The Proclamation of the Kingdom and the Call to Conversion
What is it to be blessed? What is this word we hear over and over in the Sermon on the Mount and the Sermon on the Plain and all over the Sacred Texts. Grammatically it is to posses a blessing in ones very being. But, what is a blessing? It seems to be an affirmation that what one is doing is pleasing to he who bestows the blessing. It is the beaming smile a father bestows on his son for a job well done. To be blessed is to be pleasing to God. It is His gift of grace uniting us to Him in His very inner life. Blessed is he who keeps the commands of the Lord his God. St. Thomas Aquinas, OP defines Sanctifying grace in this very way. For St. Thomas sanctifying grace is "the grace that makes us pleasing to God." It is His grace that makes us capable of keeping His command and it is following His commands that makes us pleasing to Him. So, the Son calls us to repent of all that which keeps us from receiving this Divine Blessing and then instructs us on how to live out that very Blessing for the sake of our souls and the souls of all God's people.