"Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty deeds done in your midst had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would long ago have repented, sitting in sackcloth and ashes. But it will be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the judgment than for you. And as for you, Capernaum, 'Will you be exalted to heaven? You will go down to the netherworld.'" Whoever listens to you listens to me. Whoever rejects you rejects me. And whoever rejects me rejects the one who sent me." (Lk 10:13-16)
Chorazin, Bethsaida, and Capernaum are the cities wherein most of Jesus’ mighty works were done (Mt 11:20). These cities enjoyed greater privileges. They were all gracious works and works of mercy. Because of these activities of Jesus, these cities were exalted far above. They were brought as near heaven as external means could bring them.
Any refusal to the invitation by the disciples would bring the people to disaster. The disaster is going in the opposite direction from God. This would mean throwing themselves into the hands of the pagan power. This would be worse than the sufferings faced by the wicked cities of the Old Testament.
It would be more tolerable for the pagan towns because they were not given such chances and if they were given those chances they would have repented. Repentance is part of the message of the kingdom of God.
After this the Lord appointed seventy (-two) others whom he sent ahead of him in pairs to every town and place he intended to visit. He said to them, "The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest. Go on your way; behold, I am sending you like lambs among wolves. Carry no money bag, no sack, no sandals; and greet no one along the way. Into whatever house you enter, first say, 'Peace to this household.' If a peaceful person lives there, your peace will rest on him; but if not, it will return to you… (Lk 10:1-12)
Jesus sent seventy (+two) ahead of him. They were sent to prepare for his visit. It is only a preparatory work. Hence they had no need to stay longer there and they did not have the need to take extra money and extra cloths etc. Their mission was urgent and hence they did not have the need to build up relationship with anyone greeting them etc. Their mission was only to announce the coming of Jesus and prepare for his visit. It had nothing to do with themselves.
Were there seventy or seventy two? There has been much discussion on this. It should have had some symbolic meaning. If Luke was seeing Jesus in the light of Moses then the symbolic meaning had an interesting result. Moses chose 70 elders to assist him and thy were given a share in God’s spirit (Numbers 11.16,25). The 70 were to assist Moses in leading the people (exodus). Here Jesus has begun a journey of New Exodus and hence the 70 were appointed to assist in this mission.
The message of the 70 was, 'Peace to this household’. But the Jews of the time of Jesus were for all out war against the Romans and Samaritans etc. They wanted justice to be done which would only mean destroying the enemy. But the kingdom that Jesus was ushering in was to reveal the love of God and that too a healing love of God. This healing love of God was seen in peace, peace with everyone. So the new exodus was leading people forward to the kingdom with peace and not looking backward (to Egypt for the people of Israel at the time of Moses) with violence and hatred towards enemies.