This sermon was based on Luke 9:62-10:20.
62Jesus said to him, “No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.”
Grace to you and peace.
Jesus Sends Out the Seventy-Two
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. 2And 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. 3Go your way; behold, I am sending you out as lambs in the midst of wolves. 4Carry no moneybag, no knapsack, no sandals, and greet no one on the road. 5Whatever house you enter, first say, ‘Peace be to this house!’ 6And if a son of peace is there, your peace will rest upon him. But if not, it will return to you. 7And remain in the same house, eating and drinking what they provide, for the laborer deserves his wages. Do not go from house to house. 8Whenever you enter a town and they receive you, eat what is set before you. 9Heal the sick in it and say to them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’ 10But 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.’ 12I tell you, it will be more bearable on that day for Sodom than for that town.
Woe to Unrepentant Cities
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. 14But it will be more bearable in the judgment for Tyre and Sidon than for you. 15And 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.”
The Return of the Seventy-Two
17The seventy-two returned with joy, saying, “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in your name!” 18And he said to them, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. 19Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you. 20Nevertheless, do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”
Step Out in Faith
- This unnamed group of 72 demonstrate that the faith to follow Jesus is open to all of us. It isn’t an elite group. This is a great example for ALL of us, as many of us will remain (LARGELY) unnamed.
- Like these 72… Jesus sends us. In the great commission everyone gets to go. The 72 haven’t gone to bible school. They have only spent a few months (max. a couple of years) with Jesus. They aren’t exactly over-qualified.
- Their faith takes them to places Jesus hasn’t been before. There are people in your life, and mine and we are the gospel to these people. Many haven’t had a heritage of knowing about Jesus. We are going ahead, we are living it out, showing them, preparing the way.
- Their faith in following Jesus means they are not distracted. They travel light and don’t take much with them. There seems to be an expectation, that as they go in faith, God will provide for them.
- You’ll remember Jesus has said when you plough the field, you have to look forward because sometimes there is disappointment. Sometimes things don’t go the way we want them to. If we keep looking back, and wishing it hadn’t gone that way we aren’t going to grow in the way God is calling us to.
- Some people will receive you, others won’t. You may think that if Jesus says “to go” and you go, that if Jesus has given you a “set of instructions” and you follow them then of course it is going to work… all of the time! Jesus wants us to know that it is difficult and that it doesn’t always go as we want it to go.
- It is important that when things don’t work out, that we don’t let failure stick to us.
When you make the first attempt to tell a friend about Jesus
When you offer to pray with someone
When you attempt to reach out and be kind to the person in your office who is just annoying, or hard to get along with
And it doesn’t go as you wanted it to then brush it off like the dust. Don’t let failure stick!
Be Full of Joy
- They returned with JOY. They are pumped. They are over flowing with excitement about the experiences. They are rejoicing. All 72 of them.
- Despite being lambs in the midst of wolves, even though they faced set-backs and failures, although some towns and villages rejected the message. They have immense joy at serving alongside each other, for God, and seeing stuff happen! They had joy in the part that they have played in furthering the kingdom.
- These 72 return with joy because they have been part of what Jesus was doing. Church should be full of joy as we Have A Go at what Jesus wants us to do, it shouldn’t feel ‘intense’ , or pressured, or forced, it should be Joyful … because Joy is a fruit of the spirit.
- In Having A Go, because Jesus is working something greater, there is a whole world that we don’t see, … that we can impact. In those moments, when we Have A Go…. We work with Jesus and defeat the enemy!