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Pastor Scott L. Harris
Grace Bible Church, NY
February 17, 2008
The Messiah’s Disciples
What sort of person does it take to follow Jesus? What characteristics do you need to have in order to accomplish great things for the cause of Christ? We will find out this morning was we look at the men Jesus chose to be His closest companions and the instructions He gave them for ministry.
Matthew 9:35 tells us that Jesus was going about in every city and village of Galilee teaching in the synagogues, proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every kind of disease and every kind of sickness among the people. We saw that in detail a couple of weeks ago in studying Jesus’ miracles by which He demonstrated His authority over disease, nature, demons, sin and death (Matthew 8 & 9). Those miracles proved His deity and backed up His message to “Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven was at hand.” (See: The Messiah’s Miracles)
At the end of Matthew 9 we see the compassion of Jesus upon the multitudes who were “distressed and downcast like sheep without a shepherd” (vs 36). In Matthew 9:37 Jesus calls on his disciples to also see the condition of the multitudes and their need telling them the “harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few,” and to “beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into the harvest.” He wanted them to also have compassion and have a first response of prayer. In chapter 10 he calls them to more direct involvement.
Calling the Twelve – Matthew 10:1-4
“And having summoned His twelve disciples, He gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every kind of disease and every kind of sickness. Now the names of the twelve apostles are these: The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; and James the son of Zebedee and John his brother; Philip and Bartholmew; Thomas and Matthew the tax-gatherer; James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; Simon the Zealot, and Judas Iscariot, the one who betrayed Him.”
The calling of these particular men by Jesus was not done haphazardly. Luke 6:12 records that in preparation for selecting this group of disciples that Jesus “went off to the mountain to pray, and He spent the whole night in prayer to God. And when day came, He called His disciples to Him; and chose twelve of them, whom He also named as apostles.”
The harvest is plentiful and Jesus needs more workers. He commissions these twelve men as His co-workers in the harvest, and He gives them His authority to carry out the work as His apostles. The word “apostle” specifically refers to someone sent with the authority of the sender. That is how they differ from the larger group of disciples from which they were called. A disciple is simply a “learner,” a “student.” A disciple is someone who attaches himself to a teacher in order to learn from and become like that teacher (Luke 6:40). An apostle carries the authority to act in behalf of the one that sent him. It is similar to the idea of an ambassador that represents one nation to another. The ambassador himself has no authority, but he carries the authority of the nation that sent him as its representative.
Notice in verse 1 that Jesus gives them authority over unclean spirits (i.e. demons) that they might cast them out as well as authority to heal every kind of disease and sickness. Jesus had the authority – the power and right – over these things and He extends that authority to His apostles.
Who were these men that Jesus would entrust them to represent Him with such authority? You might think they must have been extra-ordinary men of high standing, integrity, will and courage. Jesus had spent all night praying about the decision, so we would think He picked only the best. Yet, we find that these men were ordinary people like you and me. In fact, they end up showing that they often lacked faith, courage, commitment, power, spiritual understanding and humility. Most churches might even pass them over as potential leaders. They certainly would not pass the psychological profile used by some organizations to determine who will or will not make it.
The fact that these were ordinary men is the very point I want to make this morning. From 1 Corinthians 1:26-29 we know that God’s choice is “not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble; But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong, and the base things of the world and the despised, God has chosen, the things that are not, that He might nullify the things that are, that no man should boast in His presence.” It is not the ability of the man or the woman, but the ability of God that makes the difference. These same men are later described in Acts 17:6 as those who “upset (or turned upside down) the world.”
The Twelve (See: The Twelve Disciples).
Let me give you a brief description of these men and how the Lord changed them into useful service. That should be an encouragement that God can also use us.
Simon was a bold, brash, boastful and impatient fisherman. He often got himself in trouble for speaking before thinking. He was a risk taker that knew both its blessings and troubles. Simon boasted that he would never forsake Jesus, yet a short time later fear gripped his heart so much that he was denying Christ to even a servant girl. Yet the Lord turned such a man into humble Peter the Apostle, a fisher of men. A man so bold he publicly confronted the Jewish religious leaders with their guilt in crucifying Christ, and he was used to take the gospel to the Gentiles and break down the wall between Jew and Gentile. The change was due to the Holy Spirit and submission to the Lord.
