Matthew 10

The call of Jesus to His service is His enabling for that service. He stands with His servants in all their trials, takes notice of every insult they are called upon to endure, honors them in this life for their witness of Him and will abundantly reward them in the next life for all their faithfulness. No cross, no crown. No gall, no glory.

1 And when he had called unto him his twelve disciples, he gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease.

2 Now the names of the twelve apostles are these; The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother;

3 Philip, and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the publican; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus;

4 Simon the Canaanite, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed him.

5 These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not:

6 But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.

7 And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand.

8 Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.

9 Provide neither gold, nor silver, nor brass in your purses,

10 Nor scrip for your journey, neither two coats, neither shoes, nor yet staves: for the workman is worthy of his meat.

11 And into whatsoever city or town ye shall enter, enquire who in it is worthy; and there abide till ye go thence.

12 And when ye come into an house, salute it.

13 And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it: but if it be not worthy, let your peace return to you.

14 And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shake off the dust of your feet.

15 Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city.

16 ¶ Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.

17 But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues;

18 And ye shall be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a testimony against them and the Gentiles.

19 But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak.

20 For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you.

21 And the brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the child: and the children shall rise up against their parents, and cause them to be put to death.

22 And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.

23 But when they persecute you in this city, flee ye into another: for verily I say unto you, Ye shall not have gone over the cities of Israel, till the Son of man be come.

24 The disciple is not above his master, nor the servant above his lord.

25 It is enough for the disciple that he be as his master, and the servant as his lord. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more shall they call them of his household?

26 Fear them not therefore: for there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; and hid, that shall not be known.

27 What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light: and what ye hear in the ear, that preach ye upon the housetops.

28 And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

29 Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father.

30 But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.

31 Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.

32 Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven.

33 But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.

34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.

35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.

36 And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household.

37 He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.

38 And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.

39 He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it.

40 ¶ He that receiveth you receiveth me, and he that receiveth me receiveth him that sent me.

41 He that receiveth a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward; and he that receiveth a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward.

42 And whosoever shall give to drink unto one of these little ones a cup of cold water only in the name of a disciple, verily I say unto you, he shall in no wise lose his reward.

Matthew 10:1-4 – ​Planning the Harvest

   Pray for laborers, and you will become a laborer. Begin as a disciple, and you will become an apostle. Our Lord is king, and if He sends, He gives His signet ring of authority. See Matthew 28:18. How little did these men dream that their names would be engraved on the foundations of the New Jerusalem, Revelation 21:14. —Through the Bible Day by Day

Matthew 10:5-15 – ​Missionaries Sent out

   For the present, the Twelve were to confine themselves to Jews, because the Lord’s ministry was the climax of the Jewish probation and it was desirable that every opportunity should be given to the lost sheep of the house of Israel to repent. God can never be unmindful of any covenant into which He has entered with the soul. If we believe not, He remaineth faithful.
   May we not say that our Lord was the first medical missionary? He has taught us that the healing of disease is often the best way of approaching the soul. The kingdom of God deals not only with our eternal welfare, but with the conditions of human life. On Christ’s head are many crowns; social, family and civic life are departments of His beneficent reign. His servants must be without worldly entanglements and live in absolute dependence upon God to whom they have consecrated their lives. The peace of God goes forth and returns. —Through the Bible Day by Day

Matthew 10:16-23 – ​Steadfast under Persecution

   The way of the servants and heralds of Christ will never be easy. From the first, it has been lined with jagged flints. On the one hand, they are assailed by the rulers and potentates of this world; and on the other, by the members of their own homes. See Acts 4:25. But all these experiences are permitted in order to secure an entrance for their message into the most unlikely places, II Timothy 4:17. The fact of the disciples being driven from city to city brought the gospel within the reach of a much wider audience than if they had remained in peace in one center. See Acts 11:19.
   But when we are persecuted for the Lord’s sake, the Father bends over us with tender pity and helpfulness, John 12:26. And we are supplied, from the Eternal Light and Love, with a wisdom of speech and an unfailing patience of love that cannot be gainsaid. —Through the Bible Day by Day

