Luke 7:18-35 by Pastor Dan Walker
Wherever Jesus went, He told people to repent for the kingdom of heaven was near. Jesus' ministry began to bring heaven to earth. The evidence was people healed, delivered from demons, saved from their sins and raised from the dead. Jesus instructed His followers to do the same, to bring the power of heaven to the earth. Learn how you can combat the evil in our world by bringing the power of heaven down in this important message.
Duration:37 mins 56 secs

Our hearts were torn this week as we saw the story of the elementary school children killed in Texas. It was a stark reminder that Satan and his demons are still active spreading evil. It was a reminder that we live in a fallen world where evil stalks. What can we do about the evil in the world?

I’ve entitled today’s message “Bringing Heaven to Earth.” God desires to use you and me to bring heaven to earth. Back in the garden of Eden, God gave Adam and Eve a promise.

Genesis 3:15 (ESV) I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.”

The promise was that an offspring of the woman, a human being, would bruise or crush the serpent’s head, that is Satan’s head. All through the Old Testament, the prophets spoke of a coming Messiah. A Messiah who would defeat evil and bring heaven to earth. Finally after thousands of years, the Messiah came, Jesus Christ, the anointed one. When He came, He spoke of the kingdom of heaven.

Matthew 4:17 (ESV) From that time Jesus began to preach, saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

Other translations say that the kingdom of heaven is near. What that meant was that the supernatural power of heaven was breaking into our world for the first time. Heaven was invading earth and driving out evil in people’s lives. Jesus taught us to pray in …

Matthew 6:10 (ESV) Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.

We are to pray that the kingdom of heaven would come to this earth so that God’s will would be done on earth as it is perfectly done in heaven. The process of the kingdom of heaven coming began in Jesus’ ministry and continues to this day. If you are a believer today, then you also have been authorized by Jesus to bring heaven to earth through your life. Then end of the Bible tells us when the process of heaven coming down to earth will be complete.

Revelation 21:2 (ESV) And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.

Ultimately at the return of Christ, heaven will come down and all evil will be removed from the earth as heaven merges with earth. 

Today, we want to better understand how we can make a difference in our world. Making a difference by bringing heaven to earth in our own lives. A difference that will impact eternity. So let’s look more closely at how Jesus was bringing the kingdom of heaven near.

Jesus brings God’s power to earth

Luke 7:20 (ESV) And when the men had come to him [Jesus], they said, “John the Baptist has sent us to you, saying, ‘Are you the one who is to come, or shall we look for another?’”

John the Baptist was the last of the Old Testament prophets. His coming to prepare the way for the Messiah had been prophesied by Isaiah the prophet. After John had pointed out Jesus as the Messiah, the lamb of God, he was imprisoned by the Romans. In prison, John sent messengers to Jesus inquiring if he really was the Messiah.

Most likely John had some doubts about Jesus being the Messiah as he was in prison. If Jesus was truly the Messiah, why was he in prison? If Jesus was truly the Messiah, why wasn’t he overthrowing the Romans? Let’s see how Jesus answered John’s question.

Luke 7:21 (ESV) In that hour he healed many people of diseases and plagues and evil spirits, and on many who were blind he bestowed sight.

Jesus didn’t speak at first, but just released the healing power of God. People with diseases, injuries, demonic spirits and blindness were all healed. Jesus, the Messiah had not come to overthrow governments or leaders. He had come to bring healing from the curse of sin to individual people. Those who would put their faith in Him. He came to release people from the oppression of evil spirits. After Jesus demonstrated God’s power …

Luke 7:22-23 (ESV) And he answered them, “Go and tell John what you have seen and heard: the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, the poor have good news preached to them. And blessed is the one who is not offended by me.”

Jesus is describing his own ministry and quoting from the prophet Isaiah 35. Isaiah speaks of the Messiah coming to save His people. When He comes, He will heal the blind, the deaf, the lame and the mute. Jesus had done all that and more. He had cleansed the leper and raised the dead. And He was preaching the Gospel to all those who would listen. In other words, Jesus’ words and actions showed that He was the Messiah.

No one ever before had done the things that Jesus had already done showing God’s healing power. Jesus adds that there is a blessing on those who recognize Him for who He was, the Messiah. Jesus’ primary message was the same as John’s:  Repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. Jesus was bringing God’s power to earth the response required was for people to repent.

What was Jesus really doing as the Messiah? The prophet Isaiah spoke of His mission. Jesus’ mission was to bring restoration and healing to people destroyed by their own sin and the attacks of Satan. Jesus came to ultimately restore mankind to a relationship with God for all who would believe in Him.

What does that have to do with us today in 2022? Jesus’ mission and power is the same today as it was 2000 years ago. Jesus now works through His Spirit and His church to bring God’s power to earth. His healing power is available to all who believe that He still heals today. His saving power is available to all who believe that He still saves today. His delivering power if available to all who believe that He still delivers today.

