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PASTORS' DAILY DEVOTIONAL
Sep
27

Sent OUT!

Jon Burgess

Scripture

1The Lord now chose seventy-two10:1Some manuscripts readseventy;also in 10:17.other disciples and sent them ahead in pairs to all the towns and places he planned to visit.2These were his instructions to them...Luke 10:1-2

Observation

Let's just be honest. This is the worst motivational speech ever! Jesus is sending out his 72 disciples to change the world. They are full of fire and fervor and then Jesus slaps them upside the head with the sobering reality of what being "sent out" actually means:

OUT-manned-The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.(Luke 10:2) You will need to be in prayer constantly because the need will always outweigh the manpower needed.

OUT-gunned-Now go, and remember that I am sending you out as lambs among wolves. (Luke 10:3) You can imagine the look on the disciple's faces going from delight to downcast in two point five seconds. They've just been told they will never have enough help and they will be surrounded by those who want to kill and persecute them. Not only is this not a walk in the park, it's a march straight into the gates of hell. The enemy has held these souls as his own and won't give them up without a fight. Then that comparison had to take the wind out their sails too. Can't we be wolves fighting wolves? At least that's a fair fight. But, what chance does a lamb have against a wolf? Exactly! This was never going to be a fair fight and the enemy would never see what the Lamb of God slain for the sins of the world had in mind.

OUT-of time-Don’t take any money with you, nor a traveler’s bag, nor an extra pair of sandals. And don’t stop to greet anyone on the road. (Luke 10:3)Wait! What? They won't have enough help. They will be surrounded by those whowant to hurt them. Now they can't even bring supplies from home or stop to ask others for help along the way? Why? Time was of the essence. There was no time to go back home and pack their belongings or get into conversations with friends or family along the way. There was an urgency in the Savior's voice. See Luke 9:57-62 for Jesus' response to His would-be disciples who had a few things to do before following Him. It's now or never when you are sent out by the Savior.

OUT-cast- 10But if a town refuses to welcome you, go out into its streets and say, 11‘We wipe even the dust of your town from our feet to show that we have abandoned you to your fate. And know this—the Kingdom of God is near!’(Luke 10:10-11) They weren't going to be winning any popularity contests. Most would ignore them, many would reject them, a few would shelter them, but all would be forced to choose. That's why Jesus was sending His disciples ahead of him. Just as John The Baptist prepared the way for His arrival His disciples were called to prepare the hearts of men to choose Him. To reject His disciples was to reject Jesus. Thus, being cast out from towns such asKorazin and Bethsaida was part of being sent out by Jesus.

Application

I know this sounds strange, but these instructions from Jesus to His "sent out" ones doesn't flatline my faith, it gets me fired up! When the chips are down, the odds are stacked against us, the enemy is already gloating at our defeat I can't wait to charge in with my Savior! You see this is what happened. These 72 didn't go whimpering back to their homes. Jesus gave it to them straight and they marched straight into the fray. When you are following someone who was sent out to die for you then you are ready to be sent out to die for Him! Here's what it may have felt like on that glorious day:

* Lord of the Rings: Return of the King- As Aragorn, the rightful King of Gondor, rides back from the Black Gate, he delivers this impassioned speech to his brothers-in-arms:

"Sons of Gondor, of Rohan. My brothers. I see in your eyes the same fear that would take the heart of me! A day may come, when the courage of men fails, when we forsake our friends and break all bonds of Fellowship, but it is not this day! An hour of wolves and shattered shields when the age of men comes crashing down! But it is not this day! This day we fight! By all that you hold dear on this good earth, I bid you, stand, men of the West!"

* Braveheart-Delivered by the legendary Scottish rebel, William Wallace, played by Mel Gibson, this battle speech beckons the Scottish countrymen to lay down their lives as the cost of freedom from English tyranny:

WALLACE

I AM William Wallace. And I see a whole army of my countrymen here in defiance of tyranny. You have come to fight as free men, and free men you are. What would you do without freedom? Will you fight?

VETERAN SOLDIER

Fight? Against that? No, we will run; and we will live.

WALLACE

Aye, fight and you may die. Run and you’ll live — at least a while. And dying in your beds many years from now, would you be willing to trade all the days from this day to that for one chance, just one chance to come back here and tell our enemies that they may take our lives, but they’ll never take our freedom!!!

* Gandhi- This is a different type of battle for independence; not of combat, but of passive resistance. This is much closer to what Jesus is asking His "sent-out" ones to do.

We must defy the British… Not with violence that will inflame their will, but with a firmness that will open their eyes... When I despair, I remember that the way of truth and love has always won. There may be tyrants and murderers, and for a time, they can seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall. Think of it: always.

Prayer

It's when the disciples return from their first mission that they realize what we all need to know. To be sent out by Jesus is to be sent out with Jesus and to be with Jesus is to have everything we need for victory:

17When the seventy-two disciples returned, they joyfully reported to him, “Lord, even the demons obey us when we use your name!”18“Yes,”he told them,“I saw Satan fall from heaven like lightning! 19Look, I have given you authority over all the power of the enemy, and you can walk among snakes and scorpions and crush them. Nothing will injure you. 20But don’t rejoice because evil spirits obey you; rejoice because your names are registered in heaven.” (Luke 10:17-20)
Thank YouFather for sending Your Son Jesus. Thank You Jesus for giving Your life for me. Thank You Jesus for sending me out with the authority of Your Name and The Power of The Holy Spirit!

Devotions for September 27

Haggai 1,2
Psalms 129
Luke 10

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