Then He lifted up His eyes toward His disciples, and said: “Blessed are you poor, for yours is the kingdom of God. Luke 6:20
This is going to sound strange and maybe even hard to believe, but I did not realize that the Beatitudes that Jesus taught His disciples were also written in the book of Luke. I honestly just believed they were listed in Matthew’s gospel and that was it. Certainly, I have read them in Luke before this time, but it never registered with me that this was the same event that gets so much attention in the book of Matthew.
It looks like the passage in Luke is a little different than Matthew’s account, but it is basically the same points since it is the same sermon. It was Jesus first real teaching to the disciples other than what they had learned just by watching Him. He began talking to them about the crowd of people that had gathered to receive healing from Him.
He taught them what it means to be blessed. The word “blessed” is defined as happy, but it is the kind of happiness that comes from the spirit of a person, not from external things or circumstances. It can also mean successful in attaining wholeness and contentment. My own definition of blessed is: Empowered to be successful in all things.
As I read through the points of this sermon, I want to focus on Jesus was teaching His disciples where true joy and satisfaction come from in life. By walking in this world according to these attitudes/principles, we also can walk out our days in today’s world in peace, joy and contentment despite the outward circumstances.
Jesus started this teaching by saying whoever is poor in spirit is happy, content and satisfied with life. He doesn’t say those who are poor in external things and lacking in physical necessities. He is talking about having a bankrupt spirit that recognizes its need for a Savior. When you come to the place in life that you recognize all that you are and all that you have is because of the grace of God and a Savior who loves you, you become determined to trust Him for every breath you take and every move you make. You understand that you have been given life to complete an assignment here in this world and God has given you all the resources you need to fulfill that mission. You no longer believe that you worked hard all your life to accomplish the things you have done. You know that all that you are is because of your heavenly Father that loves you and has led you every step of the way.
The verse goes on to say when you are poor in spirit, you belong to the kingdom of Heaven and that is where your citizenship and home truly are. Even though you are in this world called Earth, you have dual citizenship because you have only been sent here to work for a few years. Your life is lived by the heart of God and His way of living successfully.
Today, I want to encourage you to be poor in spirit. Take some time to talk to your heavenly Father about what He has brought you through in your life so far. Thank Him for all He has given you and all He has led you through. Let Him know that you recognize that His hand is the reason for all you have become so far. Then spend some time talking to Him about what He will lead you to next and thank Him for always being involved in your life even the times when you didn’t realize He was looking. Take some time to meditate what it means to be a citizen of heaven right now in this world even though you are not actually living there yet. Then, tell Him you trust Him to provide all you need to finish the course He has you on today. You are blessed and you are empowered to be successful in all that He has called you to right here and now.
If you are only now recognizing you are poor in spirit and need a Savior, invite Him into your life today. All you need to do is ask Him in and He will fill your life up with peace, joy and contentment as you follow each step He leads. Pray this prayer today or one like it. Jesus will come into your life and enrich the poorness of it.
God in heaven, I know I’m a sinner and I need a Savior. I want to turn away from my sinful life to the life You have planned for me. Please forgive my sins, cleanse me from my past, and make me new today. I know Your Son, Jesus died for me. I believe in my heart that You raised Him from the dead. At this very moment, I accept, confess, and proclaim Jesus as my personal Lord and Savior . . . to be Lord of my life from this day forward. I now have a right relationship with God my Father through this salvation in Jesus. I thank You for giving me Your Holy Spirit to guide me and to empower me to accomplish the things You have planned for my life in Jesus’ name, Amen
Today’s scripture reading: Luke 6:20-23
20 Then He lifted up His eyes toward His disciples, and said: “Blessed are you poor, for yours is the kingdom of God.
21 Blessed are you who hunger now, for you shall be filled. Blessed are you who weep now, for you shall laugh.
22 Blessed are you when men hate you, and when they exclude you, and revile you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of Man’s sake.
23 Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! for indeed your reward is great in heaven, for in like manner their fathers did to the prophets.