The first book I published is a collection of my sermons on Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount. You can read the introduction below and check it out on Amazon here.
“The most famous preacher ever.
The most famous sermon ever.
The most misunderstood message in history?
Many, Christian and non-Christian alike, have read, studied, and appreciated Jesus of Nazareth’s Sermon on the Mount. It has been called by no less a theologian than Augustine, “a perfect standard for the Christian life.” Kurt Vonnegut, though not a Christian, wrote that, “if Christ hadn’t delivered the Sermon on the Mount, with its message of mercy and pity, I wouldn’t want to be a human being. I’d just as soon be a rattlesnake.”
But is that what Christ intended his sermon to be: a morality code on the hand or an aspirational vision on the other? If it is either, it’s lasting impact is certainly summed up in the words of Oliver Wendell Holmes: “Most people are willing to take the Sermon on the Mount as a flag to sail under, but few will use it as a rudder by which to steer.”
As a moral code, it is impossible and as a humanist manifesto it is anemic.
But if it is more, perhaps it can yet be redeemed from its place on the mantelpiece of human philosophy?
And it is more: it is the radical declaration of a unique king calling people to join him in an unfamiliar kingdom, a place where weakness is strength, and humility is victory.
It paints a picture of a nation whose territory encompasses not land but human hearts and whose borders extend beyond the edges of the cosmos.
It depicts a king whose power is not that of the sword-clenching hand, but that of the dying martyr.
And it extends a choice to all who hear: will you continue in the chaos and confusion of rebellion against this reality, or will you submit and enter the Kingdom of Heaven?
The choice is yours.”