In these days he went out to the mountain to pray, and all night he continued in prayer to God. And when day came, he called his disciples and chose from them twelve, whom he named apostles… Luke 6:12-13
Back in chapter 6 we noted that this change in title from “disciples” to “apostles” signified not just status but mission: these are the first twelve who would be sent out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal. Before doing so, Luke tells us that Jesus …gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases… but again, Luke doesn’t tell us what he means by this. Put yourself in that space, with those apostles, hearing that the same power they had seen at work in Jesus would now flow through them.
This conferring of authority is significant background for the rest of the chapter. When the crowds are hungry, the disciples want Jesus to send them away. When confronting with a demon-possessed boy, they are unable to drive the demon out, a result, according to Jesus, of their faithlessness. Later, they bicker over which of them is the greatest, and even try to stop one who is not of the twelve from casting out demons in Jesus’ name.
In chapter 10 the commission is expanded to include seventy-two others who are sent ahead of Him, two-by-two, into every town and place where He himself was about to go… and they returned, marveling to Jesus (and perhaps to the twelve) that “even the demons are subject to us in your name!"
Through Jesus’ response: “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven…” Luke again highlights the power of God in Jesus’ eyes, hands, and words. Luke recounts – almost as though it happened yesterday – how Jesus rejoiced in the Holy Spirit that the Father has “…hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to little children, that no one knows who the Son is except the Father, or who the Father is except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal Him.”
Keep this context in mind for the encounter immediately after it. Putting Jesus to the test, a lawyer asks, “What shall I do to inherit eternal life?” Jesus responds with a simple story, one that a child could understand, about a priest, a Levite, and a Samaritan….
Our verse for this week is Psalm 27:1: The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
Luke chapters 9 and 10. Now let’s read it!
27:1 The LORD is my light and my salvation;
whom shall I fear?
The LORD is the stronghold of my life;
of whom shall I be afraid?