A poor farmer followed Jesus. He went out into the wilderness with him. He expected a miracle. He expected a revolution. He heard that Jesus was the long expected king. The Messiah.
Time had been rough for the farmer. In fact, times had been rough for all Israel. The farmer, like all of his friends resented the dreaded Romans. They had the nerve to claim rule over the Holy Land! They had the audacity to overtax God’s holy people. The farmer knew that there would arise a promised one who would drive the dreaded Romans out. And, now…he’s here. This Jesus. He’s going to do it.
So, the farmer walked away from his daily work to follow this man. He became a disciple. He was going to learn from him. And, now the teacher has sat down to teach and to explain his kingdom. His reign. The reign of God.
And, the first words out of his mouth hit the farmer like a ton of bricks.
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
You see, the farmer had come to hear about God’s reign. About the reign of the heavens. About this man Jesus’ inauguration of that reign. And, the first words out of the King’s mouth are a blessing that hit the farmer right in his heart.
You see, the farmer, like all of his friends was poor. They had been working subsistence jobs all their lives. They had been waiting patiently for God’s Messiah, And, his first words are…the kingdom is yours. It belongs to you poor, humble, contrite people who have been beaten down and trodden down and worked to the ground.
It belongs to you humble followers. It’s yours.
And, so it begins. The farmer hangs on every word. It was what his heart longed for.