Andrew was Simon Peter’s more reserved brother. He was inquisitive and demonstrated a simple faith. He was characterized by humility, openness and lack of prejudice. He is the model for all Christians who labor quietly in humble places and positions.
James and John were brothers that were characterized early on as being passionate, zealous, aggressive and somewhat vengeful. Jesus even gave them the nickname of “boanerges,” which means “sons of thunder.” At times they selfishly sought the positions of power and prominence. Jesus tempered and trained James & John. James became the first martyr among the apostles while John was the last to die, and the only one to die of natural causes. John’s temper was changed so much that he became known as the beloved apostle. The Holy Spirit can do the same in your life, but you have to yield your temperament to Him.
Philip was a diligent student of the Old Testament. He had a practical, analytical mind which is generally a virtue, but something that hindered him from spiritual discernment at times. He was also somewhat reserved to do things on his own. Philip’s faith increased over the years. Tradition tells us that also became a martyr.
Bartholomew, also known as Nathanael, was also a student of the Old Testament and earnestly sought after God’s truth and the coming of Messiah. However, Bartholomew was affected by prejudice and was pessimistic, but God can use a pessimist who is not deceitful, hypocritical or phony.
Thomas was also pessimistic. We often call him “doubting Thomas” because he said he would not believe the Lord was raised from the dead until he saw and touched Him. Yet he also was unequaled in his commitment to Jesus and was ready to die with Him if that was needed. Thomas totally believed in Jesus and wanted to be with Him. His pessimism was over come by his commitment to seeking and finding the truth. “Doubting” Thomas responded to Jesus, “My Lord and My God.” Tradition holds that he took the gospel to India where the Mar Thoma church in southwest India traces its origin to him.
Matthew, also called Levi, had been a tax collector and therefore considered to be a traitor to his nation and worse than thieves and prostitutes. Jesus changed him into the apostle whose primary ministry was to the Jewish nation. Your past is no hindrance to what God can do with you!
James the son of Alphaeus, Thaddaeus (also called Judas, son of James) and Simon the Zealot join with the Old Testament saints of whom little is known here on Earth but are well known in heaven (see Hebrews 11:36-39). You may feel you are obscure and unimportant, but God can and will use you, if you will let Him. God will use those who seek Him regardless of personal characteristics or prominence.
The last apostle is Judas Iscariot. He was a covetous man controlled by self desire. Judas is the greatest tragedy of humanity ever, for he lived with Jesus for 3 years, yet still turned his back on Him. He serves as a warning. God was still able to use him, but it was as a vessel of wrath instead of a vessel of mercy (Romans 9:22,23). You don’t want to be like him.
The ability to serve God is not based on your abilities, but on God’s ability. He can change you, equip you and empower to serve Him, but you have to be willing to follow and yield yourself to the Holy Spirit just like the Apostles did. They were ordinary men who accomplished extra-ordinary things because they served the living God. What can God do through you? What will you let Him do?
Instructions for Ministry – Matthew 10:5-15 (See: Instructions for Ministry).
Jesus gave specific instructions to the twelve before He sent them out. From these instructions we gain some principles of ministry that apply to us, though we must be careful not to apply the specific instructions to ourselves since they were only for them at a particular point in time.
A Focused Ministry is the first principle. “These twelve Jesus sent out after instructing them, “Do not go in the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter any city of the Samaritans; but rather go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel” (Matthew 10:5,6). No one can do everything there is to do, and if there is no focus to your ministry, then it will be doomed. Jesus started the apostles off with a focused ministry to the Jews. Some of them would later have a ministry focused on Gentiles, but they would start with God’s plan of to the Jew first, then the Gentile (Romans 1:16).
A Clear Message is the next principle. “And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand'” (Matthew 10:7). The gospel is not difficult, but it has become confused by those that mix it with other things. It could be secondary issues such as tradition and liturgy. It can also be with more serious issues such false teaching and heresy, or psychology and philosophy, or principles from false religions and theological error. It could also be the contrast between what we say and how we live. We have the message of eternal life through faith in the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ who died on the cross as the substitute payment for our sin. Let us make sure that we keep the message clear.
