In Luke chapter 10, Jesus sends out 72 disciples to preach and heal and spread the good news of the kingdom of God. When they return, they say this:
17 The seventy-two returned with joy, saying, “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in your name!”
These disciples were on fire. They had an amazing mountain top experience and are excited to tell Jesus all about it. But Jesus, rather than congratulating them, gives them a gentle word correction. He says:
18 And he said to them, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. 19 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. 20 Nevertheless, do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”
Now, regardless of what it means to “tread on serpents and scorpions”, one thing here is certain: Jesus wants His disciples to rejoice. But, He wants them to rejoice in the right things. It’s all well and good that demons are subject to them, but there is something greater: their salvation!
Is this how you think about your salvation? Do you consider the fact that Christ has saved you and brought you into God’s family a greater and more praise worthy event then casting out demons?
Often times, I don’t think we do. Christ wants us to be so satisfied in our salvation that nothing else seems worthy of rejoicing. And it’s true, there is nothing greater than to know that the God of the universe calls us by name because we are His children.
Jesus sees this reality as a great and glorious miracle. Let us rejoice in the salvation He brings finds our names written in the book of life.