Demonstrating the Kingdom While Preparing Men For the Manifestation of the Kingdom

Today’s selected reading continues in the New Testament gospel narrative concerning the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ as it was written and recorded by the beloved physician Luke. More specifically, today’s passage is found in the first twenty-four verses of the tenth chapter of this New Testament book. When you come to this particular portion of Scripture you will find a narrative and account that is recorded in the New Testament gospel written by Luke alone. Nowhere in any of the other four gospels will you find the account of Jesus ordaining and appointing seventy others whom He would send out before Him and before His face two by two into every city and place where He Himself would come. In all reality, I find it absolutely incredible to read the words which are found in the tenth chapter of the gospel narrative written by the beloved physician Luke, for we know that Jesus ordained and appointed the twelve disciples as apostles and ambassadors which He would send out into every city, town, and village into which He would enter, and now we find Jesus ordaining and appointing another seventy individuals who would go before Him and who would go before His face. If there is one thing I can’t help but think about when reading this particular passage of Scripture it’s how there were those who were ordained, appointed, chosen and raised up for one very specific purpose in the earth—namely, to prepare the way for Jesus of Nazareth to enter and to arrive. You cannot read the four gospel narratives without at all encountering and coming face to face with this truly remarkable concept, for what the gospel narratives reveal are those individuals who were specifically ordained, appointed, chosen and set apart to make room and prepare the way for the arrival of Jesus the Christ. Oh pause for a moment and think about how absolutely incredible this truly is when you take the time to think about it, for it calls and draws our attention to the truth surrounding making room and preparing the way for the manifestation and arrival of the Lord Jesus Christ in every city, in every village, and in every town into which He would enter.

            I sit here today thinking about this truly astonishing truth and reality surrounding the ordaining and appointing of these individuals who were called, chosen, ordained and appointed within their generation, and were chosen and ordained for a very specific purpose. I can’t read the gospel narratives which were written and recorded concerning the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ and not encounter and come face to face with the tremendous truth surrounding those who were ordained and appointed for one very specific and powerful purpose in their generation—namely, to make room and to prepare the way for the Messiah to enter in and come among them. It is absolutely undeniable when reading the gospel narratives that there were specific individuals whose mission, whose purpose and whose assignment would be to go before the Messiah and before the Christ into those places which He would enter and come—and not merely enter, but also prepare the way for His coming and for His arrival. What makes this truly astonishing and remarkable is when you consider the fact that there were essentially three different realms of this preparing the way and making room for the coming and arrival of the Messiah and Christ within the earth. If and as you read the four gospel narratives written by the gospel authors you will encounter and come face to face with the initial prophetic witness that was ordained, appointed and raised up by the living and eternal God to prepare the way and to make room for the emergence and arrival of the Messiah. As you read the four gospel narratives concerning the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ you will find that John the Baptist was ordained and appointed—even before the angel Gabriel would appear unto Zacharias beside the altar in the Temple and speak of the birth of John the Baptist during those days. Centuries and generations before the angel Gabriel would be sent from the throne room of heaven unto the Temple in Jerusalem to appear and speak unto Zacharias we find and discover that John the Baptist was ordained and appointed by the living and eternal God to prepare the way and to make room for the coming and arrival of the Messiah and Christ.

            Oh I cannot help but think about and consider the incredibly awesome and powerful truth surrounding John the Baptist and how he was one who was specifically ordained and appointed by the living and eternal God as the first witness for and of the Messiah and Christ. You cannot read the gospel narratives and not encounter and come face to face with the truly awesome and powerful truth that John the Baptist was the first prophetic witness which was sent by God unto men to prepare the way and to make room for the coming and arrival of the Messiah. It is truly something astonishing to read the words which are found within the gospels and to come face to face with the fact that John the Baptist was ordained and appointed by the living God to prepare the way, to make space, and to create room for the coming of the Messiah. Perhaps the single greatest purpose, ministry and assignment of John the Baptist was not to make a name for himself, nor even to make himself famous during those days, but rather to prepare the way, to make room, and to create a space for the coming of the Messiah. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this point and how absolutely incredible it truly is, for it calls and draws our attention to the fact that this was a prophetic witness that was raised up during those days before Jesus would be publicly revealed and manifested in the earth as the Messiah, as the Christ, and as the Son of the living God. If and as you read the gospel accounts and narratives of the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ you will find and discover that this was a man who was sent from God to bear witness to the Light which come into the world and would give light unto all those unto whom it would appear and manifest. You cannot read and study the life of John the Baptist and not encounter and come to the point and place where you realize that he was a man who was sent from God for one specific purpose and one specific reason—namely, to create a space and to make room for the coming of the Messiah.

