Summary: The second part of Are You Authorized studying those who are authorized to do the work of God.
Last week we talk about being authorized to do the things of God. We looked at how ministries, ministers and churches can do what seems to be Godly things but they were not authorized by God and therefore unlawful and not of God. We also discussed the punishment for such actions. Tonight we are going to look at the works of those who were authorized and the difference it makes.
1 NOW AFTER this the Lord chose and appointed seventy others and sent them out ahead of Him, two by two, into every town and place where He Himself was about to come (visit). 2 And He said to them, The harvest indeed is abundant [ there is much ripe grain], but the farmhands are few. Pray therefore the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.
The first thing to note is that the Lord chose. Scripture records that on more than one occasion “God Chose”. When we allow God to Choose or make the decision it works out for the best. After he chose he appointed. This is the same process that we see also in Acts when they are choosing Stephen to take Judas’s place. When God appointed them he sent them. God never calls us to sit on a pew and occupy till he returns.
9 And heal the sick in it and say to them, The kingdom of God has come close to you.
Jesus gave two instructions: Heal the sick and tell them the kingdom of God had come to them. Nothing more nothing less. This was their authorization. This was their ministry. He didn’t call them to build a church, he called them to do what he authorized them to do.
17 The seventy returned with joy, saying, Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your name!
Now we need to understand that in the healing process that sometimes means, as in this case, that one must be prepared to cast out demons. Many of the infirmities in the bible were demonic. So, there were times as seen by this scripture that in order to heal they had been authorized to cast out demons in Jesus name.
18 And He said to them, I saw Satan falling like a lightning [flash] from heaven
Jesus make a statement here: I saw satan falling like a lightning flash from heaven. Some scholars believe this refers to the time that satan was cast out of heaven at the time of the rebellion. Others feel that Jesus was referring to the time of ministry this group had just completed. I tend to think that Jesus was telling them he was there when satan rebelled and he saw him cast out…but that he saw the same symbolic action when the 70 went forth in power and authority.
19 Behold! I have given you authority and power to trample upon serpents and scorpions, and [physical and mental strength and ability] over all the power that the enemy [possesses]; and nothing shall in any way harm you.
Jesus again makes a statement to remind them. I have given you authority and power. To do what. Serpents and scorpions are demonic beings. Jesus states that those he authorizes have authority and power of all the power that the enemy possesses..and nothing shall harm you in any way.
20 Nevertheless, do not rejoice at this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are enrolled in heaven.(3).
Then Jesus give a word of caution: Do not rejoice in the fact that the spirits are subject to you. Rejoice that your names are enrolled, or written down, in the lambs book of life. It is fair more important to be saved than it is to have the power over demons.