Luke 6:20-23 – Looking at his disciples, he said: "Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God. Blessed are you who hunger now, for you will be satisfied. Blessed are you who weep now, for you will laugh. Blessed are you when men hate you, when they exclude you and insult you and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man. "Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven. For that is how their fathers treated the prophets.
Poverty… hunger… mourning… and being rejected as evil, are interesting prerequisites for receiving blessing and reward. Yet, that’s exactly what this “sermon on the plain” teaches! Similar to Matthew’s “Sermon on the Mount,” it’s very clear that Jesus was not referring to PHYSICAL poverty and hunger. The beatitudes of the Kingdom emphasize poverty of spirit, sorrow for wrongdoing and hunger for righteousness. The blessings of God’s kingdom go to those meek persons who recognize their spiritual depravity, and they hunger enough for righteousness that they actually mourn and grieve over their impoverished and sinful condition. These blessings that God promises to contrite souls are: citizenship in the Kingdom of God, and a spirit of joy that can’t help but sing, “Hallelujah, I have found Him whom my soul so long has craved! Jesus satisfies my longing; through His blood I now am saved!” Soul satisfaction, joy unspeakable and full of glory – these are the blessings that belong to the humble poor who desperately hunger for righteousness and weep over their condition.
This path of humility, which includes hunger for righteousness and sorrow for sin, however, is not the route that people typically travel in their pursuit of happiness. The broad way to find happiness is filled with souls that soon fall into even more sinful deceptions – deceptions that may provide temporary pleasure and satisfaction but wind up only creating more sorrow and destruction. This popular expressway often contributes to an attitude that causes those who cruise that road to despise the humble souls who travel the straight and narrow!
“Blessed are you when men hate you, when they exclude you and insult you and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man.” Jesus points out that this foul treatment actually represents something greater than being hated, excluded, insulted and rejected. This is a sign for great rejoicing because you have become a fellow citizen with the prophets who will inherit a rich reward in heaven! So when you feel you’ve lost your way, gotten on the wrong path, then swallow your pride, humble yourself, sorrow over waywardness, acknowledge your sin, seek God’s counsel and His righteousness, let Him satisfy your soul and renew your joy.
- Meet together with at least 1 or 2 other believers to enter the Throne Room of Grace.
- Thank God for blessing that favors the humble and meek!
- Pray for the Good News families of the week: Bob & Alison St.James (Matt, Kelly), Steve & Allison Worrall, Alberto & Kasandra Aneses, Alberto Jr.
- Give thanks for the joy that comes from knowing Christ and being included in His forever family!
- Give thanks to God for His blessings that satisfy the longings of our soul.
- Pray that those who travel the broad way of destruction will come to their senses, realize the error of their way, understand their great need and pursue the way that leads to life!
- Give thanks for faith that trusts God even when others despise you and reject you because of that faith!
- Give thanks that God will keep His promise of reward in heaven to those who are rejected by men on account of their faithfulness to Christ!
Prayer Challenge: Pray that you may live in harmony with others, that you will be sympathetic, love as dear family, and that you may be compassionate and humble. Don’t repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing. For, "Whoever would love life and see good days must keep his tongue from evil and his lips from deceitful speech. He must turn from evil and do good; he must seek peace and pursue it. For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their prayer…” – 1 Peter 3:8-12