            If there is one thing I can’t help but think about when considering the narrative of John the Baptist it’s that while he would preach and proclaim the message that there was coming One among them who would baptize with the Holy Ghost and with fire, he would not reveal the specific time in which the Messiah would be manifested. As you take the time to read the four gospel narratives written at the beginning of the New Testament you will not find in any of the accounts John the Baptist giving a definitive time for when the Messiah would indeed and would in fact be manifested. Although John the Baptist would indeed and would in fact publicly proclaim the arrival and appearance of Jesus the Christ there is absolutely no place where he would definitively proclaim and declare the exact timing of the coming and arrival of the Messiah. Oh it was indeed true that John the Baptist would announce and proclaim the coming of One who would baptize with the Holy Ghost and with fire, however, he had absolutely no knowledge concerning the specific time when the Messiah would come. In fact, it was revealed unto John that upon Him whom he saw the Spirit descend and rest upon—that individual would be the Messiah and the Christ which was to come. Although John the Baptist would not know, nor would he understand the hour in which the Messiah and Christ would arrive and be manifested in the earth, he would be given a sign that would confirm the Messiah’s presence among them. It would be John the Baptist who would emphatically declare and proclaim unto those who came unto him to hear him preach that it would be upon the One whom he saw the Spirit descending and resting upon who would be the Messiah and Christ who was to come. Oh we dare not miss and lose sight of this, for it calls and draws our attention to the incredibly powerful truth that although John the Baptist would indeed prepare the way, make room and create a space for the coming of the Messiah and the Christ, he would not provide a definitive date and time for His emergence and arrival.

            The more I read and the more I consider the words which are found in this particular portion and passage of Scripture the more I am brought face to face with the fact that John the Baptist was the first witness and testimony in the midst of the earth which would prepare the way, which would make room, and which would create a space and place for the Messiah and the Christ. Perhaps one of the greatest truths surrounding the coming of the Messiah and Christ into the earth is that there was one who was ordained and appointed to go before His face and prepare the way for Him. There was one who was ordained and appointed—not to go into every city, nor into every town, nor into every village into which Jesus would enter, but rather to prepare and to make room for the coming of the Messiah and for the coming of the Christ. How absolutely incredible it is to think about and consider the words which are found in the four gospel narratives written concerning the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ, and how there was the initial witness which would be raised up before His face to prepare the way, to make room, and to create a space and place for His coming and arrival. Oh there would be an initial preparation, and an initial creation of a space and place for the coming of the Messiah and Christ within the earth, and that would be accomplished, carried out and fulfilled by John the Baptist. John the Baptist would indeed and would in fact be that prophetic voice and witness who would be sent from God to prepare the way and make room for the Messiah and the Christ. This preparation would not only be done through his preaching and the message he would proclaim, but also through baptism unto repentance for the remission of sins. This preparation which would take place would indeed and would in fact be created and manifested in the earth through two distinct realities—the first being through the preaching of John the Baptist, and the second being through the baptism of John. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this, for it calls and draws our attention to the absolutely tremendous truth surrounding the ministry of John the Baptist and what he was called, chosen, ordained and appointed to do in the midst of the earth.

            I am absolutely and completely convinced that the life of John the Baptist must indeed be recognized and understood, for he would indeed be the first witness and testimony which would be raised up in the midst of the earth to prepare the way and make room for the coming of the Messiah. What makes this all the more intriguing when you take the time to think about it is when you consider how at that time the name JESUS was not yet known, nor had it yet been manifested. There would be a time when John the Baptist would make room, create a place, and prepare the way for the coming of the Messiah, however, he would know neither the time nor the hour of His appearing, nor even His name. It is something worth thinking about and considering when reading the words found in the gospel narratives concerning the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ, for within the gospels themselves we find this prophetic witness by the name of John the Baptist emerging within the earth to prepare the way for the coming of the Messiah, although nowhere in any of the gospels do we find John the Baptist every publicly mentioning and proclaiming the name of JESUS. What’s more, is that there is absolutely nowhere in any of the gospels where you find John the Baptist preaching and proclaiming the time and the hour of the coming of the Messiah and the Christ. How absolutely and incredibly interesting this is when you take the time to truly think about it, for John the Baptist was indeed ordained and appointed by the living and eternal God to be the prophetic witness which would prepare the way for the coming of the Messiah, however, he would publicly proclaim and speak of the coming of the Messiah and Christ without knowing the hour or time in which He would come, nor yet His name, nor even yet who He was. Oh it was indeed true that He would be given a sign concerning the Messiah, and it would be that sign which would confirm the presence of the One who was before him, and how that One who was before him was indeed the Christ and the Messiah which was to come.

