Sunday, June 24, 2018

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Luke 10:1-11

"Go I am sending you out like lambs among wolves" ( Luke 10:3)
In Luke chapter 9 we read about Jesus sending out his 12 apostles. In this chapter we read about sending another 72 apostles (70 in some manuscripts). Some theologians suggest that 70 represent the number of nations known at that time signifying Jesus' ministry to the whole world. They are appointed to go ahead of him in teams of two. We know that Jesus had many followers who were not with him all the time but tried to follow His teachings. Chapter 9 ends with the warning that Jesus demands wholehearted devotion.
Discipleship - A Team Work: Christianity is not a one-man ministry. When we work as a team the members must be ready to adjust and accommodate. Openness and transparency are needed for effective teamwork. There is no question of 'who will be the greatest?'(9:46) Jesus gives them clear instructions regarding their response when they meet people. They have to travel light. No purse, no bags, no sandals. They are not to take anything that could hold them back. He is specific about where they should go. There is no vagueness or uncertainty. He does not give them options. They are to concentrate their work centered on families. Spend more time with one family conveying the message of peace. They are not allowed to seek for greener pastures. Gospel can take root and grow only if there is peace of mind. In our society we have everything in our houses. But more and more families are becoming battlegrounds and hells. In our busy schedule we often neglect the families. So Jesus asks them to start with one family at a time. Give them fellowship, strengthen them spiritually create an atmosphere of peace and then move to the next. Thereby they can change the entire community and the society and the nation. They have to be consistent in their approach.
Be Prepared For The Worst; They are sent as lambs among the wolves. They have to become courageous depending on God's grace. Sir Winston Churchill demanded, "Sweat, Blood and Tears" Gospel is not a sugarcoated message. There is no easy way for Christianity. It is the Way of the Cross. There are challenges and problems ahead. Jesus wanted His disciples to know what they are getting into. History throws light to the fact that most of the Apostles had to become martyrs for their faith. Today even in this country, which is supposed to be founded on Christian faith there are many challenges to our faith from other religions, the forces of government, media, atheism, etc. In any case, our task is to prepare the way for the second coming of Jesus. We have to do the work God has entrusted to us and leave the rest to the Holy Spirit. It is the Spirit who gives the result.

"Dear Lord! Help us to realize the meaning and purpose of our calling and stay focused on the Way leaving the rest to You. Amen.
A Journey with Jesus is Journey to the Cross.
Christian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church