Sermon on the Mount

Simple and straightforward, yet endlessly captivating, the Sermon on the Mount is a startling invitation to inhabit an alternative world-where the new creation has come in Jesus himself.

Rather than laying down laws and calling us to pull ourselves up by our bootstraps, the Sermon offers "verbal icons through which we may see into God's will and be empowered for the moral life," writes Charles Talbert. Its call for radical obedience is not "for conformity to legitimate external rules, but for the total transformation of a person," Bonnie Thurston agrees. "To be obedient to Jesus is to become as he is, humble and gentle."

Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove calls the Sermon's opening poem, the Beatitudes, the key to living faithfully in a broken world. Shane Claiborne asks how we should make discerning judgments without being judgmental. "Folks are hungry for a Christianity that mirrors Jesus," he notes, "not the judgmentalism that has done more to repel than to woo people towards God's grace."

The study guides and lesson plans integrate Bible study, prayer, and worship to help us central threads in the Sermon on the Mount's rich tapestry of Jesus' teaching. The guides can be used in a series or individually. You may download and reproduce them for personal or group use.

Download the entire Sermon on the Mount issue and the set of six Study Guides. Or, download individual pieces by clicking the titles below.



Hymn and Worship Service

Inspirational Pieces

Book Reviews

  • "The World Is Thus," by Gregory A. Clark
    • Dale Allison, The Sermon on the Mount: Inspiring the Moral Imagination
    • Glen Stassen, Living the Sermon on the Mount: A Practical Hope for Grace and Deliverance
    • Charles H. Talbert, Reading the Sermon on the Mount: Character Formation and Ethical Decision Making in Matthew 5-7
  • "Living the Beatitudes Today," by Arthur Paul Boers
    • Jim Forest, The Ladder of the Beatitudes
    • James C. Howell, The Beatitudes for Today
    • Erik Kolbell, What Jesus Meant: The Beatitudes and a Meaningful Life

Study Guides and Lesson Plans(Download the set of six Study Guides)

Further Reading