It goes without saying that if we believers don’t leave the safety and warmth of our church walls the evil will start knocking on our doors. And it is already happening!! In Luke 10 Jesus chooses seventy-two “other” disciples and sends them out. He sends them out in pairs to all the towns and places he planned to visit. You might say they were His offensive line and Jesus is the quarterback. Here is the scripture reference for the whole thing. Luke 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.
I hope you notice they were going ahead of Jesus onto the field of play and preparing a way for the message of the gospel. Jesus told them to ask the Lord to send more laborers to the harvest field. He also told them they were going to be like lambs going out among wolves. The world in all of its glory (yeah right) is in need of some called lambs who represent the “lamb of God” and preach the gospel from the Word of God. Those sent were to be focused and use their time wisely as Jesus told them to not stop and talk with anyone along the way. In other words, don’t get distracted. Have you ever had that guy that wanted to get you to stop and talk with him and before you know it he has taken all the time you should have been serving and milked it until you have no time to serve? These people are everywhere and they are best left to talk to themselves because the work of the Lord is needed and time is wasting away.
In football terms, you can hear announcers say again and again about the offense and the defense “The offense needs to get something going because the defense is worn out from being on the field the whole time. The offense must score some points and hold the ball longer so the defense can refresh themselves for the next time they go on the field. If the offense doesn’t have a game plan and they don’t execute well the defense will have to stay on the field too long and that only allows the other team to score at will. Our faith is about so much more than football analogies and our fight is dealing with a field of souls. In verse 2 Jesus says 2 “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. This harvesting is a “field of souls” that need to have the opportunity to hear the gospel and respond to the message. So this field is much greater than the football field, of course. The point is we need to be about the work of the Lord out in the world and sure we will be lambs in the midst of wolves, but God is with us. If that is the case, then who can be against us. Answer: No one!!
Jesus’ last instructions were crucial. 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. This shows “time is wasting” and it is slipping away and the opportunities with it. Today is the day of salvation and today is the day of the offense taking the field and scoring victory after victory. If you know Christ you are on the winning team, so get out there and play with Jesus calling the plays and supplying the needed power.
The Pilgrimage continues….