The Poor In Spirit

“God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.”

Matthew 5:3

Photo by John-Mark Smith on

Contrary to popular belief, being poor in spirit will not make you “poor” or helpless. In fact, it has nothing to do with what you have but what Jesus gives to you. In addition, it is all about your growth as a believer and follower of Christ.

In Matthew chapter 5, Jesus says that He came for the poor in spirit. Thusly, I want to submit to you that Jesus is not leaving anyone out when He says this. He died for all and gives all an opportunity to come to Him (John 3:16). Trouble is, not all will choose Jesus, but some will choose to follow after other things.

Nevertheless, God is sovereign and has the authority to expect certain things of His children. With that, this is why Jesus says He came for the “poor in spirit” in Matthew chapter 5. He addresses all who are willing to become “poor in spirit”. This is something that can only happen by making the decision to confess Christ, as Lord, and to become saved.

Getting back to chapter 5, Jesus mentions several other Beatitudes (Christian characteristics one should have), but I am only going to mention the “poor in spirit” today. When we examine who the poor in spirit are, we find that it has nothing to do with sadness or lacking money. Instead, it has to do with lacking conceitedness, self-reliance, and self-control over your own life. It is being in submission to the will of God.

“You, however, are controlled not by the flesh, but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ.”

Romans 8:9

When you are “poor”, you allow God to decrease your prideful spirit and increase His Holy Spirit in you (John 3:30). You relinquish control and realize you can’t navigate this world alone. You seek God in all your ways (Proverbs 3:5-6). As a result, you become more humble. This is a daily process and not a one shot deal. Here is a video about being poor in spirit.

I emphasize the word decrease, because the body will always have some pride on this side of glory. How much depends on how much (or little) we are submitting our will to God. Please read Romans 7:15-25 which addresses the war of the flesh and how God frees us through Jesus. I will leave you with this verse:

All these things my hand has made, and so all these things came to be, declares the LORD. But this is the one to whom I will look: he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at my word.”

Isaiah 66:2