A Perspective That Changes Lives
When considering David Kinnaman’s observations from his book, Unchristian, that over 85% of teens and young adults in the US feel Christians are antihomosexual, judgemental, hypocritical. This is alarming and sobering. In studying thousands of sixteen to twenty-nine year olds impressions, David observed that it is clear that Christians are primarily perceived for what they stand against and have become famous for what we oppose, rather than what we are for. So what are Christians for? In Luke 10, Jesus sends out 72 men to go ahead of Him to every town He will visit. Within His instructions a perspective is reveal that could radically change the perceptions of unbelievers if Christians entered into the realities of the truth of Jesus’ directives.
Jesus is declaring to His followers that there is going to be a harvest! This harvest is so great that they will need others to partner with them to gather it in! Therefore Jesus wants them to pray for others to join them in the task. Jesus’ followers have an optimistic view of the future success in ministry. The promise of success in ministry is so great that they are encouraged to pray to others to help them in the harvest.
Jesus is sending His followers to do His kingdom business! It is a dangerous job. He is asking them to limit their resources so they will trust in Him and in time trust those He is sending them to minister to. He doesn’t want them to get distracted on the way. The followers of Jesus have a sense of purpose, being commissioned to go ahead of Him. The task that lies before them is not safe. It is dangerous. They are depending on Jesus to provide for their needs. As they travel to their destination they are to be single-minded and not get side tracked by distractions.
Jesus tells them to speak peace to those they meet within their village. They are bringing blessing and peace to men and women they encounter.
Once they have found a man of peace, Jesus directs them to remain with him and associate with him. They are to steadfastly remain in relationship with their man of peace and not move from relationship to relationship in the village.
Jesus commands them to pray for the sick, ministering to the felt needs of their man of peace and his household. They have a confidence that the Father will hear their prayers and heal the sick.
Jesus exhorts them to tell their man of peace and his household that the Kingdom of God is near. They have a confidence in sharing truths about the reality of the Kingdom of God!
If they are rejected, Jesus tells them to shake the dust off your feet! They are not deterred by the criticism and rejection of others. They shake it off and are confident that regardless of the opinions of their critics the Kingdom of God is a reality.
If we follow Jesus’ directives in Luke 10 and enter into the perspectives that are implied, we would have an optimism about the reality of the kingdom of God and the harvest to come. We will not judge people, but bless them, speaking peace to them. When we find a man of peace, we will not just look for their conversion, but we will associate with him and his household and remain in relationship with them. We will devote ourselves to pray for their felt needs, believing that the Father will intervene in their lives. As we continue to love and minister to them, we will confidently share the truths of the gospel with them. Even if they were to reject us, we are not defeated but shake their criticism off and remember the kingdom is near. Jesus is building His church! There is a harvest! We are commissioned as ambassadors of King Jesus! He is sending us to pray for His intervention into the lives of those He died for and to tell them about His Kingdom! We are not those who oppose, but those who are sent by Jesus and live for His kingdom! (back to 'Weekly Blog' page)