He called the Twelve to him, and began to send them out as his messengers, two and two, and gave them authority over foul spirits.
check your assumptions
against those of others
add your weight
support and challenge another
“Extending A Healthy Way”
teamed and yoked by lot
learn to work middle out
dance together sing
released joy is authoritative
Jesus’ standard ask is for people to join in his having been joined with a creative force of new space as in the landing of Noah’s Ark or next potential Eden. “Come, fly with the Dove of Belovedness!”
Some were specifically invited to learn how to “fish for people” (maybe it should have been a pelican that descended?). They have experienced some of their own doubt and mistrust in the midst of many opportunities to appropriate what they saw Jesus doing. Now the call to “join” is going to become clearer as they are sent out δύο δύο (duo duo, two [by] two).
It will be easy to read words like ἀποστέλλειν (apostellein, commissioning/sending off) and ἐδίδου αὐτοῖς ἐξουσίαν (edidos autois exousian, give them power/authority) to think that they take away from new creation imagery above and in the previous verse or override an important definition of “exousia”, a capacity to choose.
This matter of choice will be important as we will find out that there is no authority seed that is planted within the Twelve that will work independent of them. There will be failures of this mission later in 9:18, and Luke 10:17 also records some surprise that they did any exorcising at all.
Knowing what we do about the disciples in general and the Twelve in specific, we might picture the pairs talking with one another about coming back with the most examples of power used for good. They might self-generously recollect, “it was those others who were scared in the storm”, or “how willing we were to share what we had before those others blurted out their financial limit at one of the feedings”. So easily a joint effort is lost through our desire to be approved. “Surely we will come back as the Number 1 team!”
Being able to coordinate and keep the pairs joined in mission, is problematic. “Mutual partnership” (Swanson192) is critical.