Matthew 10:5-42

Thy Word:

Jesus sent out the twelve apostles with these instructions: “Don’t go to the Gentiles or the Samaritans, but only to the people of Israel—God’s lost sheep. Go and announce to them that the Kingdom of Heaven is near. Heal the sick, raise the dead, cure those with leprosy, and cast out demons. Give as freely as you have received!

“Don’t take any money in your money belts—no gold, silver, or even copper coins. Don’t carry a traveler’s bag with a change of clothes and sandals or even a walking stick. Don’t hesitate to accept hospitality, because those who work deserve to be fed.

“Whenever you enter a city or village, search for a worthy person and stay in his home until you leave town. When you enter the home, give it your blessing. If it turns out to be a worthy home, let your blessing stand; if it is not, take back the blessing. If any household or town refuses to welcome you or listen to your message, shake its dust from your feet as you leave. I tell you the truth, the wicked cities of Sodom and Gomorrah will be better off than such a town on the judgment day.

“Look, I am sending you out as sheep among wolves. So be as shrewd as snakes and harmless as doves. But beware! For you will be handed over to the courts and will be flogged with whips in the synagogues. You will stand trial before governors and kings because you are my followers. But this will be your opportunity to tell the rulers and other unbelievers about me. When you are arrested, don’t worry about how to respond or what to say. God will give you the right words at the right time. For it is not you who will be speaking—it will be the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.

“A brother will betray his brother to death, a father will betray his own child, and children will rebel against their parents and cause them to be killed. And all nations will hate you because you are my followers. But everyone who endures to the end will be saved. When you are persecuted in one town, flee to the next. I tell you the truth, the Son of Man will return before you have reached all the towns of Israel.

“Students are not greater than their teacher, and slaves are not greater than their master. Students are to be like their teacher, and slaves are to be like their master. And since I, the master of the household, have been called the prince of demons, the members of my household will be called by even worse names!

“But don’t be afraid of those who threaten you. For the time is coming when everything that is covered will be revealed, and all that is secret will be made known to all. What I tell you now in the darkness, shout abroad when daybreak comes. What I whisper in your ear, shout from the housetops for all to hear!

“Don’t be afraid of those who want to kill your body; they cannot touch your soul. Fear only God, who can destroy both soul and body in hell. What is the price of two sparrows—one copper coin? But not a single sparrow can fall to the ground without your Father knowing it. And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.

“Everyone who acknowledges me publicly here on earth, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. But everyone who denies me here on earth, I will also deny before my Father in heaven.

“Don’t imagine that I came to bring peace to the earth! I came not to bring peace, but a sword.

‘I have come to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. Your enemies will be right in your own household!’

“If you love your father or mother more than you love me, you are not worthy of being mine; or if you love your son or daughter more than me, you are not worthy of being mine. If you refuse to take up your cross and follow me, you are not worthy of being mine. If you cling to your life, you will lose it; but if you give up your life for me, you will find it.

“Anyone who receives you receives me, and anyone who receives me receives the Father who sent me. If you receive a prophet as one who speaks for God, you will be given the same reward as a prophet. And if you receive righteous people because of their righteousness, you will be given a reward like theirs. And if you give even a cup of cold water to one of the least of my followers, you will surely be rewarded.”

Matthew 10:5-42 NLT


My Thoughts: I’ve been out of pocket for a while because Jesus has been walking me through some personal changes. Change is good when Jesus is directing, but the journey is not always easy, am I right?

On top of that we’ve had another great granddaughter enter into our lives! We are so blessed! No pictures included because we can’t be too careful these days, but they are both precious!

We also just adopted a four year old rescue dog on 3/13! It’s been awhile since I’ve owned a big dog and I think Miss Daisy qualifies as my biggest at 84 pounds! Here are pictures of this big baby which I can show on my blog!



