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Chapter 20

The Beatitudes
(Part II)

 

We must be pure.
I do not speak merely of the purity of the senses.
We must observe great purity in our will,
in our intentions,
in all our  actions.
—St. Peter Julian Eymard

 

 

Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy. (Matt. 5:7)  After we have been filled with the twelve fruits of the Holy Spirit from the Tree of Life, Jesus Christ, we can share this gift with others through works of mercy, both corporal and spiritual.  Love of God always leads to love of neighbor.  The two always go together because, “Love of our neighbor is included in the love of God.” (St. Thomas Aquinas)  Insofar as our soul is full of the supernatural spiritual love of God, our love of neighbor will be free of strings attached, free of the need to feed our ego or to simply to make us feel good.  Even so, the merciful on earth, even though their love be imperfect, shall obtain mercy and grace from heaven and will, thereby, grow in their love of God and neighbor.  Be merciful and God will be merciful to you, and He will bless you.  Mercy is love and forgiveness, kindness and compassion.  It is the truth that sets us free.  It is helping and serving those in need because you love them in God and for God.

Blessed are the clean of heart, for they shall see God. (Matt. 5:8)  As we work with God on the practice of the previous Beatitudes, we are in the process of cleaning up our way of loving.  Our love is becoming more pure and sincere, more humble and holy, more real and true.  “I love you,” now means, “I want what is best for you according to God’s will.”  Our heart is clean, our love is pure, insofar as we desire the will of God and nothing other.  By turning away from temptation to sin and choosing to do God’s will despite every obstacle, we are increasingly united to Jesus Christ and set free from our blindness, our false concepts and small ideas, to follow the light of the Holy Spirit and the grace of the moment.  More and more, we “see God” at work in Divine Providence.  We follow in faith, step by step, until one day we “see God,” we pray, “face to face” in the vision of the transforming union here on earth or the immeasurably greater Beatific Vision of God in heaven.

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. (Matt. 5:9)  The more we become one with the Son of God in the Love of the Holy Spirit, we are at peace.  This peace is divine.  It is “the peace of God which surpasses all understanding,” and it keeps our heart and mind in Christ Jesus. (Phil. 4:7)  In Him we truly become “peacemakers.  “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.” (John 14:27)  “As you enter a house, wish it peace.  If the house is deserving, your peace will descend upon it.” (Matt. 10:12-13)

Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.(Matt. 5:10)  The devil persecutes those who are becoming holy or righteous,” because they are doing what is right and not evil.  They are united to Christ and not him.  So, he uses proud people to attack them.  Actually, it is Christ within them who he is attacking.  The devil hates Christ.  He is the “Anti-Christ.”  But God protects them with His Holy Spirit and guards them with His holy angels.  The devil can do no more than God allows.  Why does God allow it?  “Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be very great in heaven.” (Matt. 5:12)

 

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