            Oh dear brother, oh dear sister—it is absolutely necessary that we recognize and understand this particular truth, for it is when we understand the truth surrounding John the Baptist we are able to understand the apostolic witness that was found in the gospel narratives. What’s more, is that I am absolutely and completely convinced that we must needs understand the prophetic witness that was found within the life of John the Baptist, for it is when we understand the prophetic witness surrounding John the Baptist we are actually able to better understand the apostolic witness of the twelve disciples who were ordained as apostles and ambassadors of the kingdom, as well as the additional witness and testimony of those seventy who were ordained and appointed by the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. I am absolutely and completely convinced we must needs recognize and understand the tremendous truth surrounding John the Baptist and that for which he had been called, ordained and appointed by the living God, for what we find and read concerning him is the incredible truth that he was the initial witness that was raised up by the living God to prepare the way, to create a space, and to make room for the coming of the Messiah. It is absolutely impossible to read and understand the narratives surrounding the ordaining and appointing of the twelve disciples, as well as the seventy others who were appointed by Jesus Himself and sent before His face into the cities, towns and villages into which He Himself would come. There is not a doubt in my mind that if you want to truly understand the words and language surrounding the appointment of the twelve, as well as the seventy you must needs understand the prophetic witness of John the Baptist. It is the prophetic witness of John the Baptist that calls and draws our attention to that initial witness which was raised up before the Messiah and Christ would be manifested and revealed unto men which would prepare the way and make room for the coming of the Messiah. Oh it is with this in mind I invite you to consider the following words which are found within the gospel narratives concerning John the Baptist, and how he was ordained and appointed by the living God to prepare the room for the Messiah before He would actually be revealed:

            “There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe. He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. He came unto his own, and his own received him not. But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth. John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for he was before me. And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace. For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ. No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him” (John 1:6-18).

            “And this is the record of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, Who art thou? And he confessed, and denied not; but confessed, I am not the Christ. And they asked him, What then? Art thou Elias? And he saith, I am not. Art thou that prophet? And he answered, No. Then said they unto him, Who art thou? That we may give an answer to them that sent us. What sayest thou of thyse3lf? He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias. And they which were sent were of the Pharisees. And they asked him, and said unto him, Why baptizest thou then, if thou be not that Christ, nor Elias, neither that prophet? John answered them, saying, I baptize with water: but there standeth one among you, whom ye know not; He it is, who coming after me is preferred before me, whose shoe’s latchet I am not worthy to unloose. These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where John was baptizing” (John 1:19-28).

            “The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me. And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water. And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode. And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost. And I saw, and bare records that this is the Son of God” (John 1:29-34).

            “Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples; and looking upon Jesus as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God” (John 1:35).

            “After these things came Jesus and His disciples into the land of Judaea; and there he tarried with them, and baptized. And John also was baptizing in Aenon near to Salim, because there was much water there: and they came, and were baptized. For John was not yet cast into prison. Then there arose a question between some of John’s disciples and the Jews about purifying. And they came unto John, and said unto him, Rabbi, he that was with thee beyond Jordan, to whom thou barest witness, behold, the same baptizeth, and all men come to him. John answered and said,  A man can receive nothing, except it be given him from heaven. Ye yourselves bear me witness, that I said, I am not the Christ, but that I am sent before him. He that hath the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice: this my joy therefore is fulfilled. He must increase, but I must decrease. He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all. And what he hath seen and heard, that he testifieth; and no man receiveth his testimony. He that hath received his testimony hath set to his seal that God is true. For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him. The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand. He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him” (John 3:22-36).

            “And there appeared unto him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. And when Zacharias saw him, he was troubled, and fear fell upon him. But the angel said unto him, Fear not, Zacharias: for thy prayer is heard; and thy wife Elisabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John. And thou shalt have joy and gladness; and many shall rejoice at his birth. For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine, nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother’s womb. And many of the children of Israel shall he turn to the Lord their God. And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord” (Luke 1:12-17).

            “…the word of God came unto John the son of Zacharias in the wilderness. And he came into all the country about Jordan, preaching the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins; As it is written in the book of the words of Esaias the prophet, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight. Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be brought low; and the crooked shall be ma de straight, and the rough ways shall be made smooth; and all flesh shall see the salvation of God. Then said he to the multitude that came forth to be baptized of him, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, That God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham. And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: every tree therefore which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire” (Luke 3:4-9).

