Session #075 As You Go
Scripture Matthew 10:7-15
Summary Matthew 10:7-15 contains instructions to Team Jesus as they move on their kingdom assignments. The priority is to proclaim the good news of the kingdom. On this note, we have a responsibility to represent Jesus and His kingdom rightly and accurately. Kingdom paradigms of power, grace and provision accompany the proclamation of the kingdom message. At the same time, be prepared for reactions, both positive and negative.
And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give. Provide neither gold nor silver nor copper in your money belts, nor bag for your journey, nor two tunics, nor sandals, nor staffs; for a worker is worthy of his food. “Now whatever city or town you enter, inquire who in it is worthy, and stay there till you go out. And when you go into a household, greet it. If the household is worthy, let your peace come upon it. But if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. And whoever will not receive you nor hear your words, when you depart from that house or city, shake off the dust from your feet. Assuredly, 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! Matthew 10:7-15
Jesus gives the disciples instructions on what to preach and do, and what to do for different responses to their message as well.
Kingdom Message: As You Go … Preach! (Matthew 10:7)
Kingdom ambassadors represent the king to declare His kingdom. “Preach” in Greek is kerusso which means to proclaim, announce publicly. Their message was very simple, “The kingdom of heaven is near.” This is the same message that John the Baptist and Jesus both preached earlier in Matthew 3:2, 4:17. The invitation is for everyone to turn and return to the king. To stop living as if you are the king, stop serving other kings and kingdoms, and stop serving sin as your master (Romans 6:16).
Today, we are to preach the same message as Peter did in Acts 2:38, repent and return to Jesus Christ.
Everything that is done or displayed takes place in the context of the kingdom of God. With our words or actions, we either represent or misrepresent the king or His kingdom. We do not get to declare our message, or what we prefer. Our responsibility is to preach the word of the kingdom, to stay true to the Word (2 Timothy 4:1-5).
Is it enough just to mention God, Jesus, Love, and quote a few Scriptures? No. It must stay true to the Word. It must accurately represent the king and His kingdom. We are finally accountable to Jesus “who will judge the living and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom” (2 Timothy 4:1)
Kingdom Paradigms (Matthew 10:8-9)
Power and Authority – Matthew 10:8a
The preaching of the Word is accompanied by signs (Mark 16:15-17). It is not necessarily in this order as signs can come first but there must still be the preaching of the word of the kingdom. There is both declaration and demonstration as in Matthew 8 and 9.
Signs affirm the authorization of the king. The kingdom has power over disease, death, and demons. The king has authority in both physical and spiritual realms. Physical deliverance points to spiritual salvation. Deliverance over these points to greater deliverance over sin
(Matthew 1:21). Jesus has come to break the enemy’s hold over people through sin.
Salvation into the kingdom points to the rule and reign of the king, no longer bound to sin and free to serve the king. Our lives are transformed and we will be led to kingdom assignments.
Grace – Matthew 10:8b
Entry into the kingdom through salvation is a gift. It is by grace (Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:8–9). Our tendency to think that we deserve the gift, but not others. Our sins are not as great as the other person’s. So we should get it free but they should pay or work harder to earn it.
The kingdom is meant to be received and then given. Your personal experience is to be given. You give what you have received. If you have received but are not giving, then you have received it in vain (Ephesians 3:2; Colossians 1:25).
Provision – Matthew 10:9-10
Jesus also gives them the reason for this instruction: “the worker is worthy of his food.” They were on a mission from God, which means they were working for God, which means God would take care of them. They were to go forth on a mission fully trusting God to provide for all their needs (Leviticus 19:13; Deuteronomy 24:15).
Paul uses the same principle, and quotes from Deuteronomy 25:4 in 1 Corinthians 9:9-12 and 1 Timothy 5:17 as well.
The gospel is to be given freely and without charge. They are not to collect any fees for their work from the people (1 Corinthians 9:18; 1 Timothy 6:5). We go in faith trusting God to provide (Philippians 4:11–13).
Provision: Dependence and Trust
The kingdom is about community. We need one another and are expected to serve one another. This provides an opportunity for others to learn how to be hospitable and generous. However, we are not to take advantage of others (2 Corinthians 11:7–15).
There is nothing wrong with working to support yourself, just as Paul did. This enables you to minister to others in Singapore and other countries. Many business people and professionals adopt this model. Regardless of whether the trade is one’s own or another, the dependence is on God.
The disciples are to rely on the Lord for all of their needs (Matthew 10:10). They are to take nothing with them. They are to live simply. They are not to be overly concerned with material things.
Reactions to the Kingdom Message (Matthew 10:11–15)
Before you reach the city, start with households. Be prepared for how people respond to the message of the kingdom of God as not everyone wants to know about the kingdom of God.
Work with and work through those who are willing to work with you.
A household is deemed worthy if it receives the messenger and the message. The promise of shalom is the kingdom’s campaign theme (Philippians 4:6-7). It does not mean that there will be no more storms and challenges in life but peace through the storms and challenges. This is the eschatological hope of shalom.
When good news becomes bad news, and the household rejects the message, shake off the dust from your feet just as Paul did in Corinth when they rejected the message (Acts 18:6).
Those who reject the message are rejecting Christ Himself. The judgment that comes in the future will be worse than Sodom and Gomorrah (Matthew 12:6, 41–42; 23:35–36).
We must be responsible to present both the good and the bad news. When good news is rejected, it becomes really bad news. We need to warn those who reject the gospel. Not in anger or pride but pleading with them in an attitude of compassion and love.
Are we being responsible as ambassadors of Christ? Look for people receptive to the gospel and warn those who do not accept the gospel.
Kingdom assignments carry a kingdom message – be bold to declare it. That makes all the difference in how you live your life from here on out. Kingdom paradigms of power, grace, and provision accompany the proclamation of the kingdom message. As you go be prepared for the responses to the kingdom message, good or bad.