A Life of Ministry is the next principle and it is found in Matthew 10:8, “heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons; freely you received, freely give.” These same signs were part of the confirmation that Jesus was the Messiah (cf. Mark 11:4,5) and they also confirmed that the apostles were sent by Jesus (see 2 Corinthians 12:12). The specific instructions are to the Apostles only and not all Christians. No believer today manifests these apostolic credentials.
While we cannot minister in the same miraculous manner as the Apostles did then, we do need to follow the principle of living a life of ministry. Jesus instructed them, “freely you received, freely give.” All that you have, your spiritual gifts, your natural talents, even the things you own, have come because of God’s grace to you. You are not to be stingy in using what you have to serve the Lord by serving others. You are to serve freely.
A Trusting Heart is the next principle. Jesus told them in Matthew 10:9, “Do not acquire gold, or silver, or copper for your money belts, or a bag for your journey, or even two tunics, or sandals, or a staff; for the worker is worthy of his support.” This was part of their training to see that God would meet their needs. They were not to take any money along – gold, silver or copper. They were not to take extra clothes, shoes or even a staff, so no suitcases. They were not even to take a bag or sack in which they would have food for the journey. They would earn their living as they ministered. This command was specific for the apostles on this training exercise, for later Jesus would instruct them to take those very things (see Luke 22:25-26). At this time Jesus was teaching them to trust Him. We can also trust Him to provide for our needs as we seek first His kingdom and righteousness (Matthew 6:33).
A Concentration on Those Who Respond is the next principle. “And into whatever city or village you enter, inquire who is worthy in it; and abide there until you go away. And as you enter the house, give it your greeting. And if the house is worthy, let your greeting of peace come upon it” (Matthew 10:11-13). The principle is that we need to concentrate our efforts on those who respond to the message of the gospel for they are the ones “worthy” of your greeting and peace. While we are to “preach the gospel to all creation” (Mark 16:15), we cannot fulfill the Lord’s commission in Matthew 28:19 to make disciples if we do not make those who respond to the message our priority. Related to this is the next principle.
A Departure from Those Who Do Not Listen. “but if it is not worthy, let your greeting of peace return to you. And whoever does not receive you, nor heed your words, as you go out of that house or that city, shake off the dust of your feet. Truly I say to you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgement, than for that city” (Matthew 10:14-15). We make diligent effort to win the lost, but when they clearly reject the message, then we must come to understand that they are the hogs and dogs the Lord was speaking about in Matthew 7:6. We are not to give what is holy to them. We are not to cast our pearls before them. It is time to move on and leave them in their condemned state. The gospel is too precious and there are too many that have not heard to waste time on those that reject it.
Warnings – Matthew 10:16-23 (See: Sheep Among Wolves).
Jesus also gave His apostles clear warnings about the dangers and hardships that awaited them. “Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; therefore be shrewd as serpents, and innocent as doves” (Matthew 10:16). This is a very graphic description of the rejection that they would receive at the hands of the world while at the same time describing the nature of the relationship they were to have with Christ. They, like sheep, would be dependent upon their shepherd, the Lord Jesus Christ. They would be in danger from several types of wolves that would like to devour them. They would have to think wisely which is described here as a serpent because they were considered very crafty, smart, cunning and cautious animals. They would also have to be as “innocent as doves” which speaks of being pure and true to God’s word and His will. The two combined together give us the idea of being wise with a sanctified common sense in saying the right thing at the right time and place and discovering the best means to achieve the highest goal. This is a characteristic that is to be developed by every Christian. Colossians 4:5 tells us to, “Conduct yourselves with wisdom toward outsiders, making the most of the opportunity.”
There were four types of wolves they would face. These include those in religion, government, family and society.
Wolves in Religion
(Matthew 10:17) “But beware of men; for they will deliver you up to the courts, and scourge you in their synagogues.” The courts spoken of here are the Jewish courts Someone accused of breaking the Mosaic law or a rabbinic tradition would be brought before judges at these courts who would then decide the case, determine the sentence and deliver the punishment.