            “And the people asked him, saying, What shall we do then? HE answereth and saith unto them, He that hath two coats, let him impart to him that hath none; and he that hath meat, let him do likewise. Then came also publicans to be baptized, and said unto him, Master, what shall we do? And he said unto them, Exact no more than that which is appointed you. And the soldiers likewise demanded of him, saying, And what shall we do? And he said unto them, Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages” (Luke 3:10-14).

            “And as the people were in expectation, and all men mused in their hearts of John, whether he were the Christ, or not: john answered, saying unto them all, I indeed baptize you with water; but one mightier than I cometh, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire: whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and will gather the wheat into his garner; but the chaff he will burn with fire unquenchable. And many other things in his exhortation preached he unto the people” (Luke 3:15-18).

            It is absolutely necessary that we call and draw our attention to the words which are found within these passages of Scripture, for within these chapters we are brought face to face with the awesome truth surrounding John the Baptist and how John the Baptist was indeed and was in fact ordained and appointed as a witness unto the Messiah and Christ in the midst of the earth. As it pertains to John the Baptist we must needs recognize and acknowledge the fact that he would spend a certain period of time preaching unto all those who would come unto him to hear him preach, and would speak of the Messiah and the Christ who was to come, however, he would not provide a definitive time frame for when the Messiah and Christ would emerge and appear within the earth. John the Baptist knew that there was One coming—one of whose latchet of his shoes he was not worthy to unloose, and one who would baptize with the Holy Ghost and with fire. Oh it is truly something worth thinking about and considering when reading the words which are found in this portion and passage of Scripture, for although John the Baptist did not know the exact hour and time in which the Messiah and Christ would come, he would indeed know that the Messiah and Christ was in fact coming—and not only that He was coming, but also that He would baptize with the Holy Ghost and with fire. How absolutely wonderful and tremendous it is to think about the prophetic witness and ministry of John the Baptist, and how John the Baptist was ordained and appointed by the living and eternal God to prepare the way, to make room, and to create a space in the earth and in the land for the coming and the arrival of the Messiah. It is truly something worth thinking about and considering when reading these words how John the Baptist was specifically ordained and appointed by the living and eternal God for the sole purpose of bearing witness and being a prophetic voice that would point and draw men to the Messiah and the Christ who was to come. John the Baptist would be that initial voice that would be raised up in the midst of the earth to proclaim the message concerning the Messiah and the Christ which was to come. Oh how truly awesome and wonderful it is to think about and consider this awesome reality surrounding John the Baptist, for his voice would be the initial voice that would call men and women to make room and create a space for the coming of the Messiah.

            With all of this being said concerning John the Baptist it is absolutely necessary that we recognize and understand that eventually John the Baptist would be imprisoned by Herod after he would rebuke him on account of Herodias his brother Philip’s wife. John the Baptist would indeed be imprisoned by Herod, and he would remain there in that prison until the opportune time would come when Herodias could exact her grudge, her offense, and her bitterness against John the Baptist. John the Baptist would indeed be a powerful and prophetic witness in the midst of the earth for the coming of the Messiah and the coming of the Christ, and once that ministry was completed and finished he would find himself in prison. Once John the Baptist had completed and carried out that which he was ordained and appointed to do he would indeed and would in fact be imprisoned on account of Herodias who was the wife of Herod’s brother Philip. John the Baptist would remain in prison until the time of his death when Herod would order an executioner to enter into his prison cell and behead him, while bringing his head unto him on a platter. If there is one thing we must needs recognize and understand when reading the words which are found in this portion and passage of Scripture it’s that John the Baptist would indeed be the original voice of one crying in the wilderness and calling on men to prepare the way for the Messiah and the Christ, however, there would come a point in time when there would be other voices which would be raised up to bear witness concerning Jesus the Christ. While it is true John the Baptist would be the prophetic witness that would testify and speak of Jesus as the Christ, as the Messiah, as the Son of God, and as the Lamb of God, there would be others who would be raised up after him—those who would be called, ordained and appointed by Jesus Himself to go before His face into the cities, towns and villages into which He would come. Oh please don’t miss and lose sight of this, for when you read the gospel narratives you will find that there would come a point in time when Jesus would call the twelve disciples unto Himself and would ordain and appoint them as apostles and ambassadors who would go before His face and prepare the way for Him.