Now let’s get down to business and catch up quickly! In my last blog for the book of Matthew, Jesus was preparing his disciples to go out and share the good news of Jesus Christ. They were disciples as they learned about Jesus but when they left for their first assignment they were now his apostles.

First, Jesus prepares his apostles with very specific instructions to only approach the Jews!

ask blackboard chalk board chalkboard

What??? Did you just hear the sound of skidding brakes in your head because we thought the gospel was for everyone? I sure did! We can rest easy, because Jesus isn’t excluding Gentiles or Samaritans, he is just sharing the gospel in the proper order; He did come for the Jews first:

“For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ. It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes—the Jew first and also the Gentile.” Romans 1:16 NLT

“After all, is God the God of the Jews only? Isn’t he also the God of the Gentiles? Of course he is. There is only one God, and he makes people right with himself only by faith, whether they are Jews or Gentiles.” Romans 3:29-30 NLT

Then Peter replied, “I see very clearly that God shows no favoritism. In every nation he accepts those who fear him and do what is right.” Acts of the Apostles 10:34-35 NLT

(For clarification, a Gentile is anyone who is not Jewish, and a Samaritan is a mixed race of Jew and Gentile.)

The first verse says that God’s plan is to save everyone who believes, but the journey starts with the Jews. Otherwise, we see in all of these verses, no one is excluded from God’s plan of salvation and eternal life through Jesus Christ. How magnificent it would be if the Jews, God’s chosen people, believed first and then shared this truth with everyone! The steps for believing Jesus is the Messiah has been laid out clearly in the Bible should anyone decide to look for this truth.

Aside note: When I saw the phrase ‘Kingdom of Heaven is near’ in verse seven, I looked for clarification in my study Bible. They say it points to the Jews waiting for the Messiah to bring about the new kingdom. They hoped for political and military kingdoms that would free them from Roman rule and return them to the glory days under David and Solomon. But Jesus was talking about a spiritual kingdom so the gospel we share even today is that the kingdom is still near. This new age starts immediately after the Return of Christ.

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I know there is a lot of reading today, but there was really no reason to split up the verses. I do hope you took the time to read everything that Jesus says to his men. He explicitly guides his new apostles and he was very candid about the good and bad things they would encounter! He started with this truth:

“Give as freely as you have received!”

They were to share all the blessings they themselves had received from Jesus, as well as perform miracles. In addition they were to go to these towns empty handed and expect all of their needs to be met by the locals. In other words they needed to rely fully on the kindness and generosity of people who may have been complete strangers. Can you imagine their excitement and willingness to get going?

man wearing pink dress shirt walking through stairs

However, the next truth had to have caused them to lose whatever excitement they may have had initially! Jesus told them they should expect persecution, they would be beaten, and their own families would turn against them for sharing the gospel. He warned them to be as shrewd as snakes yet as harmless as doves. The very men they were going to tell about Jesus could be the same men who turned them over to local authorities to be arrested or flogged. So Jesus tells them to be on guard!

woman wearing pink top

Maybe you are asking yourself, why in the world would they go? I think they went willingly for two reasons:

  1. Jesus also promised blessings! In times of trouble when they needed to speak, God would give them the right words at the right time through the Spirit. I love knowing God will give me just the right words to say when I need to fully represent the kingdom. Also Jesus tells them, “Whoever acknowledges me before men, I will also acknowledge him before my Father in heaven.” He expands on that more in the final paragraph.
  2. The second reason is the main reason I am driven to share Jesus in spite of the risks and challenges: so unbelievers will come to know Christ. Many of my beloved family members and friends have not surrendered theirs hearts to Jesus. I am bold for them and I hope you are too, primarily because my loved ones won’t hear it from me, but maybe they will listen to you!

The bottom line? Everything in life has risks and challenges, so why not take those risks as an apostle for Jesus because he offers some pretty magnificent rewards!