Throughout history religion has persecuted true Christianity. Judaism was the major persecutor up until the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D. Then the pagan religions took over and they continue to persecute in any area of the world where they are strong (Africa). Other religions such as Hinduism (Nepal, India) and Islam (Middle-East; Africa, Asia) continue to persecute in the present time. Even religions that are supposedly “Christian” have persecuted believes. The majority of the cases cited in Foxes Book Of Martyrs are those killed by the Roman Catholic church during the counter reformation (1500’s). We are to beware of the wolves in religions.
Wolves in Government
(Matthew 10:18-20) “and you shall even be brought before governors and kings for My sake, as a testimony to them and to the Gentiles. But when they deliver you up, do not become anxious about how or what you will speak; for it shall be given you in that hour what you are to speak. for it is not you who speak, but it is the Spirit of your Father who speaks in you.”
Persecution by the State comes because the world hates Christ. Dictatorial States cannot tolerate Christians having a higher allegiance to Jesus than themselves and so they hate Christ and his followers. In modern times atheistic communism has murdered millions of Christians. Other governments strive to please their people, and sinful people are usually offended by the righteous lives of believers. The result is that they join in the persecution. We also need to recognize that there are demonic influences in government.
While the promise here of being given the words to speak is specific to the apostles, we find that the Holy Spirit in His graciousness continues to supply believers with what to say when called upon to give testimony in the midst of persecution.
Wolves in the Family
(Matthew 10:21) “And brother will deliver up brother to death, and a father his child; and children will rise up against parents, and cause them to be put to death.” The strength of the hatred people have for God is demonstrated when they turn against even those for which there should be natural bonds of love and affection. This has occurred throughout history and will continue into the future.
Wolves in Society
(Matthew 10:22) “And you will be hated by all on account of My name, but it is the one who has endured to the end who will be saved.” This does not mean that every person will hate you, but that all people in general will hate you. There are people from every race, every class, every nationality that hate God and anyone that reflects Him.
This idea of enduring to the end is seen throughout the New Testament (Matthew 24:13; Romans 3:14; Colossians 1:21-23; Hebrews 2:1-3; 3:14; 2 Peter 1:10). We call it the doctrine of the perseverance of the saints. It is not that salvation comes by persevering, but that those that are saved will persevere thus demonstrating their salvation. But since it is the Good Shepherd that is with us in the midst of the wolves, then the outcome is sure. Those that are His sheep will not be lost.
The Defense & Hope (Matthew 10:23) against these wolves is simple. “But whenever they persecute you in this city, flee to the next.” Just as we are not to purposely provoke animosity and ridicule, we are not to stay in the midst of persecution if it is possible to leave.
Encouragement For Ministry – Matthew 10:24-33 (See: Confidence for Disciples).
Jesus also encouraged the apostles so that they would have confidence to carry out the ministries to which Jesus had sent them.
Confidence in the Purpose of Life is given in Matthew 10:24-25, “A disciple is not above his teacher, nor a slave above his master. It is enough for the disciple that he become as his teacher, and the slave as his master.” A disciple learns from and takes on the qualities of his teacher (Luke 6:4), so it is that the purpose of a Christian’s life is to become like Jesus Christ (See Romans 8:29).
That also means that since they made false accusations against Jesus even calling Him Beelzebul (a synonym for Satan), so they will falsely accuse His disciples. But even so, they could also have Confidence in Being Used by the Lord –
Matthew 10:26,27, “Therefore do not fear them, for there is nothing covered that will not be revealed, and hidden that will not be known. What I tell you in the darkness, speak in the light; and what you hear whispered in your ear, proclaim upon the housetops.” The opposition would not overcome them. They would proclaim all the things Jesus was teaching them.
That does not mean it would not be dangerous or frightening. When they did face such things, they could have Confidence in the midst of Persecution – Matthew 10:28, “And do not fear those who kill the body, but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” While men may harm us physically or even kill us, they cannot harm the soul. Not even Satan can do that. Therefore we need not fear them since we live for a purpose beyond this life. The only one that has power over both the body and the soul is God. He is the one who judges and condemns sinful men, Satan and the fallen angels to Hell (Revelation 20:10-15), therefore the unsaved should fear God. However, since there is no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1), we can also have Confidence in God’s Intimate Care for Us
Matthew 10:29.30 explains, “Are not two sparrows sold for a cent? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Therefore do not fear; you are of more value than many sparrows.” Sparrows were very common and could be purchased for an asserion, about 1/16 of a common laborer’s daily wage. If God takes note of such mundane things as sparrows and the number of hairs on your head, then we can trust Him to care about the more important matters. We need not fear.
