Day 27

Choosing the 12

When we left Jesus yesterday, he had just announced the appointment of twelve leaders. I don't think everyone was happy with the final decision. What about the women disciples? Yes, many women were not just Christ followers but also disciples. In Luke 8:1-3 we have a list of several of these women. As Jesus looked into the faces of those not chosen and chosen, I am sure he saw many different expressions. Maybe everyone expected Peter, but how about Matthew, the tax collector? Indeed some people had a hard time with this selection. After all, Matthew was a traitor to his people and hated – how could Jesus choose him? And how about the fact that eleven of the twelve were from the region of Galilee? What about diversity and inclusion?!? Can you imagine the outrage that would happen today? As Jesus looks out over this large crowd of disciples, he shares the following:

Read Luke 6:20-26

As Jesus Preaches this "ordination sermon," what is the object of his focus? (Luke 6:20)?

What is Jesus modeling for us about leadership?

What was Jesus saying that leaders should expect from the ministry?

Jesus turns his gaze toward the large crowd of disciples, who are out, likely sitting on the ground, as He announces the Leadership team. He then gives an incredible teaching on the expectations. Why expectations? One thing that puts us in the most trouble is our false expectations. We enter into a relationship or a new job with certain expectations. Still, soon we realize that the other person or boss has different expectations, and we get discouraged because we don't know what to expect. Jesus foresees this problem with leadership and addresses it from the beginning.

A fundamental principle in leadership is to state clearly your expectations. So let me help you unwrap the eight expectations of a leader that Jesus lays out for his team.

#1. Expect to experience poverty in the ministry when you do not have a dime to your name. And when these times happen, remember that you are blessed (Luke 6:20). Poverty is a gift from the Father to keep you God-dependent– accept it, embrace it.

#2. Expect to experience riches in the ministry when God opens the floodgates and pours out so much on you that you will think you deserve what he is giving you. Be careful in these times of wealth, so you do not forget who is blessing you (Luke 6:24)

#3. Expect to experience hunger in the ministry when you have nothing to eat and your stomach will be growling. When that happens, remember you are blessed (Luke 6:21). Hunger is a gift from God to cause you to remember that it is not by bread alone that a leader lives but by every word that proceeds out of His mouth (Matt. 4:4).

#4. Expect to experience being full in the ministry, having times when you will eat like a king, and at times with kings and rulers. But be careful that when those times come that you do not forget the Bread of Life that satisfies your hunger forever (Luke 6:25)

#5. Expect to experience pain in the ministry when you weep deeply. When that happens, remember that you are blessed (Luke 6:21). Pain is a gift from God to cause you to remember that we do not weep as those of this world– without hope– because we have an anchor for the soul in Jesus (Heb. 6:9).

#6. Expect to experience laughter in the ministry when you laugh until your stomach hurts at the funny things that will happen as you make disciples. But be careful when those times come that you don't forget to share in the pain of others and bear each other's burdens (Luke 6:25)

#7. Expect to be hated, ostracized, insulted, and scorned in the ministry for the name of Christ. You will experience persecution for the name of Jesus, and when that happens, rejoice because you are blessed (Luke 6:22-23). Persecution is a gift from God and a promise for all who will live like Jesus (2 Timothy 3:12).

#8. Expect to experience being spoken well of in the ministry, when people will praise you for what God has done in and through you. But be careful when those times come that you don't receive the glory (Luke 6:26) because God shares His glory with no man (Isa. 48:11)

Those true disciples of Jesus are promised tough times on this earth. Why? The answer is simple– hard times of poverty, hunger, tears, and persecution come because they are what the Fahter uses to mold us and shape us into the image of His son, Jesus. The Father's job in your life is to make you like Jesus (Rom.8:29). My job and yours is to submit to the Father and allow Him to transform us.

What expectation do you run from?

What expectation surprises you?

What expectation have you felt that isn't mentioned?


Nellie Parker - February 7th, 2023 at 5:33am

I can’t compare my self to the people at that time as life was different and the physical Jesus was there right before their eyes and they still had trust issues but I try to see Jesus in the people he uses I now am able to expect miracles as I see them happening I have a brother who had distanced himself from me for years he had a wife who had fallen very I’ll thru another brother I was told of her sickness so I prayed I received a call and he invited me to her memorial it is this morning please pray that I can be a witness and not a doubting Thomas that the lord will mend our relationship that I have prayed over many times but wasn’t feeling that things would ever change again Thankyou Jon for this study

Amanda Welch - February 7th, 2023 at 8:01am

What a great reminder of all the expectations of being a Christian. Over the years I have experienced most of those. The main thing is that I will never lose hope or faith- he always provides, he always comforts and he is the giver of peace in times it makes no sense.

I know this world is not my home. It is more difficult to remember that in times of need and heartbreak, but God is still good! I cannot thank Him enough for the salvation I have through Jesus! I don’t deserve it, but He continues to give me grace each day.

Larry - February 7th, 2023 at 9:23am

Jon i shared with you last nite some of the worst times in my life I dont want to re-live But I kinda long for at times because of how close The Lord was and how he carried us thru, sometimes I wonder how we even endured, looking back it is very plain He carried us!

Mark Hudson - February 7th, 2023 at 6:31pm

I have read today's scripture many times over my life and heard it from the pulpit. The way it was explained today made more sense than at any other time. It is pretty simple: There are going to be good times and bad times in our life here on this earth but one thing remains consistent through it all - God.