            If there is one thing I can’t help but think about and consider it’s that John the Baptist would appear before the Messiah and the Christ that he might prepare the way, make room and create a space for the Messiah and the Christ to emerge, and after the Messiah would be publicly revealed and proclaimed unto and among men and women during those days, there would be a second appointment and a second witness unto Christ. What we must needs realize, recognize and understand is that there would be a second witness that would emerge within the earth—one that would be raised up after men and women would indeed and would in fact know the name of JESUS. After Jesus had engaged in the public ministry for which He was sent and appointed by the Father He would ordain and appoint twelve of His disciples as His apostles and ambassadors who would go before His face. What’s more, is that not only would these disciples and apostles go before His face, but they would also be given power and authority to heal the sick, to cleanse the lepers, to raise the dead, to cast out devils, and to preach the good tidings of the kingdom of heaven. Essentially these twelve apostles were sent forth as labourers in the midst of the harvest who would go before the face of the Messiah and Christ. Oh it is truly something worth thinking about and considering this reality and truth, for it calls and draws our attention to the fact that these apostles were not only given power to exercise the dominion of the kingdom of heaven, but they were also ordained and appointed by the living Word to go before Him as His witnesses in the earth. How incredibly powerful it is to think about and consider this reality and truth, for it brings us to yet another witness that would be raised up in the midst of the earth. Oh there would be the initial prophetic witness that would be raised up by the living God to prepare the way for the Messiah and to make room for His coming and arrival, and there would be a second witness that would be raised up in the midst of the earth to fulfill and accomplish the very same mission and assignment. With this in mind, I invite you to consider the following words which are found in the tenth chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle Matthew:

            “And when He had called unto Him His twelve disciples, He gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease…These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: But go rather to the lost sheep of the hoes of Israel. And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give. Provide neither gold, nor silver, nor brass in your purses, nor scrip for your journey, neither two coats, neither shoes, nor yet staves: for the workman is worthy of his meat. And into whatsoever city or town ye shall enter, inquire who in it is worthy; and there abide till ye go thence. And when ye come into an house, salute it. And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it: but if it be not worthy, let your peace return to you. And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house of city, shake off the dust of your feet. Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment, than for that city” (Matthew 10:1-15).  

            It is with these words we are brought face to face with the fact that these twelve disciples of Christ were indeed and were in fact ordained and appointed by Jesus Himself as His witnesses which would go before His face into the cities, the towns and villages into which He Himself would come. While it was true there would be the initial prophetic witness that would go before the face of the Messiah and would prepare the way for His appearance and arrival, there would be a second witness that would be ordained and appointed in the midst of the earth—a witness that would be raised up with power and authority to exercise the dominion of the kingdom. If there is one thing we must needs recognize and understand concerning this second witness it’s that there was something drastically and largely different about this witness—namely, that this witness was given power and authority from Jesus Christ Himself. What’s more, is that not only were these twelve disciples who were ordained and appointed apostles given power and authority, but they were given power and authority to heal the sick, to cleanse the lepers, to raise the dead, to cast out unclean spirits, and to preach and proclaim the goodness of the kingdom of heaven. Oh there is something we must needs acknowledge and understand when reading these words, for these words bring us face to face with the fact that there was yet another witness that was raised up to go before the face of Jesus the Christ—not only as partners together in the work of the ministry, but also as those who would prepare the way, those who would create room, and those who would make space for the Lord Jesus Christ. These twelve apostles would be raised up and ordained by the person of Jesus Christ as those who would enter into the cities, the towns and the villages there in the midst of the land of Judaea, in the midst of the land of Galilee, as well as perhaps Jerusalem, and they were to go before the Messiah and prepare the way, create a space, and make room for Him. These twelve were invited to partner together in the work of the kingdom of heaven together with Jesus the Christ, however, that which they were called and ordained to do was something so much greater than what we might actually think about and consider. There is something absolutely wonderful and powerful about the narrative of the calling and the appointing of the twelve disciples and apostles, for these individuals were indeed raised up by the Lord Jesus Christ Himself to go before His face that they might create a space and make room for His arrival and appearing.

