1 And it came to pass, when Jesus had made an end of commanding his twelve disciples, he departed thence to teach and to preach in their cities.
2 Now when John had heard in the prison the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples,
<b>John was imprisoned by Herod because he called attention to his adulterous affair, the seduction of his brother’s wife. Discouraged at not seeing the kingdom established, John sent a message, by two of his own disciples, to Jesus.</b>
3 And said unto him, Art thou he that should come, or do we look for another?
<b>John was discouraged being in prison and having heard from his disciples news of what Jesus was doing (Luke 7:18). He asked if there was 'another of a different kind.' because Jesus was not acting as John expected. John anticipated a message of judgment from the Messiah, instead Jesus offered salvation to all.</b>
4 Jesus answered and said unto them, Go and shew John again those things which ye do hear and see:
5 The blind receive their sight, 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.
<b>This was fulfillment of (Isaiah 61:1) and proclaimed by Jesus in the temple (Luke 4:18) it caused outrage (Luke 4:28-29) and exposed another tactic of satan to cause people to stumble and fall away because of a shallow receiving of the word (Luke 8:13).</b>
6 And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me.
<b>Two major device of satan (offense and persecution). detailed in (Matt 13:18-23 and mark 4:13-20). Harbouring offense is a major stumbling block (Mat 13:21) to receiving the blessing (the empowerment) of God (Eph 1:3). John could not understand why he was being persecuted (Mark 4:17) and in prison after the glorious days of the multitudes coming to baptism. Persecution and doubt are two major devices to prevent walking in the fruit of the Word of God (Mark 4:20)</b>
7 And as they departed, Jesus began to say unto the multitudes concerning John, What went ye out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken with the wind?
<b>Jesus gave his testimony approving John's life and ministry. He affirms that he was a man not easily shaken in his faith or dedication to God by opposition or the threat of death which hung over him.</b>
8 But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in soft raiment? behold, they that wear soft clothing are in kings' houses.
9 But what went ye out for to see? A prophet? yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet.
10 For this is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.
11 Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that 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 suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.
<b>Before the time of John the Baptist, the only way to approach God was through the priesthood and by laws and sacrifices.
In Jesus' time, this had become ritualised in which the heart of the people was far from God (Mt 15:3-9). When John the Baptist came in the power of the Spirit (2Co 3:6), preaching a change of mind and change of ways (Mt 3:8) Multitudes, who previously were not actively seeking God, began flocking to the wilderness to be baptized by John. They were truly "pressing in" to the kingdom of heaven, overcoming any obstacle or opposition posed by laws, traditions, unbelief, or any power satan threw at them, in order to receive the message that John preached. They were forcefully pressing in to the kingdom of heaven. Today, as in the days of John the Baptist, satan is opposing the preaching of the Gospel, and only those who are violently resolved to receive God's best will have it (Jas 4:7).</b>
13 For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John.
14 And if ye will receive it, this is Elias, which was for to come.
15 He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.
<b>Rom (10:17) Faith comes by hearing the word, Jesus refers to hearts that are teachable and able to receive spiritual truth. Spiritual truths can only be received if we incline our ears unto God's Word (Pr 4:20). What we give attention to is what we receive. Paying attention to other than the word of God causes us to become dull of hearing (spiritually) or hardened toward those things (Heb 5:11 amp).</b>
16 But whereunto shall I liken this generation? It is like unto children sitting in the markets, and calling unto their fellows,
<b>Hardened of their hearts and refusal to listen caused them to be un teachable.
It was necessary for them to be F.A.S.T.
Jesus compares them to a group of sulky and awkward children who did not want to play what the others were playing. </b>
17 And saying, We have piped unto you, and ye have not danced; we have mourned unto you, and ye have not lamented.
18 For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, He hath a devil.
19 The Son of man came eating and drinking, and they say, Behold a man gluttonous, and a winebibber, a friend of publicans and sinners. But wisdom is justified of her children.
<b>Those who are walking in the wisdom of God (children of wisdom) will be able to see the truth that John did not have a devil and that Jesus was not a glutton or a winebibber.
Those who twist the facts are showing that they do not have "ears to hear" (Mt 11:15).</b>
20 Then began he to upbraid the cities wherein most of his mighty works were done, because they repented not:
<b>The cities which had witnessed Christ greatest works, were beginning to reject the Gospel (Heb 2:3.) Even though He had preached and confirmed his word with miraculous signs in many local cities, they had not repented. The had failed to respond and receive the gospel. To reject the Gospel would mean that they would walk outside of God and His Word. The sowing of the word is also sown by satan who sows the opposite of faith which is fear. </b>
21 Woe unto thee, Chorazin! woe unto thee, Bethsaida! for if the mighty works, which were done in you, had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes.
22 But I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the day of judgment, than for you.
<b>Just as faith bring the fruit of the spirit (Mark 4:20) sowing fear brings judgment, satan has already been judged (John 16:11, walking outside of the word of God causes us to walk in fear and bring us into the judgment that satan has already received.</b>
23 And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted unto heaven, shalt be brought down to hell: for if the mighty works, which have been done in thee, had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day.
24 But I say unto you, That it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for thee.
25 At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes.
<b> Just as receiving and walking in the word of God brings fruit of the Holy Spirit 100 fold (Mark 4:20, Gal 5:22). Receiving and walking in the word of fear the fruit of the enemy, satan brings the opposite, condemnation, sin consciousness, guilt, weakness, defeat, unworthiness, disease, sickness, rebellion, and powerlessness. (Rom 6:23) </b>
26 Even so, Father: for so it seemed good in thy sight.
27 All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him.
<b>Jesus affirming that He is walking in the authority of God which empowers Him to fulfill his commission to destroy the devil's work (1 John 3:8) </b>
28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
<b>How Jesus will destroy the devil's work by his branches, they that are walking in Him entering the rest. of God (Heb 3:15.) Hear the voice of God, prepared before the foundation, by which we enter His rest. Ceasing from human works, in confidence, holding onto the beginning, partaking of the Anointed One and his Anointing. Then in his rest steadfast to the end, come boldly to the throne, to receive God’s grace, his Anointing, sufficient for every need. Each new TODAY God gives us opportunity to enter his rest, if we will hear his voice. In his rest is found everything we need, already prepared, in his rest is where Jesus is – it is finished. The rest is the prepared place for us, the secret place (Ps 91:1), the abiding place (John 15:5). The place where miracles have already been prepared (Ps 91:15.) We get the beginning (Prov 4:5), his voice (Ps 91:15), The Holy Spirit and his Word and he gives us the rest. The rest is the cross and Christ's resurrection, dead to sin, but alive to God in Him Christ. Christ is the source, the cross is the means whereby the Holy Spirit reveals Christ in our lives, cease from dead works and enter his rest.</b>
29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
<b>The yoke had been placed on all mankind (Is 10:27.) A yoke is a bridle made of wood that rests on the necks of oxen that were used to plow or to draw a cart, It symbolizes a heavy burden and bondage to the enemy satan. The anointing of God (the holy Spirit) will remove all burdens and destroy all yokes.</b>
30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
<b>The yoke of God is pure light (John 1:5) Entering the rest of God, is to enter into and walk in his light (Ps 56:13). If we say we walk in Christ while we walk outside of Him who is the word and the light, we lie and do not live according to the truth. But if we walk in Him, by abiding in His light, walking in the word of God by the Holy Spirit (Rom 8:13 amp) together we are in Him and all others who are in the light, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin we walk in the overcoming life (John 16:33). If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us (We are unable to walk in the overcoming life and the life of fear overtakes us). If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just, and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us (1 John 1:5-10)</b>