Luke 6:17, 20-26
Jesus came down with the twelve and stood on a stretch of level ground with a great crowd of his disciples and a large number of the people from all Judea and Jerusalem and the coastal region of Tyre and Sidon. And raising his eyes toward his disciples he said: “Blessed are you who are poor, for the kingdom of God is yours. Blessed are you who are now hungry, for you will be satisfied. Blessed are you who are now weeping, for you will laugh. Blessed are you when people hate you, and when they exclude and insult you, and denounce your name as evil on account of the Son of Man. Rejoice and leap for joy on that day! Behold, your reward will be great in heaven. For their ancestors treated the prophets in the same way. But woe to you who are rich, for you have received your consolation. Woe to you who are filled now, for you will be hungry. Woe to you who laugh now, for you will grieve and weep. Woe to you when all speak well of you, for their ancestors treated the false prophets in this way.”
The Beatitudes are eight Blessings from Jesus in His Sermon on the Mount. Each of these blessings begins with the word beati; which translates to “Happy”, “Rich”, or “Blessed”. Many people think that Jesus is talking to all of us about some “other” folks in the world who are less fortunate than we are. But, that couldn’t be further from the Truth. Jesus is speaking the Beatitudes to everyone in this world. He is speaking them directly to you and I. You see, before we get to Heaven, we are all poor, hungry, weeping, hated, excluded, insulted, and denounced, because we are not in Heaven yet. We hunger for love; we strive to leave our poverty; we cry out to the Lord for help; and, often, we are not liked by many. But, we will be Happy, Rich, and Blessed in Heaven where we will be in the Kingdom for Eternity with all of our desires and needs met beyond anything that our imaginations can comprehend today. We will be satisfied; we will laugh; we will rejoice and leap. We will be Kings and Queens Forever! When Jesus referred to John the Baptist in Luke 11:11, He was quick to provide 100% clarity on where we all stand while living in this world, “Truly I tell you, among those born of women there has risen no one greater than John the Baptist. Yet even the least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.” Look into the details of people who have already crossed-over into Heaven; only to be sent back by Jesus. When they share their Journeys, many will tear-up, because they got a brief Glimpse into Eternity – and, they didn’t want to leave. For many, there was a Pure Peace that was unlike anything they’ve ever felt here. And, the music, if they heard any, was Out of this world! They just felt so Good! So, let’s be sure to take heart and remember that we are the Blessed that Jesus was and is talking about. He Promises us Everlasting Life and Happiness with Him in the Kingdom of Heaven and, while this world will challenge us to our limits at times, Jesus will never let it be more than we can bear as He prepares for us our Dwelling Places with Him and His Father for Eternity.