Chapter 1: The Flute on God’s Lips
1. And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him:
2. And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying,
3. Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
4. Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.
5. Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
6. Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
7. Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
8. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
9. Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
10. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
12. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
13. Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savor, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.
The Gospel starts in an incredibly beautiful way. No other book starts that way, no other book can start that way. The Bible is “the book of the books”: that is the exact meaning of the word Bible - the Book. It is the most precious document that humanity has. That’s why it is called “The Testament,” because Jesus has witnessed to God in it: Jesus has become the witness to God, a testament. It is the only proof possible. God cannot be argued, but only a man like Jesus can become a proof for him.
The Gospel carries all that is beautiful in Jesus’ flowering, the Beatitudes. Those statements are the most beautiful ever made. Not even Buddha, not even Lao Tzu, have spoken that way. Buddha is very philosophic, very refined; Jesus is very plain, simple. Jesus speaks like a villager, a farmer, a fisherman. But because he speaks the way common people speak, his words have a solidity, a concreteness, a reality.