Wednesday 03 June 2020

Bible Book:

Then Jesus called the twelve together and gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases. (v. 1)

Luke 9:1-6 Wednesday 3 June 2020

Psalm: Psalm 33


This passage in Luke’s Gospel portrays Jesus sending out his twelve disciples in mission. Prior to this passage, Jesus has demonstrated his power over nature (8:22-25), demons (8:26-39), illness (8:43-48), and even death (8:49-56). Now in this text, Jesus commissions and empowers the twelve to heal and to teach as they travel to the nearby villages (vs. 1 – 2). As the disciples proclaim the kingdom of God so they demonstrate its power through healings and exorcisms. Word and deed are connected in the way of the kingdom.

Jesus also instructs his disciples to avoid taking provisions for the journey. As a sign of their radical trust in God and the urgency of their mission, they are not to take a staff, nor a bag, nor bread, nor even an extra tunic!

Their dependence on God is also expressed through their reliance on hospitality. Where they receive a welcome in a village they visit, they are to stay and share the good news of the kingdom (verse 3). Where they are rejected, they are to leave, shaking the dust off their feet as a witness against those who oppose the gospel (verses 4-5). And so, Luke tells us, the disciples go, and the power of Jesus works through them (verse 6).

Within Luke’s Gospel, this story shows how Jesus’ disciples took his mission around the region in obedience to him. At this stage, their manner of mission followed the model of their master, and Jesus later sends out seventy-two others with a similar charge and a similar mandate (Luke 10:1-17). Later in Luke’s Gospel, Jesus tells his disciples that they’ll come a time when they should take provisions for the journey, including taking a purse and a bag (22:35-38). Different contexts require different models of mission, but what’s consistent is the call to proclaim the kingdom in obedience to Jesus. 


To Ponder:

  • In what ways does your understanding of mission embrace 'word' as well as 'deed'?
  • What kinds of mission are you or your church community involved in today?
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