Closing Prayer: Father God, I thank You for the amazing promises You give when we first surrender to You, and then share that truth with others. I pray that we all remember Your promise that the Spirit will guide our words when we are called to speak about Your authority and blessing in our lives. Father I love that there are still people today who are not only called for special mission trips, but are willing to go and tell, in spite of the risks, just for You. I pray that we remember it’s an act of obedience to You, to fully equip and provide for those called on these mission trips. Thank You for this clear picture of the blessings and risks we encounter so we don’t become bitter or downtrodden when we do encounter hardships. Father we love that You fully prepare us for everything. We ask for extra blessings and protection for all who boldly speak for You. In the name of Jesus I pray. Amen.


Luke 22:40


Thy Word:

There he told them, “Pray that you will not give in to temptation.” Luke 22:40


My Thoughts:

In my desperation I prayed, “Where are you LORD?”

My Father’s response, “Where is your faith?”


Closing Prayer: LORD, help me in my weakness to remember to bow my knees before I open my mouth and forgive me for failing to remember that as I walk through this difficult time of change in my life. May I remember to honor you by seeking answers from You first in prayer. In the name of Jesus I pray. Amen.

Psalm118:5, 8-9

“In my distress I prayed to the Lord, and the Lord answered me and set me free.

It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in people. It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in princes.” Psalms 118:5, 8-9 NLT

My most difficult times of imprisonment came when I threw myself in there. I allowed my thoughts to take me captive while I pretended all was well on the outside. Father always remind me You redeemed me and set me free. May I always remember to ask “what say ye, Lord” before I allow the unknown or my own thoughts to place me in a prison of lies. In the name of Jesus I pray. Amen!

Matthew 10:1-4

Thy Word:

Jesus Sends Out the Twelve Apostles

“Jesus called his twelve disciples to him and gave them authority to drive out impure spirits and to heal every disease and sickness. These are the names of the twelve apostles:

first, Simon (also called Peter),

then Andrew (Peter’s brother),

James (son of Zebedee),

John (James’s brother),




Matthew (the tax collector),

James (son of Alphaeus),

Thaddaeus, Simon (the zealot ),

Judas Iscariot (who later betrayed him).

Matthew 10:1-4 NLT


ask blackboard chalk board chalkboard

My Thoughts: I can’t even get into the story because I can’t get beyond the title and those first two verses! Apostle…, Disciples…, Apostles! Are these men Apostles or are they Disciples? Did you wonder too?

black and white book business close up

Let’s look at some definitions from Webster’s 1828 Dictionary. Yes, that is the year of this Dictionary! If you’ve never looked up definitions here, I highly recommend it because I love the older definitions to compare with the modern. Since we don’t really use the words disciple or apostle as much anymore I thought this dictionary’s description might be a little more detailed.

Disciple: 1. A learner; a scholar; one who receives or professes to receive instruction from another. 2. A follower; an adherent to the doctrines of another. Hence the constant attendants of Christ were called his disciples; and hence all Christians are called his disciples, as they profess to learn and receive his doctrines and precepts.

Apostle: A person deputed to execute some important business; but appropriately, a disciple of Christ commissioned to preach the gospel.

high angle view of pencils on table

Do you see the difference? While the twelve were following Jesus he was teaching them and they were learning how to share the gospel so they were disciples.

Our chapter begins with Jesus telling his faithful twelve that he was sending them out “with authority” to do what he was doing. Jesus knew their training was over and it was time for them to be apostles and demonstrate what they had learned.

It is the same for us when we become believers and followers of Jesus Christ. He wants us to start our journey by getting to know all about him; therefore, we are his disciples.

opened bible on wooden surfaca

When I became a Christian I immediately had an unquenchable thirst to learn about Jesus and have a relationship with him. I started by regularly attending a Bible teaching church, I took classes at that church, and also attended independent Bible training (BSF). I learned how to pray, and I regularly read the Bible. I was an active disciple!

