a truly transformed life. Her in-depth study of the Sermon on the Mount will minister to you in intimate ways. And these are truths you can share easily with others, individually or in small groups.

The Beatitudes: Developing Spiritual Character (John Stott Bible Studies)
The Beatitudes: Developing Spiritual Character (John Stott Bible Studies)

The beatitudes: eight qualities that God values. They call us to be meek and merciful, poor in spirit and pure in heart, mourning and hungry, peacemakers and persecuted. These are the character traits that Jesus highlighted to describe what he looks for in all Christians. As we study them and integrate them in our lives, we will also receive the blessing that Jesus promised.

The Pursuit of Happiness: An Exegetical Commentary on the Beatitudes
The Pursuit of Happiness: An Exegetical Commentary on the Beatitudes

"There is a difference between happiness and blessedness. Understanding the Greek word makarios is essential to understanding the important passage of Matthew 5:1-11 and Luke 6:20-26. With the Sermon on the Mount following, Jesus draws important conclusions to the walk of the Christian with the fact of true happiness all of us desire.."


Beatitudes For Today Poll

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Jesus in the Gospels - Web resources

It is impossible to separate a study of the beatitudes from Jesus life and ministry in the Gospels. Check out some of these resources.

Spotlight for serios study of Jesus in the Gospels. RECOMMENDATION!

This is not a study of the historical Jesus. This is a study of the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John which highlights the way these gospels understand the person and mission of Jesus. It involves reading large portions of the scriptures to understand the perspective from and the context in which the gospel writers see Jesus.

This study has an amazing payoff for groups that understand the value of commitment and diligence in the study of the scriptures.

Jesus in the Gospels - Study Manual
Jesus in the Gospels - Study Manual

Recommended for the serious Bible study!

This is a Bible study that requires a high level of commitment. It features daily readings, from different books of the Bible.


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    • Legenden profile image

      Legenden 4 years ago

      Great lens! :)

    • Wbisbill LM profile image

      Barbara Isbill 4 years ago from New Market Tn 37820

      @msseiboi: Have a great day!

    • profile image

      msseiboi 4 years ago

      Interesting and inspiring ....

    • Wbisbill LM profile image

      Barbara Isbill 4 years ago from New Market Tn 37820

      @Gypzeerose: Thanks

    • Gypzeerose profile image

      Rose Jones 4 years ago

      Wonderful lens, pinned to my Christianity board.

    • Wbisbill LM profile image

      Barbara Isbill 4 years ago from New Market Tn 37820

      @BunnyFabulous: Thanks for the visit. May their blessings be with you.

    • BunnyFabulous profile image

      BunnyFabulous 5 years ago from Central Florida

      I love seeing Jesus' heart for people in the beatitudes.

    • Wbisbill LM profile image

      Barbara Isbill 5 years ago from New Market Tn 37820

      @selah74: Thanks for visit and comments!

    • selah74 profile image

      selah74 5 years ago

      Love your lens and especially the quiz! (I scored well, I always like quizzes when I score well).

    • profile image

      ChristianDatingHelp 5 years ago

      Great resource to learn about the Beatitudes here, really well explained and totally important! Thank you

    • M Schaut profile image

      Margaret Schaut 6 years ago from Detroit

      More than ever, the Beatitudes are relevant! I tried to get to this topic and never had the time. Beautiful job. God bless!

    • Inkhand profile image

      Inkhand 6 years ago

      An interesting lens.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Nice lens!

    • John Howel profile image

      John Howel 6 years ago

      Thank for this lens - it is important that we learn to understand the teachings of the Bible, and not just repeat them from memory, but to put them into practice. As I went through your lens and came to: "Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." I couldn´t help rembering the many times I have heard this as justification for many things (not worth getting into now) by leaving out "in spirit". Unfortunate agrument fallacy, but it also severely limits the power beneath these truths.

    • shincyriades profile image

      shincyriades 6 years ago

      Thanks for such a great lens! I also have Christian lenses and always glad to see others spreading the Good News.

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      rhondagoforth 6 years ago

      I enjoyed reading this. The beatitudes are so important to our Christian life today!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Lensrolling this over to my Second Mile Ministry lens. Great work.

    • Charlino99 profile image

      Tonie Cook 6 years ago from USA

      Thank you for sharing this information. Beautifully explained, and completely in tact. The Beatitudes is one of my favorite parts of The Bible.

    • SAMEPRINCESS10 profile image

      SAMEPRINCESS10 6 years ago

      Paul, And Moses, and the two Mary's? All forgiven no matter who they were. 3 different Bible stories. I like the story of Noah's Ark especially. Works of God through these followers of God. To save the world from sin. The rightousness, the love, and the belief. Church the home of God. The gate to Heaven. The day is nearing. What will the percentage of this world believe in? Who will survive? Will all family be in Heaven? Thanks!

    • AppalachianCoun profile image

      AppalachianCoun 8 years ago

      This is an awesome list on an awesome passage in the Bible. Thank-you.

      5 stars*****