The Gospel According to St Luke: Luke Chapter Ten: Read here:
Mary Heard His Word, by Walter Rane
Jesus Sent Seventies Forth to Labor: Luke 10:1-17:
The office of Seventy was present in Christ’s original church. The Seventy sent out in this chapter was not the first quorum.
‘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’ (vs. 1).
These missionary Seventies were sent forth two by two.
Jesus told them that He sent them forth as lambs among wolves. Teaching the gospel is not without danger. Even the Lamb of God was slain for the world. Yet He gives us this promise when we are in His service:
“And whoso receiveth you, there I will be also, for I will go before your face. I will be on your right hand and on your left, and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angels round about you, to bear you up” (Doctrine and Covenants 84:88).
‘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 purse, 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 say unto 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”’ (vs. 2-11).
Jesus ordained and set apart His Apostles to serve missions; He also did so with the Seventies. It is the same today. He wants the peoples of the earth to hear His gospel and to have a chance to receive it, accept it, have faith on Him and be baptized in His name, and then receive the Gift of the Holy Ghost.
Rejecting His gospel will bring serious consequences for cities and for individuals. The Lord says that if we reject His servants, we are also rejecting Him, and “that it shall be more tolerable in that day for Sodom, than for that city,” of for those who reject Him. In the next verses, He names more cities. These cities, which the Jews considered to be evil above all, would have repented, had the Lord shown them the mighty works that He showed to the Jews of His day.
What does this mean for us now? We have the greatest privileges of any people to ever live on the earth, and we have been blessed with the restored gospel, with the Gift of the Holy Ghost and attending gifts of the Spirit, and Priesthood power. Will we repent and accept Him?
Woes Pronounced Against Those Who Reject the Gospel: Luke 10:13-15:
“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 Sidon at the judgment, than for you.
“And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted to heaven, shalt be thrust down to hell.
‘And he said unto his disciples,
“He that heareth you heareth me; and he that despiseth you despiseth me; and he that despiseth me despiseth him that sent me” (JST in italics).
The Seventy Return from Missionary Assignment: Luke 10:17-20:
‘And the seventy returned again with joy, saying,
“Lord, even the devils are subject unto us through thy name.”
‘And he said unto them,
“I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven.
“Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you. Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven.”’
Our service must be done in humility. It is the Lord’s power working in and through us that allows us to spread His gospel and do His works.
Why does He ask us not to rejoice that evil spirits are subject to those with Priesthood power? First of all, the glory belongs to God. Second, if we are boastful and challenge the evil that we oppose, we may be in danger of being overcome by it.
Always Return Thanks unto God: Luke 10: 21-24:
‘In that hour Jesus rejoiced in spirit, and said,
“I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hid these things from them who think they are wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes: even so, Father; for so it seemed good in thy sight (JST in italics).
“All things are delivered to me of my Father: and no man knoweth who the Son is, but the Father; and who the Father is, but the Son, and he to whom the Son will reveal him [that the Son is the Father, and the Father is the Son, but him to whom the Son will reveal it] (JST in italics).
‘And he turned him unto his disciples, and said privately,
“Blessed are the eyes which see the things that ye see: For I tell you, that many prophets and kings have desired to see those things which ye see, and have not seen them; and to hear those things which ye hear, and have not heard them.
Jesus shared in the joy of the Seventy’s safe return and in their success. He also found joy in their submission to Him and their willingness to share His gospel with others. Those whom He called were not the gospel scholars the learned men of law; the Pharisees and the Lawyers had rejected Him. So it is that the poor, the humble, and the teachable find communion with Him and are privileged with the faith to see His works and know who He is.
The Good Samaritan: Luke 10:25-37:
‘And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying,
“Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?”
‘He said unto him,
“What is written in the law? how readest thou?”
‘And he answering said,
“Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.”
‘And he said unto him,
“Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live.”
‘But he, willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus,
“And who is my neighbour?”
‘And Jesus answering said,
“A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead.
“And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side.
“But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him.
“And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee.
“Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves?”
‘And he said,
“He that shewed mercy on him.”
‘Then said Jesus unto him,
“Go, and do thou likewise.”’
Are we like this lawyer who asked the question of Jesus? Do we seek to justify ourselves when we know that we fall short in our service to our fellowmen? Do we offer excuses? Do we know those who actually live next door to us?
Do we feel compassion on those who are needy and require assistance? Do we sometimes rather feel contempt? Are we learning to serve all those who are within our reach and our capacity without reservation and without seeking recompense and restitution?
When we ask the question, “And who is my neighbor?” are we seeking for assistance in finding those whom we can help, or are we seeking deliverance from our responsibility to be neighborly in the first place?
The Samaritans were despised of the Jews, because they were Jews who had married outside the covenant, or those who had mixed with neighboring nations. Yet it was a Samaritan who stopped to help the Jew who was left for dead.
Do we feel compassion? Compassion is so needed in today’s world. Do we have eyes to see and hearts to heal and resolve to “Go and do thou likewise?”
Choose the Good Part: Luke 10:38-42:
‘Now it came to pass, as they went, that he entered into a certain village: and a certain woman named Martha received him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus’ feet, and heard his word. But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said,
“Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me.”
‘And Jesus answered and said unto her,
“Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosenthat good part, which shall not be taken away from her.”’
I have contemplated this passage many times. Certainly, the Lord doesn’t think that one should be left to do the work, while another just sits at leisure. This I know. Because one of the first commandments ever given was that we must work.
Martha wanted everything to be perfect for her guest; Mary wanted to sit at her guest’s feet and hear Him speak. Doesn’t this in itself tell us something?
Are we ever overly concerned like Martha about the presentation of ourselves, our home, our education, our food, trying to give the best we can offer our company? Since we have all been guests as well, wouldn’t you say that Mary’s choice is more comforting and sustaining to the traveler or the guest?
Mary sat at the Lord’s feet to hear Him speak. She was interested in Him and wanted to spend as much time with Him as possible. To the one preparing the meal this may seem selfish. To the one weary from traveling and in need of company, this may have been food for His soul. They will forget the meal that they ate, but they will not forget how you made them feel.
What is the good part? We all need to look inside ourselves and to the Lord to understand and answer that for ourselves, because the good part, that we can do now, will always be seeking to do the Lord’s will and doing our bests to succor His sheep, not just physically, but spiritually, and emotionally.
There is a time for preparation, and when the Lord is come that time will be past. So it should be when we have company. Prepare in advance and when your company is in your presence, give them your undivided attention.