BACKGROUND TO THIS MATERIAL
- The Mount of the Beatitudes overlooks the Sea of Galilee. Tradition has it that this was a site on which Jesus addressed open air gatherings.
- Jesus was a Galilean, who grew up in Nazareth. He was a Jewish teacher (hence addressed as ‘rabbi’) and steeped in the Law or ‘Torah’. In these readings we use the name by which he would have been known – Yeshua ben-Yosef. (‘Jesus’ is a Latinised version of his name)
- His teachings were not in any way repudiations of this ‘Torah’, but looked at the implications of Torah for his day and audience.
- Every one of his axioms – whether offered as propositions like the Beatitudes or much more teasingly like the parables – was not delivered with the idea of scuttling discussion but stimulating it.