Re: Verse reading–Matthew 5:1-16 (day one) At Christmas we celebrate “good news of great joy” which the angels sang to the shepherds. (Luke 2) This week as we read the Sermon on the Mount we listen as the Lord explains the content of this good news. What is the gospel? How has God blessed us so that we can rejoice even when life is hard? By giving us the Kingdom of God–a new, possible, beneficial relationship with God, made possible by the Son, in which we trade our will for His will, our destiny for his destiny. When we experience this new relationship it changes everything. Not poverty, or loss, or powerlessness, or hunger/thirst now has the power to defeat us. His Kingdom more than compensates us, transforming even these hardships into blessings. It is the great good news! It is the reason we can rejoice in the hardest moments of life. The Kingdom is ours.