The Effect Of The Sermon On The Mount

The Effect Of The Sermon On The Mount

The Effect Of The Sermon On The Mount


By, James L. Thornton

Matthew 7:28. And it came to pass when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine: 29. For he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.

Matthew 8:1. When he was come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed him.

The Sermon On The Mount was ended and the people were dispersing. As they went they talked about the things they had heard. Many expressed their feelings and the impressions which had been made upon them by the words of the preacher.

Today people still express their feeling about the sermons they hear. Some say it was too long. Others say it was dull and boring. Some will say that there was not enough scripture used or misapplied. Then there are those who say he was not speaking to me, I’m not in that category. There are those who simply do not believe it. While a few will say it was just what I needed today.

Let us go back a moment to find the reason why so many had come to this mountain on that day for there were thousands who had journeyed many miles why did they come?

There had been none of the hype of modern advertising, there had been no media blitz, no full-page adds, no runners had carried the news of large crowd gathering to hear a prophet speak yet they came and came by the thousands. Jesus had a message for the world.

What brought them? What did they expect to happen? Were they disappointed that day? Let us look back over the days, and weeks, and months, that led up to that great day.

Matthew 4:23.  And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people.

24. And his fame went throughout all Syria: and they brought unto him all sick people that were taken with divers diseases and torments, and those which were possessed with devils, and those which were lunatic, and those that had the palsy; and he healed them.

25. And there followed him great multitudes of people from Galilee, and from Decapolis, and from Jerusalem, and from Judaea, and from beyond Jordan.

Matthew 5:1. 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,

The excitement must have run high as the people came together on that day. On the days leading up to The Sermon On The Mount, their sick had been healed, tormented souls had evil spirits cast out of them, those who had the dread disease of a palsy, who had been carried on cots by friends or loved ones were walking and carrying their own cots.

Blind people who had been led to the foot of the mountain now had their eyes open and were testifying to the fact. Lame men and women had thrown away their crutches and were leaping for joy.

Some had heard Jesus speak in their own communities and had followed Him here. They had more than followed Him they were drawn by a compelling force which caused them to leave homes, families, fields, flocks, herd, trades, occupations, ships and nets.

It was the same compelling force which drew you and me from our place one day to follow Him. I hope we all still feel it.

They followed Him up to the mountain. And when He was set…He’s never in a hurry. I feel that on this day Jesus walked among this vast throng as He spoke.

Farmers, fishermen, merchants, shopkeepers, tax-collectors, doctors of law, Pharisees, Scribes, rich-men, poor-men, beggars, saints and sinners, people from all walks of life were there on that day.

To Everyone, Jesus had something to say. How many times we go to church and never hear a word from our souls? Jesus knew the load which had been heaped upon them by their particular circumstance. Each felt, as they look into His eyes, that He really cared.

Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness; for they shall be filled.

Blessed are the pure in heart; for they shall see God.

These were words which the world had been waiting thousands of years to hear. He was the Christ of every man. Common people confronted by common needs, anxieties, temptations, where sin and pain, disease, and hunger reigns.

For I say unto you, that except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the Scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of God.

But I say unto you love your enemies.

On and on, how to give alms, how to fast, how to pray, where to lay up treasure. He told them not to worry about what they would eat, or drink, or wear. But above all things To seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.

They and all the world will remember the story of the man who would attempt to pull the mote from his brothers’ eye while he himself had a beam projecting from his own eye. Then, in conclusion, our Lord proclaiming these words were the foundation of life.

The long sermon was over and the day had slipped by almost unnoticed. The vast throng was un-wearied, none seemed in a hurry to leave, the atmosphere was charged with an unseen presence…we’ve all felt it at some time or the other.

They talked one with another. And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at His doctrine.


*To be exceedingly struck in the mind.

*Greatly wondering.

*The root meaning signifying to render immovable.

We would say that we have held spell-bound. Astonished (spell-bound) at His doctrine.

Matthew 13:54. He taught them in their synagogue, insomuch that they were astonished, and said, Whence hath this man this wisdom,

Mark 6:2. and many hearing him were astonished, saying, From whence hath this man these things? and what wisdom is this which is given unto him,

Luke 4:32. And they were astonished at his doctrine: for his word was with power.

The scribes and Pharisees taught from the words of the Torah=sacred writings and oral traditions.

The Torah says:

Our Law says:

Moses says:

But Jesus said I say unto you: He had authority from God and God sent power.

Now we want to see what the response of the Sermon On The Mount was to those who heard Him that day.

Mathew 8:1. When He was come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed Him.

I still believe that great preaching will still attract the people. People are still hungry for the word of God to be preached in their churches. Jesus said, And I, if I be lifted up from the earth will draw all men unto me (John 12:32). Remember I have already said that He is the Christ of every man.

I ask the question, Why are we here today? What do we expect to happen? It is because we are common people confronted by common needs, anxieties, temptations, where sin and pain, disease, and hunger reigns. Will we be disappointed when we leave here today? Will we get what we came for?

What is our response, our reaction, our comment on the message? On the preacher? Will we follow him? I hope when you leave here today your needs are met and the same feeling goes with you that went with the people who went away from the mountain many years ago.

By: James L. Thornton


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