Power In Perspective
Lord God, what a mighty and awesome God You are! I give You my praise and worship now.
Read LUKE 10:17-24
 The seventy-two returned with joy and said, “Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name.”  He replied, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.  I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.  However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”  At that time Jesus, full of joy through the Holy Spirit, said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this is what you were pleased to do.  “All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows who the Son is except the Father, and no one knows who the Father is except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.”  Then he turned to his disciples and said privately, “Blessed are the eyes that see what you see.  For I tell you that many prophets and kings wanted to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.” Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectWhat reason for rejoicing is the most important?
The disciples return from the mission field savoring the sweetness of success (17a). They display no arrogance for they are quick to acknowledge that all has been done “in your name” (17b). Yet Jesus responds by sounding a warning. Why?
Power is necessary for mission; that’s why Jesus later instructs his disciples to wait until they are empowered by the Spirit (24:49). Yet power is potentially dangerous. Hence Jesus’ reminder that he is the source of their power (19). Then Jesus puts power and success in perspective by drawing his disciples’ attention to the most fundamental and compelling reason for joy: their relationship with God (20). The disciples are blessed (23) because, having received and accepted God’s revelation, they enjoy a relationship with him; and Jesus himself rejoices at this (21).
Our relationship with God is the reason for mission, and only continual abiding in this relationship empowers us for ministry (John 15:4,5). Yet neither success nor failure in mission and ministry can take away the unquenchable joy that springs from our relationship with Jesus.
Reflect: Happiness depends on happenings; joy depends on Jesus. In what (or in whom) are you rejoicing today?
Lord, help me to keep my perspective clear so that I find my joy first of all in my relationship with You.
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