Luke 7:18-23: ‘Are you the One?’
Doubt, it will be our portion as long as we are alive. On account of the fallen nature that still remains within us we are professional doubters who default to doubt at the best and worst of times. We doubt because of satan, we doubt because of sin, we doubt because of ignorance, we doubt because we don’t like the truth, we doubt when we are in pain as a knee jerk reaction against God. The strongest and the weakest Christians have struggled with doubt. Elijah doubted God after the victory over the prophets of Baal; David doubted God fleeing from Saul to the Philistines; Abraham doubted God’s protection and so lied about Sarah being his wife; Adam and Eve doubted God’s goodness in the commands He gave, and on and on we could go. Saints in both the OT and the NT have had wobblies in their faith. John the Baptist was no exception to the rule. John is in prison and has heard the reports about Christ. But he is not sure, he thought he was but not anymore, this section explores John’s doubt as he sends some of his disciples to enquire whether Jesus is the long expected Saviour promised in the OT.
This section comes to us in a chapter that has been looking at who Jesus is through the eyes of the believing Centurion; as the Lord of life who raised the widow’s son, and 7:16 shows the Jews drawing some conclusions about who Jesus is that are off the mark. This section will help us see how Jesus sees Himself, how John sees Jesus, how Jesus sees John and how we are to view John, Jesus and ourselves. This is a section where a lot of things get clarified. Jesus gets asked the question, ‘Are you the One?’ This section answers that question and more.
As we go through Luke 7:18-23 we will be looking at it under two headings: we want to explore John’s doubts and Jesus’ response.