The beginning of any large project is very exciting. But it can also be very intimidating when you realize all the work that needs to be done, the details that need to be worked out, and the time required to accomplish the goal. These realizations can lead to a paralysis so severe that the work never gets done. In the passage below, Jesus challenges the disciples and calls them to an overwhelming task, one where there is much to do with few apparent resources.
- Are there areas in your life where you are being challenged to act or go in obedience to Christ?
READ THE WORD: LUKE 10:1-16 (ESV)
10:1After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them on ahead of him, two by two, into every town and place where he himself was about to go. 2 And he said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest. 3 Go your way; behold, I am sending you out as lambs in the midst of wolves. 4 Carry no moneybag, no knapsack, no sandals, and greet no one on the road.5 Whatever house you enter, first say, ‘Peace be to this house!’ 6 And if a son of peace is there, your peace will rest upon him. But if not, it will return to you. 7 And remain in the same house, eating and drinking what they provide, for the laborer deserves his wages. Do not go from house to house. 8 Whenever you enter a town and they receive you, eat what is set before you. 9 Heal the sick in it and say to them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’ 10 But whenever you enter a town and they do not receive you, go into its streets and say, 11 ‘Even the dust of your town that clings to our feet we wipe off against you. Nevertheless know this, that the kingdom of God has come near.’ 12 I tell you, it will be more bearable on that day for Sodom than for that town.
13 “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago, sitting in sackcloth and ashes. 14 But it will be more bearable in the judgment for Tyre and Sidon than for you. 15 And you, Capernaum, will you be exalted to heaven? You shall be brought down to Hades.
16 “The one who hears you hears me, and the one who rejects you rejects me, and the one who rejects me rejects him who sent me.”
English Standard Version, copyright 2001 by Crossway Bibles. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
- What is the first command that Jesus gave the disciples (vs. 2)? What is its significance?
- Christ’s instructions to the disciples in how they were to go are unique. What can we learn from the specific directions he gave them in verses 4-11? On what do we depend?
- Chorazin and Bethsaida were towns near Capernaum where Jesus concentrated his ministry. What relevance does this bring to Jesus’ “woe” in verses 13-14?
- Do you live your life as if you are sent by God to bring the kingdom of God? Why or why not?
- How can Jesus’ statement in verse 16 give us courage as we are sent out daily?
RESPOND TO GOD
Jesus has called us into the incredible adventure of representing him to the world. In this passage, Jesus presented a huge need to his disciples and then called them to act. Then, Jesus did what any wise mentor knows to do at the beginning of a great task: he charged them to begin! Take a step. Do something. Don’t be overwhelmed by the enormity of the task! It has been said, “Don’t let the fact that you can’t do everything keep you from doing something.” What is the “something” Jesus wants you to do?
- Pray about what keeps you from engaging in the work Christ has for you. Ask God to show you clearly what that is.
- Ask the Lord to give you a compassionate heart for those who have not heard about Christ.