Summary: Here are six qualities of those who are willing to embrace the mission of Christ to bring the gospel to the world!
Embrace the Mission Luke 10:1-11, 16-20
The spread of the Gospel Message in the first century is amazing. From 12 apostles to limited commission … to the day of Pentecost… The Kingdom is a grass-roots effort. Even today with all of our mass-media abilities, person-to-person encouragement and teaching is still the most powerful way to spread the gospel.
Acts 1:8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
In last week’s text there were three ‘would be’ disciples that as far as we know did not follow Jesus. In today’s text we learn why Jesus held his disciples to such high standards … the journey is tough. Jesus’ vision of his disciples is that they would be going out to others … reflected in this account of the sending out of the seventy (or seventy two). Jesus is still sending us out …. daily into the marketplace. The mission of Jesus is one of partnership (vs 1). Today I encourage you to embrace the mission to bring the Kingdom of God to the world around you.The instructions of Jesus give us some great insight into the mission of disciples in our world. What are some qualities of disciples who embrace the mission of Jesus?
1. Pray: Pray together as they engage in spiritual work (2)
Are we praying for God to raise up more harvesters? Globally …. Nationally … Locally.
Are we praying for the harvesters in the field?
Are we praying for God to send US into His field?
E. M. Bounds: [The prayer closet] is the battlefield of the Church; its citadel; the scene of heroic and unearthly conflicts. The closet is the base of supplies for the Christian and the Church. Cut off from it there is nothing left but retreat and disaster. The energy for work, the mastery over self, the deliverance from fear, all spiritual results and graces, are much advanced by prayer.
2. Watch: Keep each other safe in dangerous situations (3)
We need to be cautious about situations that can destroy our faith.
1 Peter 5:8 Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
Anytime we think that we are above falling into a sin, we are lying to ourselves!
We need to be willing to speak when we see someone walking on dangerous ground.
We need to hear when God sends a messenger our way.
Proverbs 27:17 As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.
3. Focus: Stay focused on the important things (vs 4)
What distracts us from our mission? Events of life can distract us for periods of time. Our own faults or failures can turn our eyes from the mission. Fear of rejection or what others may think.
“It's incredibly easy to get caught up in the thick of thin things.” - Stephen R. Covey
It is easy to be distracted when we are facing something that is difficult or hard.
The ‘would be’ disciples we read about last week were so bonded to their earthly ideals that they couldn’t focus on the mission before them.
4. Seek Peace: Pronounce Peace whenever and wherever you can! (5-7)
We should always seek peace and to help people have peace with God.
Two verses about peace:
Matthew 5:9 Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
James 3:18 Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness.
Blessed are the peacemakers. We have to have peace with God in order to share it with others. Is anything keeping you from having peace with God? Is it worth it?
5. Persistent: Be Persistent when encountering resistance (8-12).
We face some resistance in our own hearts. Honestly - have we said some things today already that you are rejecting? When you are an agent of the cross you will encounter a great deal of resistance. Do not be surprised! The world hated Him! The world thinks what you believe is foolishness!
Even so, never give up the mission of sharing the Kingdom of God with the world.
6. Joyful (17-20)
Yes, there are struggles but reason to rejoice as well. We rejoice that Satan is Defeated! We rejoice that Our names are written in Heaven! We rejoice not in what we do, but in what God does through us.
It might well be claimed that the discovery of the use of chloroform saved the world more pain than any other single medical discovery. Once someone asked Sir James Simpson, its discoverer, “What do you regard as your greatest discovery?” The questioner naturally expected the answer, “The discovery of chloroform.” But Simpson answered, “My greatest discovery was when I discovered that Jesus Christ is my Saviour.” (via Wm. Barclay)
When we are on mission for Christ we are expecting great joy!