During Lent, we are using short videos to share a daily idea (linked to the gospel of Luke) on how to grow spiritually. Watch today’s video. Click here or on the image below:
Note: We are reading the entire gospel of Luke in the GPS. Some day’s readings are longer than usual. We hope you’ll have an extra cup of coffee, or use your lunch break, and read Luke’s entire story of Jesus.
1 After these things, the Lord commissioned seventy-two others and sent them on ahead in pairs to every city and place he was about to go. 2 He said to them, “The harvest is bigger than you can imagine, but there are few workers. Therefore, plead with the Lord of the harvest to send out workers for his harvest. 3 Go! Be warned, though, that I’m sending you out as lambs among wolves. 4 Carry no wallet, no bag, and no sandals. Don’t even greet anyone along the way. 5 Whenever you enter a house, first say, ‘May peace be on this house.’ 6 If anyone there shares God’s peace, then your peace will rest on that person. If not, your blessing will return to you. 7 Remain in this house, eating and drinking whatever they set before you, for workers deserve their pay. Don’t move from house to house. 8 Whenever you enter a city and its people welcome you, eat what they set before you. 9 Heal the sick who are there, and say to them, ‘God’s kingdom has come upon you.’ 10 Whenever you enter a city and the people don’t welcome you, go out into the streets and say, 11 ‘As a complaint against you, we brush off the dust of your city that has collected on our feet. But know this: God’s kingdom has come to you.’ 12 I assure you that Sodom will be better off on Judgment Day than that city.
13 “How terrible it will be for you, Chorazin. How terrible it will be for you, Bethsaida. If the miracles done among you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have changed their hearts and lives long ago. They would have sat around in funeral clothes and ashes. 14 But Tyre and Sidon will be better off at the judgment than you. 15 And you, Capernaum, will you be honored by being raised up to heaven? No, you will be cast down to the place of the dead. 16 Whoever listens to you listens to me. Whoever rejects you rejects me. Whoever rejects me rejects the one who sent me.”
17 The seventy-two returned joyously, saying, “Lord, even the demons submit themselves to us in your name.”
18 Jesus replied, “I saw Satan fall from heaven like lightning. 19 Look, I have given you authority to crush snakes and scorpions underfoot. I have given you authority over all the power of the enemy. Nothing will harm you. 20 Nevertheless, don’t rejoice because the spirits submit to you. Rejoice instead that your names are written in heaven.”
21 At that very moment, Jesus overflowed with joy from the Holy Spirit and said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you’ve hidden these things from the wise and intelligent and shown them to babies. Indeed, Father, this brings you happiness. 22 My Father has handed all things over to me. No one knows who the Son is except the Father, or who the Father is except the Son and anyone to whom the Son wants to reveal him.” 23 Turning to the disciples, he said privately, “Happy are the eyes that see what you see. 24 I assure you that many prophets and kings wanted to see what you see and hear what you hear, but they didn’t.
Yesterday we read that Luke said Jesus “determined to go to Jerusalem” (Luke 9:51). He told his disciples he was “about to be delivered into human hands” (Luke 9:44). But he made this choice, not in defeat, but as a victorious march into his enemies’ stronghold. On his way to Jerusalem and the cross, Jesus said, “I saw Satan fall from heaven like lightning,” and “overflowed with joy.”
Lord Jesus, you didn’t try to avoid pain and evil, but robbed it of power by absorbing the worst of it and coming out victorious. Teach me the difficult wisdom of your path to victory. Amen.
* Wright, N.T., Luke for Everyone (New Testament for Everyone) (pp. 123-125). SPCK. Kindle Edition.
Click here to incorporate music and worship from the COR Worship Collective into your daily practice and devotion.
I love sharing. Well, let me clarify…I love sharing things I love. When I find something I enjoy I can’t help but tell others about it. This could be a great book, new shampoo, something yummy to eat…anything! And when I share, I like to have lots of facts and figures to back up my claim of how great it is.
In our passage today we see the disciples reconnecting with Jesus after they have been sent out to share something they love…Jesus. They tell Jesus how they had the same power over spirits as he does and did some amazing things in his name. And yet Jesus says to them, “Nevertheless, don’t rejoice because the spirits submit to you. Rejoice instead that your names are written in heaven.” Jesus points them toward the fact that rejoicing doesn’t come through the powerful things they do, but through the fact that they are known by God, that their “names are written in heaven.”
Jesus then goes on to give praise to God, “because you’ve hidden these things from the wise and intelligent and shown them to babies.” And this is where I realize that all my facts and figures and convincing others to love what I love…it just falls short. God doesn’t care about the information we know or the eloquent way we talk. God looks to the heart of us and sees us as children who are simply sharing something we love.
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