Daily Light from the Lighthouse
"And when He had called His twelve disciples to Him..."
We love to use words like elite and special. There is a sound of importance and superiority in such words. These twelve disciples held such distinction. They were as set apart of a group as could be. At one point they even let it get to their head a little and began to argue about which would be the greatest in the kingdom. A quick study of their lives reveals that they all had their own issues. We all of course know "doubting" Thomas. What about "speak first think later" Peter? Philip struggled because he had trouble rationalizing all that Jesus taught. Then, there is famously Judas, which Jesus Himself said was full of the devil.
For some reason, when we read about the failings of these men, we become encouraged. They weren't perfect, far from it. They were just like us, and they had been chosen by God to do a special task in spite of all their failings. There is probably no greater picture of grace and mercy than when God chooses to use the weak to lead the strong. The elite in the kingdom of God are only that by the sovereign choice of the Most High God.
God extends a call upon each of our lives. That call is different for each individual, but it does not mean that it is any less important. His desire is to use us for His glory so that His grace might be continually on public display. He enters into the world of our frailty, ignorance, pride, and foolishness and calls us out to Himself. He has a work for each of us to do. He called the disciples to do a work but not without three things.
If you study the chapter in its entirety, Jesus first handed them their marching orders (5-14). They were to walk into this world by the power of His name and proclaim the Word of the Lord. That call has not changed in the 2,000 years since. We have received from Christ the command to go make disciples. Second, Jesus gave the disciples a word of warning (16-26). This task that they had embarked on would cause them to be hated by the world. Persecution would most definitely come, because so many were opposed to their message. Even today there are many that despise the truth of the Word. If you stand for Christ, you will be described as a bigot and narrow-minded, but these insults or persecutions will not change the power of the message. Finally, Jesus instructed them about the seriousness of the task (27-42). This was no game. They were not proclaiming the gospel of social favor. The stakes that lie before them were as serious as Heaven and hell. How serious minded we must also be about the task that we have been given! As one of God's chosen people, you have been called to the elite forces of spiritual warfare. Enter it boldly with the banner of Christ always before you.
May you go out into a needy world today!