Luke 6:17-26 by Pastor Dan Walker
Many think that blessing in life happens by random chance. Jesus teaches us that blessing comes through choice not chance. God gives every person a choice in life to choose a blessing and not a curse, to choose life and not death. Everyone on the planet is either living a blessed life or a cursed life. The good news is that even if you're not living in blessing now, you can choose to move from curse to blessing by believing in Jesus. Discover more in this Sunday's message How to Live a Blessed Life.
Duration:34 mins 21 secs

Today, we’re going to talk about “How to Live a Blessed Life.” How many here want to live a blessed life? I’m sure that you all do. I think just about everyone wants to live a blessed life. What is a blessed life? A blessed life is a life under God’s favor and protection.

Does everyone live a blessed life? The answer is no. Many people do not live a blessed life. Some think that a blessed life is just a matter of chance. Happens to some, but not others randomly. The Bible teaches that a blessed life is not a matter of chance, but a matter of choice. Your choice. Each person can choose whether they live a blessed life or not.

Deuteronomy 30:19b-20a (ESV) … I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore choose life, that you and your offspring may live, loving the LORD your God, obeying his voice and holding fast to him, for he is your life …

You see God sets before every person the choice to chose life or death, blessing or curse. How does a person choose to live a blessed life according to this verse? You choose to love God, to obey God and to hold fast to Him. If we read the entire passage, we see how a person chooses a cursed life. They choose to turn away from God, to not listen to and obey Him, and to worship idols.

In case you’re not sure what choice to make, God tells us that the right choice is to choose life, to choose blessing. Everyone on the planet is living one of two kinds of lives, either a blessed life or a cursed life. But the good news is that those who are not living a blessed life can change and make the choice to live a blessed life.

If you’re not sure you’re living a blessed life, I’m going to give you an opportunity at the end of this message to choose blessing. If you are living a blessed life by following Jesus, it’s important to realize that there are degrees of blessing. Whatever blessing you are experiencing in life, there is more blessing available. The amount of blessing a person experiences in living a blessed life is not by chance.

What is the key to see blessing increase in your life? The closer you walk with Jesus, the more you will be blessed. If you wander away from Jesus, your blessing will decrease.

Today, we want to unlock the teaching of Jesus on how to live a blessed life. And we’re going to learn how to see that blessing increase in our lives. And how to share God’s blessing with others. You see, God wants everyone to live a blessed life. That’s why He gives everyone a choice to choose blessing.

Healing blessings come by Jesus’ power

Luke 6:17 (ESV) And he came down with them and stood on a level place, with a great crowd of his disciples and a great multitude of people from all Judea and Jerusalem and the seacoast of Tyre and Sidon,

Jesus had just spent the night on the mountain praying before He chose the apostles. Now Jesus came down with His apostles and found a great crowd of people. Some in the crowd were disciples of Jesus and others were coming to see Jesus for the first time. Why did this great crowd gather to see Jesus?

Luke 6:18 (ESV) who came to hear him and to be healed of their diseases. And those who were troubled with unclean spirits were cured.

The crowd came to see Jesus for three reasons. First of all, they came to hear Him speak about God’s truth. His reputation as a teacher of God’s Word had spread far and wide. Secondly, they came to be healed of physical sicknesses of all kinds. Finally, they came to be delivered from oppression from demonic spirits. The people came to have Jesus meet their needs. Needs of understanding God, being healed and delivered. And the result was what they were looking for. They learned, were healed and delivered from evil spirits. We learn more about Jesus’ healing ministry in the next verse.

Luke 6:19 (ESV) And all the crowd sought to touch him, for power came out from him and healed them all.

On this occasion, it seems that the way Jesus was healing was when people touched him. When someone would touch Jesus, the power of the Holy Spirit would heal them. Why did the crowd seek to touch him? They believed that if they touched him, they would be healed. They had faith in the healing power of Jesus.

As we study the Gospels, we see that Jesus healed in many different ways. This is not the only way that Jesus healed, but on this day, healing blessings came as people reached out in faith to touch Jesus.

What draws people to Jesus today? It should be the same things. A hunger to learn the truth of God’s word Desire to be healed of the hurts of life, both physical and spiritual These same things are what should draw us closer to Jesus as His followers. It’s easy to get in ruts in life, where we don’t seek after Jesus, we think we can handle things.

So, we think we know the Bible, so we don’t need to read it anymore. We think we can handle our needs in life without supernatural help. Rather, as we’ll see in a moment in Jesus’ teaching, we need to recognize our great need of Jesus in every aspect of our lives, especially healing. Healing blessings come by Jesus’ power as we reach out to Him in faith. As we help others to reach out to Jesus in faith, they will be blessed as well. Not only do healing blessings come by Jesus’ power, …

Blessing comes in Jesus’ presence

Luke 6:20 (ESV) And he lifted up his eyes on his disciples, and said: “Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God.

