Matthew 9:35-38 & 10:8-23
9:35 Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and proclaiming the good news of the kingdom, and curing every disease and every sickness.
9:36 When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.
9:37 Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few;
9:38 therefore ask the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.”
10:1 Then Jesus summoned his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to cure every disease and every sickness.
10:2 These are the names of the twelve apostles: first, Simon, also known as Peter, and his brother Andrew; James son of Zebedee, and his brother John;
10:3 Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus;
10:4 Simon the Cananaean, and Judas Iscariot, the one who betrayed him.
10:5 These twelve Jesus sent out with the following instructions: “Go nowhere among the Gentiles, and enter no town of the Samaritans,
10:6 but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.
10:7 As you go, proclaim the good news, ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near.’
10:8 Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons. You received without payment; give without payment.
10:9 Take no gold, or silver, or copper in your belts,
10:10 no bag for your journey, or two tunics, or sandals, or a staff; for laborers deserve their food.
10:11 Whatever town or village you enter, find out who in it is worthy, and stay there until you leave.
10:12 As you enter the house, greet it.
10:13 If the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it; but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you.
10:14 If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet as you leave that house or town.
10:15 Truly I tell you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment than for that town.
10:16 “See, I am sending you out like sheep into the midst of wolves; so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.
10:17 Beware of them, for they will hand you over to councils and flog you in their synagogues;
10:18 and you will be dragged before governors and kings because of me, as a testimony to them and the Gentiles.
10:19 When they hand you over, do not worry about how you are to speak or what you are to say; for what you are to say will be given to you at that time;
10:20 for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.
10:21 Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child, and children will rise against parents and have them put to death;
10:22 and you will be hated by all because of my name. But the one who endures to the end will be saved.
10:23 When they persecute you in one town, flee to the next; for truly I tell you, you will not have gone through all the towns of Israel before the Son of Man comes.”
This was the first time that the disciples were being sent out to spread the good news of Christ and were given the authority by Jesus to proclaim His power. The point of this passage is to show that all the strength and power to spread the Gospel comes from Christ alone. Furthermore, this is a message that is not going to be accepted easily. There will be many who will whole heartedly reject the message of the Gospel and furthermore, act in opposition towards you.
Jesus warns that being a Christian is not going to be an easy task. He tells them that following after Him will be a major sacrifice and may put not only their reputation on the line but their lives in danger as well. The Gospel and the name of Jesus is not a popular message among many people. This is a task that only He can equip us for. Our strength to do the work of Jesus Christ comes from Him alone.
The types of dangers that we face in this world come in many different forms. Some of those things that Jesus touches on are there will be those who will attempt to steer them away from the truth and there will also be those who will openly attempt to destroy and persecute them for speaking about the name of Jesus.
Despite all of these dangers, Jesus offers them a message of hope that trumps all of their fears. This message entails that throughout these potential hard times, they can still find their comfort and strength in Him alone. In addition, at the end of of our lives, we will spend eternity with Christ and living with Him in His presence forevermore.
Take comfort in knowing that Jesus Christ offers us peace and strength in times of opposition. Trust that He will use you despite what hardships you may face and that the Gospel will go forth no matter what.