By: Andrew S. Macad
We live in a world today where everybody is looking for somebody. A degree holder, or a licensed man, or skilled man is looking for job. An employer, or company, business is also looking for workers. According to DOLE there are about 2.3 Million Filipinos looking for jobs in 2018. The situation is, there is no work here that is why Filipinos seek work abroad.
In the spiritual realm, the scenario is reversed, there is a great work but there are no workers. Shortage of Workers. Scarcity of Workers. The owner of a “Harvest Company”, who is Jesus, says: the harvest is plentiful but the laborers are few. Majority of Christians in our churches today are just Speculators, “Pew Sitters” or Watchers, or Waiters, but are not Workers that is why Jesus Christ was saying here “but the Laborers are Few” and He is recruiting for more workers.
Jesus Christ is toward the end of his public ministry having only six months left before his death in Jerusalem. In chapter 9 He sent the 12 disciples for the work of proclamation around areas in Galilee, and now there are still many areas he needs to go particularly in cities and villages around Jordan River, so here in chapter 10, He sent another batch of 72 disciples to go ahead of him in those places. Jesus is fully aware that His time on earth is getting shorter and shorter, and the task is still great, now He sends greater number of disciples to work with and for Him.
Believers, have you ever thought how vast people are in villages and cities of our country and in the world today who have not heard about Jesus even once? Did you realize that according to the most recent United Nations estimate, the world population is 7.7 billion as of June 2019? Operation World estimates the number of Evangelical Christians at 550 million. Meaning, Evangelical Christians are only 14 percent in the world today and 86 percent of the people in the world have still to be evangelized. Has that great need came across and sank deep into your heart --- the greatness and the urgency and the great demand for more workers?
This passage will make us realize that our Lord is looking urgently for MORE Workers into His Harvest. The dominating thought on this section is about the Vastness of the Harvest and the Scarcity of Laborers, and our Lord is sending with urgency more Workers into His Harvest.
And, that leads us to ask ourselves: How can we have More Workers in the Lord’s Harvest?
Sending More Workers into the Harvest Intentionally -
Luke 10:1 “After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them on ahead of him, two by two, into every town and place where he himself was about to go.
While the sending out of the 12 disciples earlier in Luke chapter 9, represents the ministry to God’s people – the twelve tribes of Israel, the ministry of the 72 was to the Gentiles – as accordingly, there were traditionally 72 Gentile nations. Luke being a Gentile, and was writing to a Gentile audience was the only one who wrote about this account. This was not mentioned in other Gospel narrative.
The word “Appointed” here in this verse means, the Lord made a selection and assigned them to a task. They were chosen and commissioned by the Lord. And the word “Sent” in this verse means that the Lord gave these 72 other disciples whom He has chosen an order to depart and go to a certain place he appointed with an implicative idea of urgency and haste.
One thing clearly we see on this passage is Jesus sending out such a large delegation of disciples, so that they could reach as many people as possible in the short time that was left. Seeing the vastness of Harvest and considering the Scarcity of Laborers, Jesus was Intentional and Initiative of Choosing and Sending More Workers into the harvest.
We need to see to it that our Churches are Sending out Workers Intentionally. We need to see to it that Christians are Senders by giving Support so that Workers are Sent into the harvest Intentionally.
Thw important thing to see in a church is not how many it seats but how many it sends.
As a church are we a Sending church? As a Christian are we a Sending Christian? We should be Sending More Workers into the Lord’s Harvest Intentionally.
Praying for More Workers into the Harvest Earnestly — Luke 10:2 “And he said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.”
What is the BIG Problem and Concern in the story? It is found here in verse 2 when JesusC said the “Harvest is truly plentiful… But the laborers are few”
Kirk Devine: The word,” harvest”, comes from the Greek word, therismos (ther-is-mos’), which means (in verb form) ‘to reap…’ To gather… Collect… Bring in. (In the noun form) it refers to ‘the crop…’ The produce… The product… The yield…The people… The sheep… The lost, hurting, unloved…
“Harvest” – are people who are ready to be collected and be brought to Salvation through Jesus Christ. It means people are ready to be brought to the Lord but the Big Problem is, there are only few who are harvesting. Only Few! That’s the great need! In other words, there is much work to be done… But there aren’t enough workers to do it. Harvest Worker is Wanted! And the Lord Jesus Christ prescribed to us that we Pray Earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest. Worker who will Reach others and Share the Good news of Salvation in Christ to them. Worker who participates in the work of Evangelism. Workers who will involve in Mission of propagating the message that Jesus died for our sins, that he was buried and rose again after three days. We must be praying earnestly that God will send out Laborers into the harvest.
Ultimately it is the Lord who calls and sends Laborers into the harvest and it is imperative on us to pray earnestly to Him for more Harvest Workers. It is God Himself who can lay the burden into the heart of those whom He appoints and sends.
This a matter of obedience.
Many of our churches and Christians had been praying, but look at what we are praying. We are praying for so many things but for workers I wonder if we have even remembered to pray about it.
Going Ourselves as Workers into the Harvest Urgently —Luke 10:3 – 20
Mandate of the Task - Luke 10:3 “Go your way; behold, I am sending you out as lambs in the midst of wolves. ”
To “GO” is to Depart from where you are.
He sends us out into the Harvest.
This is a command and not an option.
Difficulty of the Task - Luke 10:3 “Go your way; behold, I am sending you out as lambs in the midst of wolves. ”
It means going and doing the task will have oppositions, obstacles, and dangers. It is going to be dangerous and difficult.
Urgency of the Task:
Luke 10:4 “Carry no moneybag, no knapsack, no sandals, and greet no one on the road ”
They are not to take any unnecessary baggage with them, nor waste any time, because the work is too urgent for any delay.
God will provide for their needs as they trust in His leading.
They must also not waste their time on the road with long-winded greetings that were part of the customs of the day.
Assurances with the Task:
Provision: Luke 10:7,8 - And remain in the same house, eating and drinking what they provide, for the laborer deserves his wages. Do not go from house to house. Whenever you enter a town and they receive you, eat what is set before you.
Partnership: Luke 10:16 – “The one who hears you hears me, and the one who rejects you rejects me, and the one who rejects me rejects him who sent me.”
Power: Luke 10:16- Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you.
Protection:Luke 10:16- Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you.
Result of the Task – Joy of Salvation
Luke 10:17,20 - The seventy-two returned with joy, saying, “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in your name!” Nevertheless, do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.
David Brainerd, Missionary to the American Indians : "I cared not where or how I lived, or what hardships I went through, so that I could but gain souls to Christ. While I was asleep, I dreamed of these things, and when I awoke the first thing I thought of was this great work. “
Jesus tells a parable of a man that needed workers for his harvest (Matt 20). The question is not, “Why don’t you have a job? Because There is a Job for You to Do! The question is, “Why are you still standing there?”
Jesus said, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few! …the workers are few! …….There are plenty of opportunities but not enough workers.
3 Kinds of Christians within the Church:
(1) Those who just Watch,
(2) Those who just Wait, and
(3) Those who really Work.
Brethren, God showed us the Vastness of People who needs the Lord, and Time is Getting Short, the Judgment is Coming, and Jesus is the Only Way to be Saved, the Laborers are Few.
You and I must realize that Christians must be part to have more workers into the harvest. And we can do this by: