We are the sent-out ones

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We are the sent-out ones        

Mark 6:7-9 “And He called the twelve to Himself, and began to send them out two by two, and gave them power over unclean spirits. He commanded them to take nothing for the journey except a staff-no bag, no bread, no copper in their money belts-but to wear sandals, and not put on two tunics.” Maxwell Leadership Bible

Extra Reading: Mark 6:7-13

It is interesting to note that from verse 7 Mark describes the first time that Jesus sent the twelve disciples out on their own. From this experience the disciples learned that even when Jesus was not with them, they had His authority and power over evil spirits and every kind of sickness (Matthew 10:1, 8; Luke 9:1). Mark explains that Jesus sent them out two by two. I want to emphasize that whenever possible, it is good for preachers and Christian workers to travel in pairs (Luke 10:1; Acts 13:2-3; 15:40).  Jesus probably did this to allow them to encourage each other as they serve people. From verses 8 and 9 the disciples also learned that God would provide all their needs. Jesus told them to take no bread, no bag, and no money (see Matthew 10:9-10). Those whom they preached to and healed should give them their food and lodging. According to Matthew 10:10, Jesus said that the worker is worth his keep (see 1 Corinthians 9:14; 1 Timothy 5:18). According to Mark’s account the disciples were allowed to take a staff (v.8) and sandals (v.9). But according to Matthew 10:10, Jesus ordered His disciples not to take staff and sandals. Quite a number of Bible scholars think that Jesus gave different instructions for different kinds of journey. Sandals and staff would be necessary for long, rocky, mountainous trails. Jesus’ meaning was that the disciples should take only what was necessary. They were to depend on God for everything else.

Verse 10 states that when the disciples entered a town, they first were to find someone worthy (Matthew 10:11); that is, they were to find someone upright and God-fearing who would accept their message and give them hospitality. When they found such a person, they were to stay at his home until they left that town. They were not to move from one house to another looking for more convenient accommodations, or else their first host might be offended. According to Matthew 10:12-13, they were to give the deserving home their greeting; that is, they were to pronounce the benediction of peace upon that home. But if the home was not deserving, they were to take back the blessing they had spoken. On such a house God’s peace would not rest (see Luke 10:5-7).  From the following verses we learn that any home or town that did not accept the disciples’ message and did not offer them hospitality was “unworthy” or “undeserving”. The disciples were to shake the dust of such a home or town off their feet. This was a sign of judgment against that unworthy place (Acts 13:51). According to Matthew 10:15, such a town will receive greater punishment than did the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah which God destroyed with burning sulphur (Genesis 19:1-29). The people of Sodom and Gomorrah had mistreated two angels sent by God. But the towns that rejected Christ’s disciples rejected Christ Himself, God’s Son. Therefore, their punishment will be greater (see Luke 10:8-12).

Prayer: Oh God, help us to heed Your call to preach the gospel all over the world. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen!

Rev. Samuel N. Modise  

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