“The seventy returned with joy, saying, ‘Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your name.’” (Luke 10:17)

Jesus sent out seventy of His followers in pairs ahead of Him to every city and place where He was going to come. They were to lodge as guests in people’s homes, speak of the kingdom of God, and heal the sick. These came back in exclamation of a shared wonder:

They had power in Jesus’ name.

 Even over demons!

* * *

One doesn’t have to read between the lines of Luke 10:17 to recognize these lovers of Christ were thrilled and even surprised over the supernatural experiences they had.

There is such a thing as a God Partya pure and holy celebration of His goodnessand one was warming up!

* * *

Jesus wasn’t about to stop His disciples from having a joyful festival of praise. What He did do, however, was transcend it—power it up, so to speak—to His recurring theme of the kingdom of God.

 And He said to them, ‘I was watching Satan fall from heaven like lightning…’

Jesus let His disciples know that, as the eternal Son of God, He expelled Satan from heaven with lightening-swift power and that nothing happens in the spiritual realm He does not see or have control over. The works of the seventy, while apart from Jesus’ physical presence, were subsequently conducted with His knowledge and empowerment (Luke 10:18-19).

Having established that, we next see Jesus—Himself filled with joy—redirecting their focus:

Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are recorded in heaven. (Luke 10:20)

* * *

Yes, let’s have a celebration!

Not over supernatural experiences, but over the miracle of where your names are recorded!

 * * *

If we ever “God Party”, what is it over?

His healing of cancer? Yes, as well we should!

The provision of that financial relief we’ve prayed for? Absolutely!

The restoration of a marriage we asked God to bring about? Yes, yes, yes!

But… what about our names being recorded in heaven?

* * *

Jesus didn’t simply tell His “high on spiritual experiences” disciples what they should really be rejoicing over, but Himself became so gratefully overcome by the miracle of their names residing in heaven’s records that, then and there, He went into big time God Partying!

At that, Jesus rejoiced, exuberant in the Holy Spirit. ‘I thank you, Father, Master of heaven and earth, that You hid these things from the know-it-alls and showed them to these innocent newcomers. Yes, Father, it pleased You to do it this way.’ (Luke 10:21, The Message).

No matter which version of the Bible we’re reading, the phrasing in Luke 10:21 and original Greek composition eliminates any possibility of Jesus quietly bowing His head and softly uttering His gratefulness to the Father over this. He rejoiced! Exuberantly!

He may have thrown back His head, laughing and shouting in joy. Or He may have clapped or raised His hands in delight before His prayer of gratitude poured out. We don’t know… yet what excellent things to ponder!

Unlike many theatrics found in pulpits today, Jesus wasn’t putting on a show. A public, joyful eruption of praise from God the Son was showered upon God the Father through the power of God the Holy Spirit.

This exuberance depicts the Triune God’s immense joy over every believer in Christ whose name is recorded in heaven!

 * * *

Are you beginning to see how Jesus prioritized something we often don’t?

Not everyone’s name will be found written in the book of life (referenced in Revelation 20:15 and elsewhere). By and large, society—which includes a growing number of churches—has embraced untruths that there are multiple ways to God, He owes us a place in heaven, or there is really no such thing as hell (a place of eternal punishment for sin and separation from God). Yet Scripture is clear that, after physical death, every person will stand before his or her Creator. Books will be opened. And one thing will matter…

Whether their name is found written in the book of life.

(see Revelation 20:11-15)

Revelation 20:15: And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

Exodus 32:31-33: Then Moses returned to the LORD, and said, ‘Alas, this people has committed a great sin, and they have made a god of gold for themselves. But now, if You will, forgive their sinand if not, please blot me out from Your book which You have written!’ The LORD said to Moses, ‘Whoever has sinned against Me, I will blot him out of My book.’

Revelation 3:5: He who overcomes will thus be clothed in white garments; and I will not erase his name from the book of life, and I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels.

* * *

If your name will be found written in the book of life, rejoice; exuberantly!

It won’t be there because you’ve earned your way into God’s kingdom. Ephesians 2:8-9 reminds us, For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.

 Oh, Christ follower, are you rejoicing over God’s marvelous gift of faith to you?!

What would it look like if we began having regular God Parties with other believers because our names are recorded in heaven? What if we seized opportunities to share with those who don’t know and love Jesus about His glorious invitation to be a part of God’s everlasting kingdom?

* * *

WHAT CANNOT GO ‘UNSAID’

 If you haven’t acted on God’s gift of faith in Jesus Christ, you can.

Jesus said, Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears My word and believes Him who sent Me has eternal life. He does not come into judgement, but has passed from death to life. (John 5:24)

Jesus used two marvelous words when calling His disciples:

 “Follow Me…”

This is our Creator’s intimate invitation. Not to have knowledge about Him, but to know Him. To live and walk with Him in oneness and pass from spiritual death to spiritual life.

Jesus said, My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. (John 10:27-28)

* * *

This Jesus—who rejoiced exuberantly over His followers’ names being recorded in the book of life—invites you to know and follow Him.

And all of heaven will celebrate, if you do!

I tell you that in the same way, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.

(Luke 15:7)

* * *

Glorious!

And that’s just the beginning…

June

June

People Lover. Author. Blogger. Speaker. Forgiven Much & Wild About God. Learn about June's latest book on her website.

4 Comments

  • Becky says:

    Wow! Thank you June! I was amazed at the Exodus 32: 31-33 passage as it hit me anew. What Moses was willing to sacrifice for his people, I never really saw before. He was willing to give up his name in the book of life for his people! He was indeed a type of Christ! Our pastor is teaching on the Scarlet Cord where woven throughout the entire Bible is God’s love through the blood of the Lamb on the cross. A light bulb just popped on when you shared this passage today. Thank you!

  • Brad says:

    YES!!!! 🎉🎈🎊

  • Beryl says:

    Amen! Father, help me seize more of the opportunities that you give me daily to share Your gift of faith You have given me!

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