By John Larkins
If we cannot read and see what Jesus said, how can be understand His saving teaching? In order to continue their profession, the false teachers will only tell you what they think you want to hear. The heading to Matthew’s chapter 10, in my King James version, is, “Instructions to the Disciples.”
Now, let us stop a minute and see if we can figure out what is going on. I suggest that Jesus is now “converting” living people to His new church! Jesus directed His apostles not to tell the Gentiles at that time but to concentrate on “the lost sheep of the house of Israel” rather than the Samaritans who rejected God’s authority and formed their own “church.” The Samaritans worshiped Baal and killed babies as offerings to him. The Gentiles were a broad class of non-Jewish people. The time would come after Jesus’s resurrection for converting them and the Samaritans. Jesus was not polishing up the Hebrew religion; He was replacing it!
Several times in the scripture, Jesus is said to be weeping for Jerusalem and for the mothers of those citizens. He knew, as He said before, that “The Way” to His Father’s kingdom is narrow, and many will not find it. It is not so much finding something hidden as it is to letting go of our constant self-centeredness and accepting His authority. Jesus is the ultimate champion of assuring us that He will not force Himself on us but honoring our choice as the supreme human right.
The miracles these men performed created the aura of change, that they had an earth-shaking message to deliver and they would be ignored at great consequences. “And as you go, preach, saying The Kingdom of God is at hand.” “Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, freely you have received, freely give, cast out the devils.”
Matthew 10: 11-15 says, “And into whatsoever city or town you shall go inquire in it whoever is worthy, and there abide until you go thence. And when you come into a house, salute it. And if that house be worthy, let your peace come upon it, but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when you depart out of that house, shake the dust off your feet. Verily I say unto you, it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgement, than for that city.”
A recent television documentary stated that there were five sexually perverted cities together that appear to have been destroyed at the same time frame as Sodom and Gomorrah. Please note that the time of this statement by Jesus most assuredly points out that there will be a judgement and consequences for rejecting Jesus’s teachings given by the apostles.
Jesus was tortured and died for our sins. But His resurrection empowered His Church and administered by His chosen leaders, to dispense the saving grace we need to enter heaven, which Jesus personally imparted to His Church. Jesus instructed the apostles in His requirements for behavior (baptism, commandments, requirements for worship and daily living) that make our lives fuller and our salvation possible. Along with the rules, He empowered the apostles to forgive sins, thus making eternal life obtainable rather than eternal death with Satan. Jesus gives the path to His Father’s kingdom, the recipe for grateful living and a peaceful death leading to Paradise. What more could we want?
For the past 15 years, John Larkins has evangelized on the street, door-to-door, in tent revivals and in church situations. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.