I praise You, Lord, for You are the one who is all-powerful.
Read Luke 7:18–35
Jesus and John the Baptist
18 John’s disciples told him about all these things. Calling two of them, 19 he sent them to the Lord to ask, “Are you the one who is to come, or should we expect someone else?”
20 When the men came to Jesus, they said, “John the Baptist sent us to you to ask, ‘Are you the one who is to come, or should we expect someone else?’”
21 At that very time Jesus cured many who had diseases, sicknesses and evil spirits, and gave sight to many who were blind. 22 So he replied to the messengers, “Go back and report to John what you have seen and heard: The blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy[a] are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is proclaimed to the poor. 23 Blessed is anyone who does not stumble on account of me.”
24 After John’s messengers left, Jesus began to speak to the crowd about John: “What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed swayed by the wind? 25 If not, what did you go out to see? A man dressed in fine clothes? No, those who wear expensive clothes and indulge in luxury are in palaces. 26 But what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet. 27 This is the one about whom it is written:
“‘I will send my messenger ahead of you,
who will prepare your way before you.’[b]
28 I tell you, among those born of women there is no one greater than John; yet the one who is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he.”
29 (All the people, even the tax collectors, when they heard Jesus’ words, acknowledged that God’s way was right, because they had been baptized by John. 30 But the Pharisees and the experts in the law rejected God’s purpose for themselves, because they had not been baptized by John.)
31 Jesus went on to say, “To what, then, can I compare the people of this generation? What are they like? 32 They are like children sitting in the marketplace and calling out to each other:
“‘We played the pipe for you,
and you did not dance;
we sang a dirge,
and you did not cry.’
33 For John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine, and you say, ‘He has a demon.’ 34 The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and you say, ‘Here is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.’ 35 But wisdom is proved right by all her children.”
a Luke 7:22 The Greek word traditionally translated leprosy was used for various diseases affecting the skin.
b Luke 7:27 Mal. 3:1
New International Version (NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectWhat is your definition of a miracle? Ask Jesus to make himself known to you today. Be excited in anticipation!
I can’t remember how many times as a writer I have been advised to “show, don’t tell.” We generally remember things seen much better than things heard or read. Jesus sends John’s disciples back to him in prison to report the powerful images they have witnessed (21).
Remember, this is John the Baptist we are talking about—the one who has himself seen amazing things. Is he trying to force Jesus into a declaration about being the Messiah (19)? Is he just needing reassurance, his captivity causing him to think he has imagined it all? Perhaps he is wondering why Jesus has not come to his rescue.
It is only after the messengers have gone that Jesus talks of John being a prophet and even more than that (26). Those who have been baptized by him, touched by him, realize this. Not so much the Pharisees who haven’t had this personal experience (30).
Do we ever feel that Jesus should be getting us out of our current situation? Do we think he has forgotten us? If we trust him, he will act. But we need to live expectantly, aware that Jesus’ “more than” in our lives might be totally different from how we imagine it.
Imagine the scene. Be there with Jesus as he reminds you of all the miracles he has performed. Think of his working in your life. And praise him.
Lord, may You move in dynamic ways in my life and in the life of my church.