Faith over Fear
Series: Seek & Save
June 30, 2019
Dave Smith takes on the beginning verses of Luke chapter 10 on the Fifth Sunday Missions Emphasis. Partial recording only with our apologies. The recording software had storage space issues during the sermon.
FAITH OVER FEAR
Like Sheep Among Wolves
Luke 10:3 ... Go your way; behold, I am sending you out as lambs in the midst of wolves.
Luke 9:57-62 ... 57 As they were going along the road, someone said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” 58 And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.” 59 To another he said, “Follow me.” But he said, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.” 60 And Jesus[g] said to him, “Leave the dead to bury their own dead. But as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” 61 Yet another said, “I will follow you, Lord, but let me first say farewell to those at my home.” 62 Jesus said to him, “No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.”
THE BIG IDEA:
Whether RECEIVED or REJECTED, Jesus’ disciples are sent on mission to proclaim the SAVIOR
1. A Difficult Mission (vs. 1-2)
1 After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them on ahead of him, two by two, into every town and place where he himself was about to go. 2 And he said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.
- Requiring personal sacrifice … remember, Jesus had just revealed to them the level of commitment needed and the urgency to act on that commitment.
- Requiring combined effort … Isn’t interesting that despite the lack of workers willing to go, Jesus insisted they go in pairs?
Ecclesiastes 4:12 (NLT) ... A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.
- Requiring intense conviction … a conviction that was displayed not only in their willingness to go and proclaim the coming of the Savior but also in their impassioned prayers—petitions for more workers (to expand the impact and influence of Christ, not to quit or move into a supervisory role).
2. A Daunting Mission (vs. 4-8)
4 Carry no moneybag, no knapsack, no sandals, and greet no one on the road. 5 Whatever house you enter, first say, ‘Peace be to this house!’ 6 And if a son of peace is there, your peace will rest upon him. But if not, it will return to you. 7 And remain in the same house, eating and drinking what they provide, for the laborer deserves his wages. Do not go from house to house. 8 Whenever you enter a town and they receive you, eat what is set before you.
“Any man who takes Jesus Christ seriously becomes the target of the devil … most church members do not give Satan enough trouble to arouse his opposition.” — Vance Havner
- Trusting God’s provision (protection) … Don’t take much with you … speaking figuratively, it is
Hebrews 12:1-2a (NET) ... Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, we must get rid of every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and run with endurance the race set out for us, 2 keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of our faith.
- Seeking individual hospitality (blessing) … they were to pay attention and recognize that others would want to offer God’s blessing to them … Don’t rob others of the same opportunity to bless you simply because you always want to be the blesser and not the blessee!
- Enjoying Christian generosity (contentment) … not every place is going to throw a banquet in your honor. Sometimes you are going to get McDonald’s gift certificates
Philippians 4:10-13 (NIV) ... 10 I rejoiced greatly in the Lord that at last you renewed your concern for me. Indeed, you were concerned, but you had no opportunity to show it. 11 I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. 12 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength.
3. A Dubious Mission
9 Heal the sick in it and say to them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’ 10 But whenever you enter a town and they do not receive you, go into its streets and say, 11 ‘Even the dust of your town that clings to our feet we wipe off against you. Nevertheless know this, that the kingdom of God has come near.’ 12 I tell you, it will be more bearable on that day for Sodom than for that town.
16 “The one who hears you hears me, and the one who rejects you rejects me, and the one who rejects me rejects him who sent me.”
- A questionable responsibility, but a clear motive … Jesus outlines how to handle being rejected. He doesn’t say “if a town doesn’t receive you …” he says “whenever” this happens … we’re happy to perform missions when success is evident it is harder to go (and harder to keep going) when the success is less evident …
- An indefinite reaction, but a clear message … wouldn’t it be nice to know who was going to accept Jesus and who was going to reject him. Saves time, saves discouragement, etc. While that would be much easier. Not how it works … illustration: Jesus parable about the sower/farmer
Matthew 13:23 (NIV) … the seed falling on good soil refers to someone who hears the word and understands it. This is the one who produces a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.”
- A possible rejection, but a clear mandate … whether we are going across the street or throughout of community or even around the world to share the Gospel, we can face rejection … rejection can take on many forms (polite indifference, resentment or even, in the worst case scenario, violent threats and actions).
Luke 21:12-19 (ESV) ... 12 But before all this they will lay their hands on you and persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues and prisons, and you will be brought before kings and governors for my name's sake. 13 This will be your opportunity to bear witness. 14 Settle it therefore in your minds not to meditate beforehand how to answer, 15 for I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which none of your adversaries will be able to withstand or contradict. 16 You will be delivered up even by parents and brothers[c] and relatives and friends, and some of you they will put to death. 17 You will be hated by all for my name's sake. 18 But not a hair of your head will perish. 19 By your endurance you will gain your lives.
THE NEXT STEP:
Make a Choice …
- Act in Faith … embrace the opportunity, throw caution to the wind and trust that God will guide your effort and reward your faith … define your success clearly!
- React with Fear … realize everything negative that has happened, could happen or, even as you have determined, will happen and make whatever excuses you might imagine: not enough time, they won’t listen, I’m not ready, someone else is better suited … I’ll do it the next time!
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