Archive for the ‘apostle’ tag
The text for this lesson is Luke 10:1–24
- God chose the seventy-two to serve Him for a special task. God places us in various callings, giving us opportunities to serve Him and share our faith with others.
- Law: I sin when I think only church workers serve God in their calling. I sin when I despise anyone’s vocation.
- Gospel: God, in His mercy, provides all vocations to meet our needs and in His Son, Jesus, provides for our spiritual needs through pastors, Christian parents, and others. God forgives my sins of pride and arrogance for Jesus’ sake. God forgives my sin of feeling unworthy or inadequate because I am not in church work.
- Today we study how Jesus sent out seventy-two men to heal the sick and proclaim the Gospel. We also will discuss the doctrine of Christian vocation, which comes from the Latin word vocatio, meaning “calling.” The seventy-two were called to do a specific task for the Lord. Likewise, each Christian has one or more callings to do specific tasks in service of the Lord, for example, in family, country, and workplace. But there is one major difference between the calling of the seventy-two and our own callings. What is this difference, and why is it important to make this distinction? What are some examples of ways that Christians sometimes fail to make this distinction today? How does the Lord call us into our various stations in life?
- In today’s lesson, Jesus says that the judgment on any town that rejects the message of the seventy-two will be harsher than on Sodom. This town was proverbially corrupt. Its inhabitants participated in open sexual immorality, including homosexuality (Genesis 19:5; Jude 7) and also lived decadently with no regard for the poor and needy (Ezekiel 16:49). According to 1 Corinthians 6:9–11, what activities have Christians been called away from through Baptism? What does this passage suggest about the content of Christian preaching?
- Much like Jesus had called the Twelve (Luke 9:1) and sent them out to preach and heal the sick, He now calls seventy-two men and sends them out ahead of Him (Luke 10:1). The word translated “sent” is the Greek word apostello, like apostle, which means “one who is sent.” In the ancient world, people in positions of authority often selected delegates and sent them out with the authority to speak and act on their behalf. This is even true today, such as when the president sends delegates to foreign lands to speak and act in his place. How does Luke 10:16 make it clear to the sent ones what kind of authority they had? According to John 20:21–23, what were the apostles eventually authorized to do? How does Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 20:25–28 prevent the ones He sends from abusing the authority they are given?
- In Luke 10:3–4, Jesus sent the seventy-two out “as lambs in the midst of wolves” with no provisions for the journey. This sounds terrifying, but in what way was Jesus actually blessing them? What is the similar message that Jesus gives us in Matthew 6:31–34?
- In Luke 10:9, Jesus tells the seventy-two to heal the sick and proclaim, “The kingdom of God has come near to you.” Based on what Jesus says in Luke 7:18–23, why might He have had the seventy-two perform miraculous signs along with preaching? Why do we no longer need miraculous signs to accompany Christian preaching today?
- But this teaching may also cause us to stumble. If God chose us to be saved, does that mean that He elected others to be damned? According to 2 Peter 3:9, does God desire that any people be condemned? According to 1 Timothy 2:3–6, for whom did Christ die? Whom does God desire to be saved? When we struggle to understand all of these things, what does Romans 11:33–36 teach us?
- In Luke 10:5, Jesus told the seventy-two that whenever they entered a house they were to say, “Peace be to this house.” Since they were sent out with Jesus’ authority to proclaim the Gospel, their greeting of peace was not ineffectual but actually delivered peace and salvation to those who received it. As we come to God’s house each week for worship, what parts of the service proclaim peace to us?
- God’s Word helps us understand how we are to live within our various vocations. Discuss the various vocations of Christians described in 1 Peter 2:9–17 and 3:14–16. What basic form of evangelism is every Christian called to do? According to 1 Peter 4:10, do all people have the same gifts and vocations? Why or why not?