Message to the world – part 1

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Luke 9 v 1 – 9

Luke 9 v 9 But Herod said, “I beheaded John. Who, then, is this I hear such things about?” And he tried to see him.

So far we have seen different aspects of Salvation as presented by different individuals. They were all, in and of themselves, wonderful happenings. But they were all focussed on the individual. As significant as individual salvation is, there is still more and greater things to be done. There is a whole dischordant and broken world to think about. The Christian impulse is to see the hope of the kingdom of God established in all corners of the earth. So Christ is now going to arrange that this great message should be preached to all Israel. But notice how Luke records Christ’s sending of his apostles.

First he delegates power to them (v1) Then in verse 2 – 5 he gives them their mandate. Then in verse 6 they set off to do the job. We have no samples of what they preached, no description of any exorcisms and no details of any healings. Why is that? Because the main thing Luke wanted his friend Onesimus to know, and what God divinely wants us to know is that they were promptly sent to preach! And what did they preach? We are told in verse 6 it was the ‘Gospel’. They preached good news. The Kingdom of God for which the Jews had waited a long time was really coming. Jewish people knew that when the kingdom arrived, it would be glorious and in keeping with the Old Testament description of that coming age.

But here Luke shows us the true nature of the Kingdom of God. The Apostles were given supernatural power to set people free from illness and demonic possession. In other words the good news is not merely an exhortation to be better than we are, but rather, to quote Hebrews 6 verse 5 a demonstration of “the power of the age to come.” Here that age was breaking through into their world.

That is what happened when you were brought to believe in Jesus. The power of the coming age broke into your heart and mind and you repented and believed the Gospel. You may have many problems and you may be tempted to wonder where God is, in the midst of your burdens. But if you believe in Jesus then however weak and frail you may feel, you have been the recipient of the power of the age to come.

Problems will pass away. Indeed, life itself will pass away. But the gift of eternal life you have received will never end.

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