            CREATING SPACE AND MAKING ROOM! Oh I have to admit that I absolutely love the words which are found here in this particular portion of Scripture, for it calls and draws our attention to the absolutely awesome and powerful truth surrounding Jesus’ calling, choosing, ordaining and appointing of these twelve disciples whom He would ordain and appoint as apostles, and how they were indeed called and ordained to create space and make room for Christ. By this time the fame of Jesus had spread throughout Galilee and throughout Judaea, and men and women would travel and journey from the surrounding towns, cities, villages and regions to hear and listen to Him speak. Moreover, there would be countless men and women from the surrounding cities, towns, and villages who would come to witness and behold the miracles which Jesus would perform—and not only witness the miracles He would perform, but also receive and experience a miracle within their own hearts and lives. When Jesus ordained and appointed the twelve disciples and sent them out as apostles into the earth He was essentially sending them out as sheep among wolves that they might be wise as serpents but harmless as doves. Jesus raised up these twelve apostles as His witnesses, and He sent them out even before He would give what we know and have come to refer to as “The Great Commission.” It is worth thinking about and considering when reading these words how the Lord Jesus Christ would ordain and appoint these twelve apostles as witnesses and ambassadors before Him and before His face—well before HE would actually declare unto them that they would be His witnesses in Jerusalem, in Judaea, in Samaria, and to the uttermost parts of the earth. Well before Jesus would deliver unto them the instruction to teach and baptize men in the name of the Father, in the name of the Son and in the name of the Holy Spirit, Jesus would raise them up and send them forth as ambassadors and witnesses for Him. What’s more, is that this would even before Jesus would breathe upon them as was written in the gospel narratives, and even before the day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit would be manifested in the midst of the city of Jerusalem in the upper room.

            I continue to be utterly and absolutely fascinated with and by the ordaining and appointing of the twelve disciples as apostles and ambassadors for the Lord Jesus Christ, for while it was indeed true that John the Baptist would prepare the way for the Messiah, these twelve apostles would go before His face and would prepare a place and create space for the Messiah to come into the cities, the towns and the villages which were present in Judaea and Galilee. Jesus sent these twelve disciples out as apostles and gave them power and authority for a specific purpose, mission and assignment. Oh we dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this, for it forces us to acknowledge the fact that there would be the initial witness which would be raised up and would call men and women into a place of repentance for the kingdom of heaven was at hand, and yet here there is the second witness that would take place in the midst of the earth that would once more speak unto men and women concerning the manifestation of the kingdom of heaven. It is something worth thinking about and considering when reading the words which are found in this passage of Scripture, for the words which are found here bring us face to face with the fact that these twelve disciples who were ordained and appointed as apostles were raised up to continue to prepare men and women for the Messiah—and not only for the Messiah, but also for the kingdom of heaven. It is interesting that John the Baptist would indeed declare that the kingdom of heaven was at hand, and that Jesus Himself would declare that the kingdom of heaven was at hand, and now we have the disciples and apostles preaching the good tidings of the kingdom of heaven. When Jesus sent the twelve disciples and apostles before Him and sent them out two by two, He was sending them out as ambassadors and apostles for Him in the midst of the earth. These twelve disciples and apostles would be ambassadors and witnesses for the Lord Jesus Christ as they would go into all the cities, towns and villages in Israel proclaiming the good tidings of the kingdom of heaven, and essentially doing the very same thing Jesus Himself had done and had been doing among them.

            What makes this all the more awesome and powerful when you think about it is when you come to the tenth chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the beloved physician Luke you will find the Lord appointing seventy others whom He would send before Him and before His face into every city and place whither He Himself would come. Oh I have to admit there is something truly astonishing and remarkable about the ordaining and appointing of the seventy, for Jesus had already ordained and appointed twelve disciples whom He would send out as apostles and ambassadors for the kingdom of heaven in the midst of Judaea and Galilee. Jesus had already sent out His twelve disciples two by two and had given them power and authority to heal the sick, to cleanse the lepers, to raise the dead, and to cast out unclean spirits. These twelve disciples and apostles were indeed and were in fact raised up and appointed by the Lord Jesus Christ as those who would go before Him as extensions of Himself and as extensions of His ministry within the earth. I absolutely love reading the words which are found within this portion and passage of Scripture, for what we find here within this passage of Scripture is Jesus calling unto Himself another seventy individuals whom He would send out two by two into those cities, towns and villages into which He would come. The question I can’t help but wonder is whether or not Jesus had indeed been within those cities and places which these seventy would be sent into. We know that Jesus would send these seventy out into those cities and places into which He would come, and we know that if there were seventy individuals who were sent out in groups of two then there would be thirty-five groups of disciples who were sent out before the face of Jesus the Christ. I highly doubt that these disciples would be sent unto the same cities and places into which Jesus would come, which might very well suggest that Jesus sent these disciples out into the midst of a minimum of thirty-five cities, towns and villages. Oh think about and consider the fact that there was a minimum of thirty-five cities into which these disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ would indeed and would in fact be manifested before His face as they prepared the way for Him and His coming.

