This is a commissioning of seventy-two disciples - many more than the twelve we imagine following Jesus. Apparently, the twelve were distinguished among many.
This passage really brings home the value of hospitality among those Hebrews who claim Abraham as their father. We saw in yesterday's reading how this was tied to Abraham and it wraps up here. The dusting off of the feet was done by Jews traveling abroad. They would dust off their feet before entering the Holy Land once again. Jesus has his disciples do this because it is stating that an inhospitable town is not really a part of the Promised Land or the Kingdom of God. The reference to Sodom shows that those who should know better and don't follow through are at a disadvantage for judgment.
Note that healing and blessing and peace reside upon those who follow through with welcoming the disciples. When we refuse our neighbor, we miss out on God's blessing.
Reflect upon your life and see where this is true.
|Satan falling like lightning is a symbol|
of the victory of the disciples and
the reign of God. Note that the disciples are emulating
the duties of the Messiah, providing healing, blessing and peace.