Meditation Moment | Empowered & Obedient

He told them: “Take nothing for the journey—no staff, no bag, no bread, no money, no extra shirt. Whatever house you enter, stay there until you leave that town. If people do not welcome you, leave their town and shake the dust off your feet as a testimony against them.” So they set out and went from village to village, proclaiming the good news and healing people everywhere.

Luke 9:3-6 (NIV)

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Throughout the Bible, we have explored many different journeys of the discipleship. On my journey, I have learned that God has and will grant you the endurance to complete the task, (Romans 5:3–4, Galatians 6:9, Ephesians 6:10–20). As those who were called by God learn the importance of empowered and obedient. God gives directions to his disciples as they went out on a special mission of preaching about God’s kingdom. In this passage, we learned that they were only able to take the clothes on their backs. I can’t image not having my skin care or my daily necessities. Can you?  

The disciples had to rely only on what others would provide in the way of hospitality. Can you rely on those around you? How are you trusting God during this process? The disciples were to look for people who would be friendly and open to receiving them. Hospitality was an important social expectation in the first-century Mediterranean region and became an important Christian virtue (Hebrews 13:2). Luke, the author of this Gospel, experienced the hospitality of many people as he journeyed with Paul the Apostle on the various missionary journeys recorded in Acts. 

Not everyone would be welcoming, however. Jesus warns his disciples in verse 5 about those who would reject them, including entire villages and towns. In that case, the disciples were to remove everything about the town from their persons, even the dust they picked up while walking the streets and paths. All relationship with the town was symbolically ended. The people deserved any judgment they received. Rejecting the disciples meant rejecting the message of the kingdom they proclaimed. 

In verse 6, Luke briefly gives the summary that the disciples obediently responded to Jesus’ instructions and went throughout the area of Galilee, where Jesus spent a significant part of his ministry. They followed Jesus’ example of preaching and healing. They had watched him and had the head knowledge, but they could not carry out their mission without the spiritual power and authority given directly by Jesus.  

Our personal and professional experiences assist us with applying skills as we embody our mission here at VOA Ohio & Indiana. We can even have spiritual power and authority through the Bible and the presence of the Holy Spirit with us. The missing element we must also have for success in the mission to the world is obedience. In verse 6, the disciples modeled obedience as they went out and preached the good news about Jesus. The shortest sentence in the English language is GO! We cannot sit back with all the preparation we have done and successfully carry out the mission to which God has called us unless we go in obedience. 

References: Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® 

Written by: LaRanza Carson, Program Director

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