Read Luke 10:17-24
When the seventy-two disciples returned, they joyfully reported to him, “Lord, even the demons obey us when we use your name!” (Luke 10:17 NLT)
My favorite movie of the 80s is the original “Back to the Future.” In my mind, it encapsulates all of the best things that 80s movies had to offer. It had it all: A goofy, yet charming hero, a one-dimensional villain who we love to hate, bad clothes and hairstyles, campy humor, and Huey Lewis on the soundtrack! What could be better? At the end of the movie, one of the definitive scenes comes when Doc Brown (The crazy scientist who has befriended the high school hero and made a time machine out of a DeLorean… the 1950s version of Doc Brown…I’m telling you, this movie has it all!) sends our hero (Marty McFly) back to the future after a week of being stuck in the 50s. The time machine launches into the future and Doc Brown is left jumping up and down in the street shouting, “It worked! It worked!” It was a mixture of celebration and amazement and a new found confidence… because not much Doc Brown had ever done to that point had really worked or been of much value.
In my head, verse 17 looks a lot like that scene from Back to the Future. The 72 people Jesus sent out (the ones he told to proclaim the Kingdom, to call people to repentance, to heal the sick and cast out demons… that 72) have just returned from their first mission, and they are joyful and amazed at what happened. It worked! Jesus sent them out to do that which likely seemed impossible. But it worked! People were healed, people turned to God and even the demons obeyed when they used Jesus’ name. It worked. Jesus told them that it would work and it did!
In the movie, the course of Doc Brown’s life changed because of the confidence he gained because something he invented actually worked. I imagine the course of life for these 72 was forever altered because they experienced first hand Jesus work both in and through their lives. I imagine they no longer had to cling to hope that Jesus might be worth following… that he might be the one. They traded their hope for faith… and faith is, “the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.” — Hebrews 11:1 NLT
Today I pray that each of us would gain confidence in the call that Jesus has placed on our lives. I pray that we would see evidence of Jesus’ power and authority at work in and through us. I pray that as we live in and interact with this world today that the light of Christ would shine brightly through us. I pray that at the end of the day we might see the fruit that is being born through God’s work in our lives so we might proclaim with great faith, “It works!”