In Matthew chapter ten, Jesus sends out His twelve disciples to begin their ministry in His Name. He gives them very specific instructions along with warnings, advice, and encouragement for the dangerous road ahead of them. The words Jesus spoke to them are just as relevant and important in the perilous times we find ourselves living in, and they give us great hope and courage to press on despite the dangers.
“He called his twelve disciples to him and gave them authority to drive out evil spirits and to heal every disease and sickness.”
In verse 17, Jesus begins warning His disciples to be on their guard against men and He foretells what will happen to them. It must have been very difficult to hear and I’m sure the men were fearful of what they would suffer, but they kept following Jesus. They stood up courageously and refused to live in fear despite the violence of their time.
“Be on your guard against men; they will hand you over to the local councils and flog you in their synagogues. On my account you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. But when they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.”
“Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child; children will rebel against their parents and have them put to death. All men will hate you because of me, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved.”
Jesus was sending His disciples out into a very violent world that hated them, and He wanted to brace them for what was coming. Jesus continues with an encouragement and exhortation to live without fear despite the threats they faced. The Lord’s words still hold true for us in the violent times we live in, and we find great comfort in His truth.
“So do not be afraid of them. There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known. What I tell you in the dark, speak in the daylight; what is whispered in your ear, proclaim from the roofs. Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So do not be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.”
Jesus does not want us to be afraid. We live in a world of constant threats, but we do not need to be afraid of those that kill the body. If you believe in Jesus, then your soul is safe and secure! Jesus wanted His disciples to remember that truth as He sent them out like sheep among wolves. He wants us to remember it too! Do not fear man, fear the Lord!
“Fear of man will prove to
be a snare,
but whoever trusts in the
Lord is kept safe.”
Jesus is the lover of our souls and nothing can snatch us out of His hand! No matter what happens in this world, remember that Jesus does not want us to be afraid. There is great hope in Jesus! He is the greatest hope of all mankind! May we always be able to say, the Lord is our helper; we will not be afraid!
“I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. I and the Father are one.”
Jesus speaking in John 10:28-30
Grace and peace to you all in the Name of Jesus!
“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”