Comfort for Those Who Mourn

David Norczyk
5 min readMay 16, 2024

It is an error to assign the beatitudes to the natural realm. They must be considered from a spiritual perspective; otherwise, one’s interpretation will be askew. Being “poor in spirit” is not about one’s financial condition, in the same way that “those who mourn” is not about bereavement. Our consideration here is the second of eight beatitudes, taught by Jesus in His sermon on the mount (Mt 5–7).

Blessed are those who mourn for they shall be comforted (Mt 5:4). There is a grief found within every believer in Jesus. It is found at the intersection of holiness and sin. When the Spirit of holiness begins His work in the soul of God’s elect redeemed, a new view toward sin is produced (Rom 1:4).

People are sinners in the world of sin (Rom 3:23; 5:12). Sin is lawlessness (1 Jn 3:4); and lawbreakers tend to enjoy the momentary pleasure provided by the thrill of disobeying the Law giver. The Law of God is holy (Rom 7:12); and therefore, God deals with sinners in His righteousness. He judges them with justice (Gen 18:25).

In teaching the children of God (1 Jn 3:1, 10), the Holy Spirit reveals the heart of God in the matter of sin. God hates those who do iniquity (Ps 5:5; 7:11; 11:5); therefore, all men everywhere are called to repent of their sins (Acts 17:30). Where the grace of repentance is granted (Acts 5:31; 11:18), there is comfort for the one who loathes the state of the world in sin (Jn 17:9). He laments the state of his own battle against sin (Rom 7:24). The natural man loves darkness (Jn 3:19); the spiritual man mourns (Mt 5:4).

Jesus was a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief (Is 53:3–4). He observed and dealt with the ravages of sin in the lives of many during His earthly ministry. People are enslaved to sin (Rom 6:6); but Jesus has sent the Spirit to convict people of their plight in sin and to comfort those who turn from their blind allegiance to that which would have eventually destroyed them (Jn 14:16; 16:8).

When the Holy Spirit quickens a dead soul (Jn 3:1–8; Eph 1:13; 2:5; Col 2:13; 1 Pet 1:3), that person has a new life and new hope (Rom 6:4; 2 Cor 5:17; 1 Tim 1:1). He or she now operates in the realm of the kingdom of heaven (Rom 14:17). Christians are ambassadors for Christ (2 Cor 5:20). They represent the interests of King Jesus and the kingdom not of this world. The Christian preacher tells the people of the world about the sad state of this world that lies in the power of the evil one (1 Jn 5:19). Satan, the ruler of this world of darkness (Jn 12:31; 14:30; 16:11), is a wicked despot. Exposing the father of lies is costly for those who tell the truth about him and his slave enterprise (Mt 5:10–12; Jn 8:44; Gal 4:14).

There is no hope for this world (Eph 2:12), nor for those who remain encumbered and entangled in the snares of the devil (1 Tim 3:7; 2 Tim 2:26; 2 Pet 2:20). The weary and heavy-laden, meaning the poor in spirit, must fix their eyes upon Jesus (Heb 12:2). In turn, with a view to the perfect God-man, an enlightenment occurs within the heart and mind of this man made new (Eph 1:18; Heb 6:4).

The state of one’s own heart, the state of enslaved humanity, the state of society, and the state of pending doom all cause the born again to mourn. The book of Ecclesiastes becomes a favorite read for “Vanity of vanities; it is all meaningless futility.” But alas, comfort ensues. The paradox of happy mourning is resolved.

Comfort from heaven is provided, in part, because deliverance is declared (1 Thess 1:10). It is believed and treasured. The slave to sin sees the hopelessness and is set free by looking to Jesus (Jn 8:32–36; Eph 2:12). He walks away from the lies; the darkness; the need for the approval of men; and the fear of death.

Turning to the atoning blood of Christ is an ongoing exercise for the duration of one’s Christian life. We sin. We repent. We look to Christ. We remember His death; and we are comforted. Christ died for us (Rom 5:8; 1 Cor 15:3); in order to save His people from their sins (Mt 1:21; 1 Pet 2:24). The Christian heart is filled with humble gratitude for what Christ has done on our behalf (Mic 6:8; 1 Thess 5:16–17).

The doctrine of sin is no longer despised by this hearer, when it is faithfully preached by the man of God. It is very much a part of the truth that sets us free to see, know, understand, and live in light of our cancelled debt of sin (Col 2:14).

The Christian mourns his wasted years spent in vain pursuit of every lust (1 Jn 2:15–17). He mourns that he was such easy prey for the adversary (1 Pet 5:8). He mourns that his void of gratitude toward his Maker and Provider was because of his narcissistic self-interest.

The kingdom of heaven is here and now in the Spirit (Rom 14:17). It is coming in its fullness on the last day (Rev 11:15; 19:11–21). This is the comfort, granted by God, through the indwelling Spirit in every beloved believer (Jn 14:17; Rom 8:9, 11). There is pleasure forever when all things are summed up in Christ (Ps 16:11; Eph 1:10).

In humble recognition of so great a salvation, let us grow in the knowledge of Christ and all He has done to deliver us from bondage to sin (Eph 6:6; 2 Pet 3:18). We who are poor in spirit and who mourn can only be happy with our juxtaposition. We are truly blessed to know the sad state of the world and our temporary stay under its influence. Our joy and comfort is in the kingdom of heaven in the Spirit (Mt 5:3; Rom 14:17).

May the joy of the Lord delight you with this hope in Christ Jesus — a hope that will not disappoint any one of us who believes in Him (Rom 10:11; 1 Pet 2:6). He will turn our mourning to joy and the nations will be glad (Ps 67:4; Jer 31:13).

David Norczyk

Spokane Valley, Washington

May 16, 2024

Matthew 5:4

--

--

David Norczyk

Some random theologian out West somewhere, Christian writer, preacher