Did Jesus Say, “Blessed Are the Poor”? (Luke 6:20)


In Matthew 5:3, Jesus said, “Blessed are the poor, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Is that what Jesus said? Blessed are the poor? No, He said, “Blessed are the poor in spirit.” But you probably hear it the other way more often than you hear it the right way.

“Wwutt?! In Luke 6:20, Jesus said, ‘Blessed are the poor!’ and it does not say ‘the poor in spirit!’ So Jesus did say the poor are blessed by God.”

Take a closer look at that verse. Luke 6:20 says, “And He lifted up His eyes on His disciples, and said: ‘Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God.'” Who is Jesus addressing? His disciples. Therefore, this means, “Blessed are the poor among my disciples. Though you may lack material things, you are rich in heavenly blessings.”

The Bible does not say everyone who is poor receives the kingdom of God. Do all the poor go to heaven? Below what income level? If you’re saved by living in poverty, then the gospel would be meaningless. We are saved by faith in Christ, not our socio-economic level. Rich or poor, everyone needs the gospel.

But no matter how much or how little you have, no matter how popular you are or what you have accomplished, Philippians 3:8 says, “I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For His sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ.”

If you don’t have Jesus, you have nothing. But whoever has Christ has everything, when we understand the text.

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