The Beatitudes reveal the goal of human existence, the
ultimate end of human acts: God calls us to his own beatitude. This
vocation is addressed to each individual personally, but also to the
Church as a whole, the new people made up of those who have
accepted the promise and live from it in faith.
The New Testament uses several expressions to charac-
terize the beatitude to which God calls man:
— the coming of the Kingdom of God;
— the vision of God: “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall
— entering into the joy of the Lord;
— entering into God’s rest:
There we shall rest and see, we shall see and love, we shall
love and praise. Behold what will be at the end without end.
For what other end do we have, if not to reach the kingdom
which has no end?
God put us in the world to know, to love, and to serve him,
and so to come to paradise. Beatitude makes us “partakers of the
divine nature” and of eternal life.
With beatitude, man enters into
the glory of Christ
and into the joy of the Trinitarian life.
Such beatitude surpasses the understanding and powers
of man. It comes from an entirely free gift of God: whence it is called
supernatural, as is the grace that disposes man to enter into the
“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” It is
true, because of the greatness and inexpressible glory of God,
that “man shall not see me and live,” for the Father cannot
be grasped. But because of God’s love and goodness toward
us, and because he can do all things, he goes so far as to grant
those who love him the privilege of seeing him. . . . For “what
is impossible for men is possible for God.”
20 St. Augustine,
De civ. Dei
22, 30, 5: PL 41, 804.
23 St. Irenaeus,
4, 20, 5: PG 7/1, 1034-1035.