Jesus gave them power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease.
This past weekend was one of the most incredible I’ve experienced during my Christian walk. Following the horrific tragedies of the police and race related violence, I know many were searching for answers and hope. We gathered as a church Saturday and Sunday to seek the Lord, and He showed up! I remember walking out this past Sunday feeling so encouraged. I had hope. I had the expectancy that God really could take an ugly situation and release spiritual renewal that could touch our city and even the nation.
Walking out of the service I saw many others carrying the same hope and joy that I’d received. Within minutes, however, I walked into a restaurant and quickly realized that most around me did not share in the same peace that I did. Holy Spirit challenged me in that moment. I believe God is saying, “I have allowed you to receive a blessing, but with that blessing you have also received a mandate to release it to others!”
I have experienced several instances where God touched me powerfully and I think, “If an unbeliever or an atheist felt what I feel now, they would be saved!” I’m all about seeing God touch people, encourage, heal, release hope, etc. but we need to begin to release what we have received!
When Jesus touched His disciples and gave them authority, they didn’t have testimony time or put together a highlight reel of the service. Verse 5 continues the narrative: “These twelve Jesus sent out… saying ‘Go to the lost sheep… preach, heal, cast out devils. Freely you have received, freely give.’” (paraphrase)
We must remember that we are sent out as well! When God touches our lives, we become obligated to freely give what we have received.
Moses had a powerful encounter with God at a burning bush. He didn’t build a shrine there, but He went to release what God had spoken to him. The result was the liberation of an enslaved people!
God spoke an incredible word to John the Baptist while he was in the wilderness. John didn’t brag about it to the religious in the church. Instead, he saw the lost and broken drawn to him as he released that word to a people that desperately needed it!
Jesus, Himself, received power after a season of fasting, prayer, and temptation. He immediately began to release the anointing to the people He had come to rescue.
Not everyone in the Bible got it right either. Peter, James, and John had an amazing encounter when Jesus was transfigured before them. You know what they wanted to do? Luke 9 says they wanted to build shrines as a memorial. That wasn’t God’s intention. Little did they know the other disciples were struggling with a demon possessed boy and a desperate father. Not much is different today. We love to have our spiritual experiences and build monuments around those encounters. We often fail to recognize that someone right around the corner is desperate to receive what God just deposited in us.
If God has touched you, healed you, saved you, empowered you, delivered you, or blessed you, be sure that you are active in releasing what you have freely received!