Jesus now begins to teach as He first addresses his disciples, those who are his followers. This is the first of three blessings. Each blessing is two parts. The first is a current condition. The second is a future or eternal condition.

Why are the poor blessed? First of all, we need to answer the question, who are the poor? Is it a blessing to simply have no money? No, certainly not. The same blessing in Matthew is for the poor in spirit. The poor are those who know that they have needs in life and are thus dependent on God.

Remember that these blessing are not directed to the crowd, but to his disciples. They are poor in the present age, but they will begin receiving the riches of the kingdom in this age and completely in eternity.

Luke 6:21 (ESV) “Blessed are you who are hungry now, for you shall be satisfied. “Blessed are you who weep now, for you shall laugh.

Another state that leads to blessing for a disciple of Jesus is hunger. Hunger for what? There are certainly those who have suffered hunger in reaching the lost. Yet, to be hungry is to know that you are lacking something in life. In Matthew 5, it says hunger and thirst for righteousness, that is hunger for God. God promises that he will satisfy those who hunger for the things of God.

Weeping over the things that move God’s heart brings blessing. Jesus wept. God will console and bring laughter in this life. Weeping will be completely removed in heaven, a place of joy.

Luke 6:22 (ESV) “Blessed are you when people hate you and when they exclude you and revile you and spurn your name as evil, on account of the Son of Man!

When followers of Jesus are persecuted, they are blessed. Persecution comes in many forms. Persecution is endured ill treatment by others because you are a follower of Jesus. How should we respond to persecution, or I believe being poor or hungry?

Luke 6:23 (ESV) Rejoice in that day, and leap for joy, for behold, your reward is great in heaven; for so their fathers did to the prophets.

We are to rejoice when what seems like cursing has come upon us for Jesus’ sake. Oftentimes, God will bring reward in this life. But even if not, those who follow Jesus will have a great reward in heaven. That is something to rejoice about even in this life. Each of these blessings comes in Jesus’ presence.

So, what doesn’t seem like a blessing in this life, is a blessing if you’re following Jesus. It is a blessing because being poor in spirit, being hungry for God and being persecuted will be rewarded, both in this life and the next. Blessing comes by getting closer to Jesus. Blessing comes in the presence of Jesus.

You can be blessed in this life, but the greatest blessing will come in eternity with Jesus. Blessing comes to those who are seeking God’s kingdom first. When you understand what blessing in this life are all about, you won’t grumble and complain even in difficult circumstances. You will rejoice, because you are blessed as you follow Jesus.

Curses come in Jesus’ absence

Luke 6:24 (ESV) “But woe to you who are rich, for you have received your consolation.

Each of the previous four blessings are now reversed with four woes or curses. Woe to the rich in this world, those who think they have no needs. Is it wrong to be rich? Not if you use your wealth for God’s kingdom. Yet, Jesus said it was difficult for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God. The rich in this world who don’t know Jesus have received all they’re going to get. In the coming age, they will spend eternity in hell and can’t take their riches with them.

Luke 6:25 (ESV) “Woe to you who are full now, for you shall be hungry. “Woe to you who laugh now, for you shall mourn and weep.

Those who chase after filling their own appetites apart from God, will be hungry in eternity. Those who chase after entertainment and laughter rather than the things of God, will mourn and weep in hell.

Luke 6:26 (ESV) “Woe to you, when all people speak well of you, for so their fathers did to the false prophets.

It is not a blessing when everyone speaks well of you, it is a curse. Those who live godly lives for Jesus will be persecuted. False prophets only speak things that people want to here, rather than God’s Word. Many people love the teaching of false prophets, just as they did in the Old Testament. People who appear to be blessed in this life without Jesus are actually cursed. Their eternity will bring their judgement.

As we study Jesus, he is teaching that there will be a reversal in eternity from this life. Those who are rich in this life are regarded as blessed. But the majority who don’t know Jesus will be absolutely poor in eternity. Those who are full and have everything anyone could want in this life, will be lacking of everything in eternity. And so on, with the rest of the woes. Curses come in Jesus’ absence.

The take away is that we, as followers of Jesus, ought to be living for eternity. What that means is that in everything that we do in life, we should be following Jesus. Everything we do in life should be for the benefit of God’s kingdom, not our own kingdom. In this life, we are to be servants of Jesus. In the next, we will reign as kings in His kingdom.

How to live a blessed life? Follow Jesus in everything you do, do everything for Him. You will be blessed here and now and completely in eternity.