But I remember the day I finished my last BSF training class I felt a new stirring in my soul that I can only explain as a sense of urgency to get busy. I knew the Lord was calling me to be his apostle. Since then I have been using my gifts to share the gospel. I started small, although those victories were huge confidence boosters. Now I share the gospel through my writings until Jesus tells me the next phase. 😊

The day will also come when all believers will have learned enough and be ready to move from being a disciple to an apostle. The last thing Jesus said to his disciples, and also to us was:

“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1:8 NIV

The training we get prepares us to share the good news of Jesus no matter where he sends us. He also tells us we must be prepared to share what we believe:

“Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect,”

1 Peter 3:15b NIV

We have all been asked (as believers of Jesus) to share the gospel with gentleness and respect.

brown lion

That last part is extremely important. We won’t win hearts for Jesus by abrasive behavior. Believe me, I made this mistake one time and I continue to suffer the consequences. Jesus tells us to heal not hurt. We are ALL sinners so our humility, love, and grace with truth are critical to pointing hearts to Jesus so he can capture them.

Of course, the best part about being an apostle is seeing sinners surrender their hearts to Jesus. They are not only forgiven, but the healing process from the consequences of their sins, and maybe even a broken past, begins. Changes don’t happen in an instant, but there is nothing more amazing than watching brokenness turn into stunning pieces of stained glass, all put together to form something beautiful. The scars may remain, but that’s part of their (our) salvation story to share and draw others to Christ. I love that, don’t you?

man standing near window

Learning about Jesus and telling about Jesus is one of the greatest privileges of my life and I pray it is for you too! Remember, we have a harvest waiting for us!

woman picking plant on field


Let’s Talk About Bibles: When I became a Christian my husband bought me a beautiful King James Bible which I still cherish. However, as a new Christian, I needed something a little easier to help me learn. Together we bought a Life Application Study (LAS) Bible. I recommend everyone own a LAS Bible (there are multiple versions) because comments are written at the bottom of each page. They provide a lot of extra information about Bible verses which was great for me as a new believer/reader. In fact, I still refer to them from time to time!

Another very helpful item in the back of my LAS Bible was a daily Bible reading guide. I started in September and never missed a day reading because I wanted that relationship with Jesus so badly. By January of the next year the words I was reading were very personal! I knew God was talking with me specifically every day and while I still hear from God, that time remains one of the most precious times of my life!

For the record, this was MY experience and I’m sure yours is/will be different. But if you are faithful, God is faithful and the Bible is one of the greatest ways He speaks to us. Don’t give up reading!

photo of child reading holy bible

Bible Versions: There are a lot of Bible versions on the market. When I bought my LAS Bible, I got a NIV version because that was what our church was using. I recommend you also use what your church of choice uses. I currently own multiple Bible versions and I refer to them often.

If you are a new believer, more conversational versions of the Bible are The Message (MSG), The New Living Translation (NLT), which I use for my blog, and the Amplified Version (AMP).

If you want to quickly look at and compare verses easily I recommend an online Bible. I use YouVersion when I’m reading daily and want to quickly compare different versions. It also has daily bible devotions which I find helpful for learning. I also use it for blogging so I can quickly and accurately copy the verses for us to read. Another online version is The Blue Letter Bible and it is full of lots of additional information which will be helpful as you learn.

smartphone ipad tablet white

Bibles are not inexpensive, although some Bible bookstores will have them on sale. There are also used bookstores, Amazon, and eBay, for purchasing Bibles. In other words, you don’t have to spend a lot of money. The YouVersion app is free and you can download it to your smart phone or tablet.


Closing Prayer: Father thank you for this lesson that helps us understand the difference between disciples and apostles. Sometimes taking the time to understand before we jump into a chapter makes the reading that much more meaningful and I thank you for your guidance in this specific lesson. Father my prayers are that all of us take the time to learn about you, develop that relationship with you and then using your guidance with your words in the Bible, share what you want us to tell gently and respectfully! Amen!