I’ve sometimes wondered how many of the 72 disciples were women. They went out two-by-two and that would make sense if women were also sent because a woman traveling alone would not be safe. We’ll never know although in later years a roster of disciples’ names was assembled, but I suspect we can take that 72 with a grain of salt.
Going out as lambs among wolves doesn’t make much of a pep talk for those about to travel to many towns to “spread the word.” One would think the wolves would quickly dispatch the disciples. Not much of a contest with teeth being sunk into wool and then flesh.
Chances are the word was spread and imaginations captured within synagogues where the disciples made their case before other Jews. However, Luke is the author of this Gospel passage so it’s safe to assume by his time and where he lived Jesus’ message was embraced by non-Jews and pagans for whom his teachings were attractive and offered hope.
Today we know Jesus has vast multitudes of disciples, including all of us at Christ the King. We are called to be Jesus’ laborers. Do we have the courage to deal with the wolves? They are already at our doors. Perhaps it’s best to think of ourselves as lions. Let the wolves hear us roar.
Deacon David Pierce