Woe to You

Luke 6:24–26 (NKJV)

24 “But woe to you who are rich,
For you have received your consolation.
25 Woe to you who are full,
For you shall hunger.
Woe to you who laugh now,
For you shall mourn and weep.
26 Woe to you when all men speak well of you,
For so did their fathers to the false prophets.

Luke 6:24-26

Jesus offered the beatitudes in the Sermon on the Mount in both Matthew and Luke, but only Luke includes the woes found here. They are meant to offer the converse of some of the beatitudes, balancing the blessings with these woes when opposite circumstances and attitudes exist. For instance, “blessed are the poor” is balances by “woe to the rich.” “Blessed are those who hunger” is balanced by “woe to you who are full.” The lessons here are given in four woes. If you are rich now, and have no need for God or His blessings, then you have your security in your riches, but it may not, it will not last. If you are full from eating plenty, you may or will experience lean times ahead. If you have no cares, and laugh in your pleasure, you may mourn and weep not many days ahead. If everyone loves you and lauds you, be careful, for the tide can shift in a moment.

What does all this tell the reader? Don’t get comfortable in your cozy little life that you have built for yourself. Be prepared to follow Christ, even if it costs you some of your creature comforts, for the reward for following Him will far outweigh the momentary pain or suffering you will experience as a follower of Christ. Choose the blessings of Christ over those of the world. Suffer for Him now so that you do not suffer for your sins or complacency later. God has a plan that everyone can and should follow. At times it is counterintuitive, but in the grand scheme of eternity, it is perfect and sublime. Follow Him in discipleship, and the blessings will outweigh the woes.

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