​Matthew 10:19 – How often hast thou found thyself, at the entrance into a duty, becalmed, as a ship, which, at first setting sail, hath hardly wind to swell its sails while under the shore and shadow of the trees, but meets a fresh gale of wind when got into the open sea! Yea, didst thou never launch out to duty as the apostles to sea, when the wind in thy face, as if the Spirit of God, instead of helping thee on, meant to drive thee back, and yet hast found Christ walking to thee before the duty was done, and a prosperous voyage made of it at last? Abraham saw not the ram which God had provided for his sacrifice till he was in the mount. In the mount of prayer God is seen, even when the Christian does often go up the hill toward duty with a heavy heart because he can as yet have no sight of Him. Turn not, therefore, back, but go on with courage: He may be nearer than thou thinkest. “In that same hour”, saith Christ, “it shall be given you.” (Gurnall)

Matthew 10:24-33 – ​Fearless Confessors of Christ

   The more Christlike we are, the more certainly shall we incur the dislike and hatred of men. Only let us take care that they hate us, not on account of our personal peculiarities and pretensions, but solely for the truth’s sake. See I Kings 22:8; Daniel 6:5.
   Christ is often speaking. In the secret chamber of the heart, in the darkness of the night, in the shadowed room of pain and sorrow, in the room which holds all that is mortal of our beloved, hear His voice. It may be in dark sayings, but they are the “dark saying upon the harp”, of which the psalmist sings (Psalm 49:4). There are music, tenderness, love-notes in these dark sayings. And our hearts can receive lasting impressions in the dark.
   Remember that in all your anxiety and pain, the Father is near. His presence encloses you in its gentle, holy embrace. You are of value to Him, of more value than you can count, because you were purchased with the precious blood of Christ. —Through the Bible Day by Day

Matthew 10:27—What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light.

​   These striking words are applicable to us all, Our Lord is constantly taking us into the dark, that He may tell us things. Into the dark of the shadowed home, where bereavement has drawn down the blinds; into the dark of the lonely, desolate life, here some infirmity closes us in from the light and stir of life; into the dark of some crushing sorrow and disappointment. Then He tells us his secrets, great and wonderful, eternal and infinite. The eye, which has become dazzled by the glare of earth, becomes able to behold the heavenly constellations; and the ear to detect the undertones of his voice, which is often drowned amid the tumult of earth’s strident cries.
   But such revelations always imply a corresponding responsibility—that speak ye in the light—that preach ye upon the housetops. We are not meant to linger always in the dark, or stay in the closet; presently we shall be summoned to take our place in the rush and storm of life; and when that moment comes, we are to speak and proclaim what we have learnt.
   This gives a new meaning to suffering, the saddest element in which is often its apparent aimlessness. “How useless I am.” “What am I doing for the betterment of men?” “Wherefore this waste of the precious spikenard of my soul.” Such are the desperate laments of the sufferer. But God has a purpose in it all. He has withdrawn his child to the higher altitudes of fellowship, that he may hear God speaking face to face, and bear the message to his fellows at the mountain foot. Were the forty days wasted that Moses spent on the Mount, or the period spent at Horeb by Elijah, or the years spent in Arabia by Paul? —Our Daily Homily

Matthew 10:34-42 – ​Receiving Christ’s Representatives

   In Jesus Christ we acquire a new affinity, stronger than that of family ties. When we enter into the family of God we belong to all His children. They are our brethren and sisters in the most intimate sense. See Matthew 12:48-50. The new love that floods our nature does not make us less but more tender and sympathetic toward our own kith and kin; but if we are compelled to choose, then we must stand with the children of God, though it should rend us from the old happy family life in which we were nurtured.
   As to the closing paragraph, may we not illustrate it thus? When the widow who sustained Elijah at Zarephath entered Paradise, she found herself standing amid the great prophets of Israel. When she asked the attendant angel whether there was not some mistake, he replied, “Certainly not. In treating the prophet as you did, you proved yourself to be of the same spirit and temper as he; and it is but right that you should share in the prophet’s reward.” —Through the Bible Day by Day

Matthew 10:38 – ​The cross is easier to him who takes it up than to him who drags it along. (J.E. Vaux)

Matthew 10:42 – ​Life affords but few opportunities of doing great services for others; but there is scarcely an hour of the day that does not afford us an opportunity of performing some little, it may be unnoticed kindness. (Bowes)