Luke 9:1-6 Sharing Their Testimony.
Sometimes passing comments, even scriptural ones, can escape us, such as Luke stating that Jesus “called His twelve disciples.” He didn’t write that some followers came together. They were called by Jesus, they were his, it was only the twelve, and they were more than followers, they were disciples. There is enough here for a decent three point sermon, or maybe four. Jesus has had many followers over the years, including when He walked this earth, but not all were disciples, ie., people under the disciplined tutelage of the Lord. It is also certain that there were only twelve who found a unique place in that unique company. None of this means that this passage has nothing to say of relevance to us, quite the contrary, but it does colour the context. It was to these twelve whom He uniquely called, that He gave “power and authority over all demons, and to cure diseases.” Why did He do this? For one chief purpose, to authenticate the kingdom message for, “He sent them to preach the kingdom of God and to heal the sick.” (v. 2)
Furthermore, it was to these men that He spoke (v. 3). They were to make no other preparations. However, He did say that whoever did not receive them they were to shake the dust off their feet. Now it could be that not receiving them meant that they simply did not want to listen, or even more violent than this. However, it could also mean those who refused to provide them the necessities of life, because these were the very things Jesus was telling them not to worry about (vv. 4-5 Cf. Mt. 10:11-15). “So they departed and went through the towns, preaching the gospel and healing everywhere.” (v. 6) One can imagine that any who were healed would want to receive these men, but perhaps some would not. It may be easier to imagine them not being received for simply preaching the gospel, but for any who received their message, receiving their person’s would be proof of genuineness. Was Jesus setting up a proof of the genuineness of the faith of some and the lack of faith of others? This would certainly be one result (Cf. Lk. 8:1-3).