Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Matthew 10: 8-23



Please re-read Matthew 10:8-23

If I were hiring 12 guys to go out and do my biding with the rules set forth in these verse I would have no takers. We live in a capitalist society. We always expect to get something for what we give. In these verses it is just the opposite. Expect nothing, take nothing, and carry nothing with you. The first two verses say: Mat 10:8 “Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons. Freely you received, freely give. Mat 10:9  "Do not acquire gold, or silver, or copper for your money belts, Mat 10:10  or a bag for your journey, or even two coats, or sandals, or a staff; for the worker is worthy of his support. You can heal raise people from the dead and you will receive nothing for it except room and board. Why would anyone take that deal? Jesus said what is freely given to you should be freely be given to others (my paraphrase). If the Son of the God of all the heavens gives you an command I think that you would do just that. If you had seen what these disciples had seen and now those powers were given to you. I think it wouldn’t be hard to follow his commands.

Mat 10:11And whatever city or village you enter, inquire who is worthy in it, and stay at his house until you leave that city. Mat 10:12As you enter the house, give it your greeting. Mat 10:13If the house is worthy, give it your blessing of peace. But if it is not worthy, take back your blessing of peace. Mat 10:14Whoever does not receive you, nor heed your words, as you go out of that house or that city, shake the dust off your feet. Mat 10:15Truly I say to you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the Day of Judgment than for that city.

If you want to read about Sodom and Gomorrah you can do so at Genesis 14. Read on for several chapters and you will see why the threat of ending that way is undesirable.
The disciples were to look for a worthy house. The Message translates this to be a Good man’s house. Not rich but one that is honest and can see the worthiness of Christ. When you find it stay there and bless the home. If you find they are not worth then do not bless them.

So what does bless them mean? If the house is worthy, open to the gospel, then bless them. That would be a reward of knowing Jesus as their savior and their reward would be in heaven. If they are not worthy, not open to the gospel, then bad things will happen and they would have been better off in Sodom and Gomorrah. Not the outcome I would prefer.

Mat 10:16  "Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves. Mat 10:17But beware of men, for they will hand you over to the courts and scourge you in their synagogues; Mat 10:18 and you will even be brought before governors and kings for my sake, as a testimony to them and to the Gentiles. Mat 10:19But when they hand you over, do not worry about how or what you are to say; for it will be given you in that hour what you are to say. Mat 10:20For it is not you who speak, but it is the Spirit of your Father who speaks in you. Mat 10:21Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child; and children will rise up against parents and cause them to be put to death.

      Mat 10:22You will be hated by all because of My name, but it is the one who has endured to the end who will be saved. Mat 10:23 "But whenever they persecute you in one city, flee to the next; for truly I say to you, you will not finish going through the cities of Israel until the Son of Man comes.

We are back to the stuff that would scare the average human. Things like you will be hated, brought before the powers that be. But the new thing here is that they will know what to say and when to say it. In other words as we would know it, the Holy Spirit will be with you and guide you. The last piece is interesting. If the town does not accept you and your message leave and wipe the dust from your feet. In other words forget about them and move on to fertile ground. Jesus also said that they will not finish before the Son of Man comes. That would be the  crucifixion and the resurrection.