            I have to admit that I absolutely love the words and narrative surrounding these seventy whom Jesus would send out before His face into those cities and places He would enter, for essentially these disciples were given a similar assignment as that which was given unto John the Baptist. John the Baptist was given the assignment of preparing a people before the Messiah and Christ would be revealed and manifested in the midst of the earth, and these individuals were given the tremendous responsibility of going before the face of Jesus into those cities and places into which He would enter—essentially as voices which would prepare the way for Him and for His coming. Oh stop and think about the fact that these individuals were ordained and appointed by the Lord Jesus Christ to prepare the way, to create space, and to make room for the coming of Jesus the Christ unto and among them. These seventy individuals were indeed and were in fact sent into these cities, towns and villages that they might prepare and make room for the person of Jesus the Christ to enter into and enter in among them. Essentially these seventy individuals were raised up, ordained and appointed by the Lord Jesus Christ to enter into these cities, these towns and villages to prepare the way and to make room for the arrival of the Messiah and the Christ. These seventy individuals were given the awesome and incredible task and assignment to go into those cities, towns and villages which Jesus Himself would enter, and they would be given the awesome and powerful assignment of preparing the way for His arrival and His coming. PREPARE THE WAY FOR THE COMING OF THE CHRIST! PREPARING THE WAY FOR THE COMING OF JESUS! ARE YOU READY FOR THE APPERANCE OF JESUS? ARE YOU READY FOR JESUS TO SHOW UP IN YOUR CITY? ARE YOU READY FOR JESUS TO SHOW UP IN YOUR CHURCH? ARE YOU READY FOR JESUS TO SHOW UP IN YOUR TOWN? ARE YOU READY FOR JESUS TO SHOW UP IN YOUR COMMUNITY?

            Perhaps one of the greatest questions I can’t help but ask myself reading these words is how they serve as a powerful question given unto us which we have a great need to answer. I am absolutely and completely convinced that the same mission, the same assignment, and the same task which these seventy disciples were given is still being given in this generation among us within our churches, within our communities, within our homes, within our towns, and within our places of employment. I am absolutely and completely convinced that within our generation we are essentially preparing men and women for Jesus’ coming unto them in the here and now in terms of making Himself known and manifesting Himself unto them, as well as preparing them for the coming of the Lord which would be entirely and altogether different than His first coming. John the Baptist was ordained and appointed by the living and eternal God to prepare the way for the coming of the Messiah in the midst of the earth, and the twelve apostles and these other seventy disciples were also ordained to go before the Lord Jesus Christ to prepare and make room for Him—make room for His arrival and for His coming. With this being said, I am absolutely and completely convinced that there is a great assignment and mission present among us within this generation, as men and women are being called, ordained, raised up, and appointed by the person of Jesus Christ to prepare and make ready for His coming—and not only His coming, but also His return. There is not a doubt in my mind that there is another coming of the Lord Jesus Christ—one that was entirely and altogether different than the first coming of the Messiah. I am absolutely and completely convinced when reading the words found in this passage of Scripture that there are men and women who are being called and raised up as an end times and Last Days witness in the earth to prepare a people for the coming and return of the Lord Jesus Christ. What’s more, is that these men and women are ordained and appointed by the Lord Jesus Christ were given power and authority to carry out the very same mission, ministry and assignment as Jesus Himself. Consider if you will the words which are found in the tenth chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the beloved physician Luke beginning to read with and from the first and opening verse:

            “After these things the Lord appointed other seventy also, and sent them two and two before his face into every city and place, whither he himself would come. Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest. Go your ways: behold, I send you forth as lambs among wolves. Carry neither puse, nor scrip, nor shoes: and salute no man by the way. And into whatsoever house ye enter, first say, Peace be to this house. And if the son of peace be there, your peace shall rest upon it: if not, it shall turn to you again. And in the same house remain, eating and drinking such things as they give: for the labourer is worthy of his hire. Go not from house to house. And into whatsoever city ye enter, and they receive you, eat such things as are set before you: and heal the sick that are therein, and sayu not them, The kingdom of God is come nigh unto you. But into whatsoever city ye enter, and they receive you not, go your ways out into the streets of the same, and say, Even the very dust of your city which cleaveth on us, we do wipe off against you: notwithstanding be ye sure of this, that the kingdom of God is come nigh unto you. But I say unto you, that it shall be more tolerable in that day for Sodom, than for that city. Woe unto thee, Chorazin! Woe unto thee, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works had been done in Tyre and Sidon, which have been done in you, they had a great while ago repented sitting in sackcloth and ashes. But it shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidom at the judgment, than for you. And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted to heaven, shalt be thrust down to hell. He that heareth you heareth me; and he that despiseth you, despiseth me; and he that despiseth me despiseth him that sent me” (Luke 10:1-16).

