And He called the twelve together, and gave them power and authority over all the demons and to heal diseases. And He sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to perform healing. (Luke 9:1-2 NASB)
When Jesus sent the disciples out, He gave them two main tasks. They were to proclaim the kingdom of God and to perform healing. What did Jesus do before He gave them the two-fold job? He equipped them with power and authority.
First, Jesus equipped the twelve with power and authority over all the demons, and then He gave them the task of proclaiming the truth of the kingdom of God. Even before Jesus assigned them their job, He gave them all they needed to perform it. This becomes important when we are called by God to a task that seems insurmountable. We can rest with confidence in the fact that our Lord will always equip us to do that to which He has called us.
He also gave them the power to heal disease and then He gave them the job of healing diseases.
Selah. Pause and consider.
This is an important principle, and one we would do well to consider in our own lives. Jesus did not give the power and authority to combat demons and heal diseases lightly, nor without purpose. He gave the power with the intention that the twelve would use that power to accomplish the purpose for which it was given.
We need to understand that the gifts of God are not given lightly, though we sometimes have a tendency to be extravagant with His generosity. One day, we will give an accounting of our stewardship over the gifts He has so freely bestowed. Will we be able to show how we have used those gifts to further the kingdom of God? Oh dear ones, may we take our eyes off the world and fix them on our Savior, making Him the reason for all we do.
What power and authority has God placed in your hand? For what reason was that power and authority given? Are you fulfilling His purpose in your life?
Today pray that we would be willing vessels of the gifts God has given us, allowing Him to use those gifts to work through us to change the world.