Luke 10:1-11; 16-20
To be sent out with no purse or provisions as lambs into the midst of wolves doesn’t sound so promising unless the success of the mission does not depend on the missionary. In fact, the kingdom of God comes near the house that welcomes peace and the house with the “No Soliciting” sign. Where the kingdom is recognized healing happens. Where it is not recognized the kingdom stands as sentence against the shortsighted as they are left to their own devices which is always less than what the kingdom offers. The dust shaking judgment anticipates the woes in the verses the lectionary leaves out. It is a litany of losers, where even sin city Sodom is better off “in that day” than the cities who choose not to welcome peace. But even those who proclaim peace don’t quite recognize the kingdom come near for they rejoice not in the name of Jesus but in the power they wield with his name. Jesus redirects their joy from submitting spirits to their names written in the final kingdom come. And if the one despised and rejected, the Lamb who led to the slaughter and before his shearers was dumb is the one who writes the names recorded in heaven maybe there is hope even for the litany of losers?