How can you receive His power into your own life? Through prayers of faith, both your prayers and the prayers of other believers in the church. Jesus brings God’s power to earth.

Jesus brings the kingdom of God

Luke 7:26 (ESV) What then did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet.

Jesus begins to talk about the ministry of John the Baptist. John was a prophet, but He had a special mission. A mission that no other Old Testament prophet had.

Luke 7:27 (ESV) This is he of whom it is written, “‘Behold, I send my messenger before your face, who will prepare your way before you.’

Jesus quotes the prophet Malachi to describe John the Baptist’s mission. John was the prepare the way for Jesus’ ministry. John prepared the way by calling people to repentance and to a baptism of repentance. John prepared the way by telling the people that he baptized with water, but Jesus would baptize with the Holy Spirit. John prepared the way by baptizing Jesus and pointing Him out as the lamb of God. John the Baptist had a special mission to usher in the long awaited Messiah.

Luke 7:28 (ESV) I tell you, among those born of women none is greater than John. Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he.”

Jesus was saying that in the Old Testament, there was none greater than John. Not Abraham, Moses, King David or any of the prophets was greater than John. But now, Jesus was bringing in the kingdom of God.

One enters the kingdom of God, not through being born of woman, but by being born again by the Holy Spirit. Thus the least in this new kingdom is greater than John. Greater in what way? Greater because of the indwelling Holy Spirit. Greater in the gifts of the Spirit that channel the power of the Kingdom. Greater in being part of the church, the body of Christ. With Jesus, the kingdom of God has broken into our world and changed it forever.

We don’t talk about the kingdom nearly enough. Jesus talked about the kingdom of God or kingdom of heaven all the time. The word kingdom is used in the New Testament 160 times, that’s a lot. Jesus is the King of the Kingdom or the Lord of the Kingdom. Those who believe in Him are citizens of that kingdom.

In fact, those who believe in Jesus are His slaves and He is our master. What He says, we must obey, for He has purchased us with His blood. Jesus taught us that we must seek His kingdom first in our lives. As we make His kingdom first, He releases the Kingdom’s power and blessings into our lives. The benefits of the kingdom come to those who believe in and obey King Jesus.

Not only are believers servants in the kingdom, we are also soldiers in the kingdom. As soldiers we are at war with the powers of Satan that seek to kill and destroy people. Each day, remind yourself that you are part of this eternal kingdom that will last forever. Jesus brought the power of the kingdom near and …

We are to bring heaven to earth

Luke 7:31 (ESV) “To what then shall I compare the people of this generation, and what are they like?

Jesus then began to talk about the people of the generation that He lived in. Contrary to what we might think, by and large, the people of Jesus’ generation did not believe in Him. They did not enter the kingdom of God by being born again. They did not receive God’s Word through John the Baptist.

Luke 7:33 (ESV) For John the Baptist has come eating no bread and drinking no wine, and you say, ‘He has a demon.’

The majority of people criticized and mocked John the Baptist. They did not repent, nor did they allow themselves to be baptized by him.

Luke 7:34-35 (ESV) The Son of Man has come eating and drinking, and you say, ‘Look at him! A glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ Yet wisdom is justified by all her children.”

Jesus on the other hand, was quite different than John. Yet the people rejected Him for the opposite reasons they rejected John. Unbelief really makes no sense. The majority of the Jewish people of Jesus’ time or today, do not accept Jesus as the Messiah. No one can be saved with recognizing Jesus as the Messiah, the lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.

Jesus concludes his observations of the people of his generation. He says that wisdom is justified by all her children. People who are wise understand that both John the Baptist and Jesus were sent from God and carried out His mission. Those that rejected both John and Jesus were not wise, but foolish.

Jesus is calling on us today to not be foolish like Jesus’ generation, but to be wise. Wise people obey the call of both John and Jesus to repent. Wise people put their trust in Jesus to forgive their sins and to be born again into the kingdom of God. Wise people take up Jesus’ mission as their own. They do their part by obeying King Jesus to bring heaven to earth. When wise people pray thy kingdom come thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven, they don’t stop with prayer.

They believe and follow Jesus by doing the same things that He did. They preach the Gospel, they heal the sick, they cast out demons and they call on people to repent. Wise people who follow the King bring heaven to earth. Wherever they go, the kingdom draws near and brings healing to people. We are to bring heaven to earth, as we follow Jesus.

So when we see the news of violence and senseless evil, what are we to do? First of all, we can pray for those directly affected by the evil. Pray that they would find hope and comfort in Jesus. Then we ourselves find hope in the Lord. We have a part to play in bringing heaven to earth.

You can be a channel of God’s power to those around you. You can bring the kingdom of God near by obeying the King You can bring some of heaven to earth. By praying your will be done on earth as it is heaven. And by seeking first God’s kingdom in all that you do.