Monday, August 27, 2012

Poor In Spirit

Recently, I've been deeply impressed to minimize the breadth of my scripture study to two things: reading the Book of Mormon and studying the New Testament.

To help with my studying of the New Testament, I decided to delve deep and truly learn and understand what the Savior taught.  Too often I have brushed over the words and have not internalized what has been taught.

As I learn and internalize, I will post my notes to this blog.

By the way, the complete Sermon on the Mount is up at  I watched all four parts this morning and was deeply moved by the production.

Matthew 5:3, Luke 6:20 and 3 Nephi 12:3 all discuss the topic of the "poor in spirit"

Matthew 5:3 reads, "Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven."

Luke 6:20 reads, "And he lifted up his eyes on his disciples, and said, Blessed be ye poor: for yours is the kingdom of heaven."

3 Nephi 12:3 reads, "Yea, blessed are the poor in spirit who come unto me, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven."

If one were poor in wealth or money, that would mean that person does not have much money - they experience some degree of poverty in which their needs are not met or their needs are barely met.  They do not have much or any money in their account.

Therefore to be poor in spirit would seem to mean that ones spiritual needs are not met or are barely being met.  They do not have any or they have very little spiritual assests.  Spiritually speaking, they have everything to gain and nothing to lose.  In which case, if they "come unto [Jesus]" and follow his teachings, they will inheirit the kingdom of heaven.

In the October 1974 conference, Elder O. Leslie Stone gave a talk on The Beatitudes and had this to say, "What is meant by 'poor in spirit'? Is it not humility, which renders us teachable and eager to learn? They who feel themselves spiritually poor approach God, asking him to supply their needs. They who have faith in him, learn his laws and try diligently to obey him. They thus become eligible for the great blessings he has promised, including salvation, exaltation, and eternal life, which are the greatest of all the gifts of God."

I also like what the NIV Bible footnote as to say about what poor in spirit means, "poor in spirit, In contrast to the spiritually proud and self-sufficient."

To be poor in spirit means to be:
dependant on God and Jesus

Related scriptures:
Mosiah 3:19
Mosiah 4:11
Helaman 3:35