Summary: Empower your Church to use the Authority that Jesus delegated to Christians. (Identity, Faith, Keys, Hinderances, Great Commission).
The Believer’s Authority
Grant van Boeschoten
February 17, 2008
1. Jesus Sends out the 70
When Jesus walked the earth he was followed around by many people. Some people stayed around just because it was exciting. Where you found Jesus you found miracles, and many people liked to get the goose bumps as the supernatural took place.
But there was also a group of people who traveled with Jesus who were his close followers. They listened to the teaching, they became good friends with Jesus and at a certain point in his ministry, Jesus sent them out to do the work of God.
This is how it is in the Church by the way. There are many people who like to hear about and watch the supernatural take place; Get goose bumps as they here the stories of God’s greatness. The hair on the back of the neck stands up as you watch people get healed.
But there is another group of people who aren’t just in Church for the experience. They are here to listen to the teaching and they are putting these things into practice in their life so that they can be used to do the work of God.
During the days of the Bible and even now, we call this group of people disciples: people who listen and adhere to the teaching and then transmit it to others.
In Luke 9 Jesus sends out his 12 closest disciples, they were later referred to as Apostles because they became leaders of the Church. But the work of God is not just for Church leaders, it is for everyone who wants to be a disciple of Jesus. And so in Luke 10, Jesus chooses 72 more disciples to go out and do the work of God.
Luke 10:1-12, 16-20 (NLT)
Jesus Sends Out His Disciples
10 The Lord now chose seventy-two other disciples and sent them ahead in pairs to all the towns and places he planned to visit. 2 These were his instructions to them: “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. 3 Now go, and remember that I am sending you out as lambs among wolves. 4 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.
5 “Whenever you enter someone’s home, first say, ‘May God’s peace be on this house.’ 6 If those who live there are peaceful, the blessing will stand; if they are not, the blessing will return to you. 7 Don’t move around from home to home. Stay in one place, eating and drinking what they provide. Don’t hesitate to accept hospitality, because those who work deserve their pay.
8 “If you enter a town and it welcomes you, eat whatever is set before you. 9 Heal the sick, and tell them, ‘The Kingdom of God is near you now.’ 10 But 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!’ 12 I assure you, even wicked Sodom will be better off than such a town on judgment day.
16 Then he said to the disciples, “Anyone who accepts your message is also accepting me. And anyone who rejects you is rejecting me. And anyone who rejects me is rejecting God, who sent me.”
17 When 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! 19 Look, 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. 20 But don’t rejoice because evil spirits obey you; rejoice because your names are registered in heaven.”
When these disciples returned, they were amazed that they could even speak with authority to demons. They had the power to heal, to bless and to curse. What gave them this authority? They were just normal people like you and me. How were they able to go out and get such great results? Let’s explore this a little bit more and see if we can’t find some application for our own lives as well. Maybe God has got some truth to plant in our hearts today.
The Disciples that Jesus sent returned with this statement, “Lord, even the demons obey us when we use your name!” There was recognition that none of this happens without identification with Jesus.