Today’s Reading: Luke 10:17-20
Daily Lectionary: Deuteronomy 1:19-36; Matthew 5:21-48
Nothing shall hurt you. (Luke 10:19)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. Jesus had earlier sent 72 disciples to go out and prepare His way. They were to go with very few supplies, announce the peace of God, and rely on the generosity of strangers for their wellbeing. This sort of thing seems fairly impossible before it happens, but is amazing when it does.
The 72 returned, extremely excited and amazed by what had happened to them. Not only were their physical needs taken care of, but demons were also cast out in the Name of Jesus. They’d seen more than they thought was even possible. Perhaps the angels fought on their side?
Jesus, of course, knew what the 72 would find on their missionary journey. He’d authorized them to stomp serpents and scorpions, and even the power of the enemy, and nothing would hurt them! Nothing! They were given authority over the devil, the world, and their own sinful flesh. And yet, Jesus tells them that this is not all about flashy exorcisms and healings. There’s more to the Christian life than the immediately apparent miracles. The more important thing was for them to rejoice that their names are written in heaven.
We live in a time where it seems that the snakes, scorpions, and the power of the devil are on the rise. Do we still have authority over these things? Most certainly, yes, we do. Demons have been cast from your life through the Word of the Lord. As you are splashed in Holy Baptism, the serpents and scorpions have quickly scattered from your path.
And even more than this, your names have been written in heaven. Rejoice! The Revelation talks about the Book of Life which is held in heaven. Those whose names are written in this book are brought into the eternal city of God. Have you ever tried to board an airplane when your name is not on the list? You can’t do it. The same goes for these names written in heaven. Because your name is there, you belong there. Whatever amazing miracles you witness throughout your life, rejoice first that your name is written in heaven. You belong with Christ Jesus, and ultimately nothing will hurt you, not even death. Rejoice! In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.
Everlasting God, You have ordained and constituted the service of angels and men in a wonderful order. Mercifully grant that, as Your holy angels always serve and worship You in heaven, so by Your appointment they may also help and defend us here on earth; through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen. (Collect for St. Michael and All Angels)
Audio Reflections Speaker: Pastor Duane Bamsch