In truth, God will accomplish His ends regardless of whether or not we choose to follow Him. This is why Jesus didn’t say, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for they will help God succeed.” Instead, He promised us a kingdom inheritance. By virtue of our surrender to the Son and His purposes we have entered into a new citizenship. Our reward is a front row seat where we see His glory revealed.
Zealous passion for kingdom work and a growing understanding of God’s will define our existence. It is amazing, and sometimes downright shocking to follow Jesus’ first disciples as this persona emerged. When James and John started out, they were ambitious men who saw Jesus as their ticket to political influence. Why else would they have allowed their mother to solicit the right and left positions at Jesus’ future throne? (Matthew 20:21) In time, however, they would discover what it meant to be kingdom servants. James would soon die for his faith and John would face persecution and exile. John gives us an additional point of observation through his writings, where we see him transformed from the one who wanted to call down fire upon the Samaritans to an ambassador of love.
The same can be said for almost all of the disciples, notably Peter and the Apostle Paul who was “abnormally born” (1 Corinthians 15:8). It is easy to see why Judas, the exception to the case, failed to develop. He never grasped the right passion or pursued understanding, but continued in his fallen human state, reaping what he sowed.
“Poor in spirit”, therefore, is really a choice. It represents the thing or the one to whom we have sworn our allegiance. When we offer our lives to Satan he beats us down and robs us of our worth. Then we are poor in every way. But when we surrender to Jesus, He lifts us up and empowers us for ministry. We reign with Him in His kingdom and find ourselves riding on the crest of eternal conquest. Such is the life of those who are willing to filter out the old self repeatedly and receive their inheritance with thanksgiving.