            As I prepare to bring this writing to a close I find it absolutely necessary to call and draw your attention to that which is found within this portion of Scripture, for what we find here is essentially a third witness which would be raised up in the midst of the earth—one that was designed and intended on preparing the way for the coming and the arrival of the Messiah. What’s more, is that not only were these individuals to prepare those within these cities and places for the coming of the Messiah and the Christ, but they were also to demonstrate and manifest the kingdom of heaven. OH it is truly something worth thinking about and considering when reading these words how Jesus would ordain and appoint seventy disciples who would go before His face into the midst of these cities and places into which He would come—not only to prepare them for His coming and His arrival, but also demonstrating the kingdom of heaven. Oh how truly unique and interesting it is to think about and consider the fact that these individuals were not only sent to demonstrate and manifest the kingdom of heaven in the midst of these cities, towns and villages, but these seventy were ordained and appointed by the Lord Jesus Christ to prepare them for the coming of Jesus Himself. DEMONSTRATE THE KINGDOM WHILE PREPARING MEN FOR THE COMING OF THE MESSIAH! Oh there is something truly astonishing when reading the words found in this particular portion of Scripture, for the words which we find here in this passage of Scripture not only brings us face to face with the demonstration of the kingdom of heaven among them, but also preparing them for the coming and arrival of the Messiah and the Christ. Dear reader, it is absolutely necessary to call and draw your attention to the absolutely awesome and astonishing reality that is found within these passages of Scripture, for what we find here in this passage of Scripture is an incredibly powerful picture of the demonstration of the kingdom of heaven in those places Jesus would come, as well as preparation for the coming and arrival of Jesus into and unto those places.

            I am absolutely and completely convinced that there is before us a two-fold mission and assignment which we must needs recognize and understand within this life. I firmly believe with all my heart that there is before us a divine mission and assignment—one that not only calls us to demonstrate and manifest the kingdom of heaven, but also one that calls on us to prepare men and women for the coming of Jesus. There is not a doubt in my mind that we as the disciples and followers of Jesus have been called and are being called to be those who will demonstrate and manifest the kingdom of heaven in the midst of the earth—and demonstrate the kingdom of heaven through healing the sick, cleansing the lepers, casting out devils and unclean spirits, raising the dead, and preaching the good tidings of the kingdom of heaven. There is a great need within and among us to be those whom the Lord Jesus Christ can indeed and can in fact raise up as those who will bring forth the manifestation and demonstration of the kingdom of heaven, and from that place of manifestation and demonstration we are called to prepare and make ready a people for the coming of the Messiah and for the return of the Christ. OH dear brother, oh dear sister—do you truly understand and recognize that the same Jesus who came initially and originally as the Lamb of God which took away the sins of the world is going to come back as the Lion of the tribe of Judah, and is going to come back to rule and reign as king upon the throne of David? Do you truly understand and recognize that as Jesus came initially and originally as the Lamb of God which would make atonement for sin, He is going to come back a second time to bring judgment and punishment for sin. The first time Jesus came unto the earth was to offer atonement, sacrifice and mercy for sin and that which separates us from the living God, however, He is going to come a second time to judge and to punish sin and sinner.

The question I can’t help but ask you who might be reading these words is whether or not you are indeed and are in fact ready for the coming and the return of the Lord Jesus Christ. Are you as those who are reading these words truly ready for the coming and the return of the Lord Jesus Christ? Moreover, I must needs ask you who are reading these words whether or not you are indeed and are in fact willing to be those ambassadors and witnesses for the Lord Jesus Christ to prepare men and women for His coming, and to make room and create space for Him to move and to come. WE have a great need to recognize and acknowledge within our hearts and lives that the Lord Jesus Christ is indeed coming back, and that He is in fact going to return. What’s more, is that not only are we ourselves to be ready for His coming and His appearing, but we are also called to be those who will go into the cities, into the towns, into the villages, into the communities, into the neighborhoods, and into those places into which the living and eternal Christ will come and will return. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this and how absolutely incredible it truly is, for it calls and draws our attention into whether or not we are willing to be those ambassadors and witnesses for the Lord Jesus Christ in this generation—those who will not only demonstrate the kingdom of heaven with power and with authority, but also those who are willing to prepare men and women for the coming and the return of the Lord Jesus Christ. There is a great need within our hearts and lives to not only be ready, but also to make others ready and prepare them for the coming of the Messiah and for the return of the Christ. Oh that we would truly recognize and understand the great mission and assignment we have been given in this generation to make ready men and women for the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ and that we would be those who would create a space and make room for Him within the hearts and lives of those to whom we have been sent as His ambassadors and witnesses.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s