1 Now it came to pass, when Jesus finished commanding His twelve disciples, that He departed from there to teach and to preach in their cities.
[Commissioning them to heal and to teach]
2 And when John had heard in prison about the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples 3 and said to Him, "Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?"
[What did John hear about the works of Christ.
Luke 7 11 Now it happened, the day after, that He went into a city called Nain; and many of His disciples went with Him, and a large crowd. 12 And when He came near the gate of the city, behold, a dead man was being carried out, the only son of his mother; and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the city was with her. 13 When the Lord saw her, He had compassion on her and said to her, "Do not weep." 14 Then He came and touched the open coffin, and those who carried him stood still. And He said, "Young man, I say to you, arise." 15 So he who was dead sat up and began to speak. And He presented him to his mother.
16 Then fear came upon all, and they glorified God, saying, "A great prophet has risen up among us"; and, "God has visited His people." 17 And this report about Him went throughout all Judea and all the surrounding region. 18 Then the disciples of John reported to him concerning all these things. 19 And John, calling two of his disciples to him, sent them to Jesus, saying, "Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?"
20 When the men had come to Him, they said, "John the Baptist has sent us to You, saying, 'Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?'" 21 And that very hour He cured many of infirmities, afflictions, and evil spirits; and to many blind He gave sight.
So here again we see Luke giving us more of a chronology, the sequence of events, to help us understand. So if John had experienced such great things in his life, and he heard about the great things Jesus was doing, then why did he doubt, why was he asking for confirmation?
- John was a miracle Baby his mother Elizabeth was past the age of child bearing
- An angel appeared to his father Zacharias in the temple to foretell John's birth
- His father was struck dumb when he doubted
- John received the Holy Spirit when he was still in the womb
- He lived his live as a Nazarite.
- He Baptized Jesus and saw him anointed with God's spirit
But then John was arrested for telling Harod it was unlawful for him to take his brother's wife (his brother was not dead). So Harod had him put in jail. Some of his disciples had begun to follow Jesus but a few stayed with John to care for his needs. But Jesus was not taking the throne of David as some expected. He just kept teaching, and healing, and training his disciples. So circumstances opened the door to doubt.]
4 Jesus answered and said to them, "Go and tell John the things which you hear and see: 5
The blind see and the lame walk; the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear; the dead are raised up and the poor have the gospel preached to them. 6 And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me."
[ If you have a chain reference or study Bible verse 5 will refer to Isaiah
5 Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened,
And the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped.
Then the lame shall leap like a deer,
And the tongue of the dumb sing.
For waters shall burst forth in the wilderness,
And streams in the desert.
1 "The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me,
Because the LORD has anointed Me
To preach good tidings to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives,
And the opening of the prison to those who are bound;
Jesus answers this way so that John's confidence would be in the word of the Lord, not in the circumstance of the day. Remember Christ means anointed one, this is prophecy about him]
7 As they departed, Jesus began to say to the multitudes concerning John: "What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken by the wind? 8 But what did you go out to see? A man clothed in soft garments? Indeed, those who wear soft clothing are in kings' houses. 9 But what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I say to you, and more than a prophet. 10 For this is he of whom it is written:
' Behold, I send My messenger before Your face,
Who will prepare Your way before You.'
11 "Assuredly, I say to you, among those born of women there has not risen one greater than John the Baptist; but he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. 12 And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force. 13 For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John. 14 And if you are willing to receive it, he is Elijah who is to come. 15 He who has ears to hear, let him hear!
16 "But to what shall I liken this generation? It is like children sitting in the marketplaces and calling to their companions, 17 and saying:
' We played the flute for you,
And you did not dance;
We mourned to you,
And you did not lament.'
18 For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, 'He has a demon.' 19 The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, 'Look, a glutton and a winebibber, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!' But wisdom is justified by her children."
[Jesus refused to play their religious games. So many people are like this today. They want Jesus to conform to their desires. Liberation Theology says Jesus must conform to my political goals. Prosperity Theology says Jesus must make me healthy, wealthy, and happy. But these both ignore the sovereignty of God. They use a half truth that "Jesus wants to bless you", but forget what that might look like in a fallen world. Let me give you an example:
READ – Set yourself free
This represents a religion I call Opraism, where what matters most is how you feel about the circumstances in your life. But the Bible teaches us that the treasure of heaven is God himself, not your material desires. Contrast that with what Jesus said.
Luke 6 22 Blessed are you when men hate you, And when they exclude you,
And revile you, and cast out your name as evil, For the Son of Man's sake.
23 Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! For indeed your reward is great in heaven,
For in like manner their fathers did to the prophets. 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.
Do you see the difference? If we equate God's blessing with life's circumstances, then Satan can use that to create doubt. "Life is hard, does that mean God doesn't care about me?"
Matthew 14 tells us that at Herod's wine soaked birthday party, his step daughter did an erotic dance that so excited him he promised to give her anything. Her mother Herodias
told her to ask for John's head. So Herod beheaded John the Baptist and put his head on a platter.]
32 Indeed the hour is coming, yes, has now come, that you will be scattered, each to his own, and will leave Me alone. And yet I am not alone, because the Father is with Me. 33 These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world."
Modern example of doubt:
Darwinian evolution, the idea that all species of animal evolve from a common ancestor, is also called macro evolution. Micro evolution is just speciation, removing variability from an animal family to yield a new species, this is how you make different breeds of dog, yet they all came from a wolf like ancestor that was still canine, just another kind of dog. No matter how much variability you remove, you can never make a dog into a cat, a horse, a bird, or anything that is not obviously of the same kind as the Bible teaches. The reason is they simply don't have the DNA, the genetic code, to make anything other than a dog, this is genetic science.
In 1980, Anthropologist Roger Lewin attended a conference in Chicago. He was quoted in the Journal Science saying "The central question of the Chicago conference was whether the mechanism's of micro evolution could be extrapolated to explain the phenomenon of macro evolution – The answer can be given as a clear no.
Yet for 50 years this is exactly the deception that that schools have been teaching, to make people doubt the Genesis account of God as the creator of man, woman, and each animal kind. For if God is not the creator, then he has no authority over our lives. Men can decide their own morality. There is no moral absolute, and most of all there is no judgment. Doubt is still one of Satan's favorite tools.
Genesis says that life began by the word of God. Natural science says everything must be explained by what we observe today. Well genetic science is the best thing to happen to creationist since the Bible.
What are all living things made of – from collections of proteins.
How do you get proteins – assembled from amino acids as instructed by DNA.
How do you get DNA – chain of small 3 part units (gene pairs) linked by enzymes
How do you get enzymes – folded structure of proteins
So how does science explain the simultaneous evolution of protein, DNA, and enzymes? None of these 3 can exist without the other 2, and life cannot exist without all 3.
Dr. Paul Davies, professor of Astro-Biology (origin of life) at Az. St. University says
"How did stupid atoms, spontaneously write their own software, and where did the very peculiar form of information needed to get the first living cell up and running come from? Nobody knows." Translation – the origin of life is supernatural, created by God.