Our “summer travels with Jesus” continue this week with Jesus selecting 70 of his followers for “leadership training.” The Kingdom of God is too big a project for one person and many more laborers are needed. Jesus is sending them out to the communities within reach of his journey’s path, and as they are released to do their work Jesus rehearses with them (and us) the essential truths of his message and work:
God’s servants will always be vulnerable in this world. This we embrace, because our vulnerability testifies to the weak and powerless that God’s strength to endure is greater than the principalities of this world.
God’s servants are sent to give out the good news, not take from others. Whenever we encounter people who are afraid of losing their possessions, we are careful to leave behind even the dust from between their floorboards…so it will always be said that the gospel is offered “freely, and without price.”
God’s servants rely on the hospitality of others at all times. We must always remember who were the first to welcome and receive our message. Ours is not to climb the social ladders of fame and notoriety, but to raise up the social status of our very first friends in every place we go.
Powerless, vulnerable, and armed with nothing but Christ’s blessing, the 70 went out, and returned with great joy as they witnessed the power of God unfolding before them. Jesus reminded them in their joy that having God’s power in this world is not the purpose of God’s Kingdom, only a means to the true end: by participating in God’s work on earth, their names are forever written in heaven!