Those who are persecuted
For righteousness’ sake,
Theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
μακάριοι οἱ δεδιωγμένοι ἕνεκεν δικαιοσύνης, ὅτι αὐτῶν ἐστιν ἡ βασιλεία τῶν οὐρανῶν.
The happy, blessed, and fortunate ones (μακάριοι) would be those who were being persecuted for the sake of righteousness (οἱ δεδιωγμένοι ἕνεκεν δικαιοσύνης). The followers of Jesus would be persecuted. The reward for these righteous ones would be the kingdom of heaven (ὅτι αὐτῶν ἐστιν ἡ βασιλεία τῶν οὐρανῶν). After each blessed action, there was a reward. Righteousness, like in the Old Testament, was a key characteristic for those who would enter the kingdom of heaven. Acting right, following the law, was at the center or the heart of being a just or righteous person.