Christians can have Confidence When We Stand Before God – Matthew 10:32, “Everyone therefore who shall confess Me before men, I will also confess him before My Father who is in heaven.” A true Christian willingly affirms his beliefs about God and Jesus Christ even if others react negatively toward him because of it. What we believe will be demonstrated by what we say and do. Our confession of Christ assures us of His affirmation of us before the Father.
However, the opposite is also true, and so Jesus warns in Matthew 10:33, “But whoever shall deny Me before men, I will also deny him before My Father who is in heaven.” The grammar and context specifically indicates Jesus is talking about false disciples who fear men more than God and deny Jesus in order to gain favor with men, or even fail to profess Jesus in order not to incur the disfavor of men. This is not talking about a singular incident, but someone who is characterized by it.
A True Disciple’s Value of Christ – Matthew 10:34-39 (See: Who is a Disciple?).
There are certain characteristics in those that are true disciples of Jesus Christ. The first is that they value Jesus Christ more than anything else. This will be practically tested by the division that Jesus brings.
True disciples value Christ more than family. Jesus said in Matthew 10:34-37 “Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I came to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a man’s enemies will be the members of his household. He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me; and he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me.”
While family should naturally be the closest of human relationships, belief in Jesus Christ can set family members against one another. That opposition could be as mild as ridicule and escalate to estrangement and even martyrdom. I remember a young Jewish woman whose parents held a funeral for her and would not speak to her. When she would call them they would say, “we do not have a daughter by that name anymore, she has died.” In Islamic families your life may be threatened for conversion to Christ. Yet, for true disciples their love for Jesus is greater than the threats and the losses, and so they are compelled to confess Him to others. Those who continually fail to confess Jesus to their family show a greater fear of man than God which is a hallmark of a false faith. Jesus will not confess them before God the father.
True disciples value Jesus more than themselves. Jesus said in Matthew 10:38,39, “And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. He who has found his life shall lose it, and he who has lost his life for My sake shall find it.” The reference to taking a cross is not to a symbolic piece of jewelry or some trial or hardship in life. It is a reference to the instrument of execution used by the Romans. It refers to death. If you are going to be a true disciple of Jesus you must be as Romans 12:1 puts it, a living sacrifice for Christ. Your life belongs to Jesus Christ and is no longer your own. Those who do this find purpose in this life and eternal life in Christ. Those who do not will find vanity in this life and eternal separation from God in the life to come. Jim Elliot, the martyred missionary to the Auca Indians in South America, said it so well in his diary, “He is no fool who gives up what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.” You cannot keep your life, and if you try, you will lose it. Or you can lose your life as a living sacrifice for Christ and gain eternal life that cannot be lost.
Rewards – Matthew 10:40-42
The final instruction Jesus gave them concerned rewards. “He who receives you receives Me, and he who receives Me receives Him who sent Me. 41 “He who receives a prophet in [the] name of a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward; and he who receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward. 42 “And whoever in the name of a disciple gives to one of these little ones even a cup of cold water to drink, truly I say to you he shall not lose his reward.”
To summarize, any service done to any of God’s people in Jesus’ name amounts to service to Him and will be rewarded. We share in the reward of those we help, and those who help us share in our reward. True disciples gain reward.
Many people claim to be Christians, but the proof is in the pudding. A person who has truly put their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ alone for the forgiveness of sin based on His substitutionary atonement on the cross will demonstrate the hallmarks of a true disciple of Jesus Christ. They may fail at times in each of these areas, but their lives will be generally marked by them, and when they do fail, they will be repentant and striving to be like Christ. They will have humility in becoming like the master. They will fear God more than man. They will confess Jesus publicly. They will value Christ more than family and even one’s own life. They will receiving a disciple’s blessings. Are you a disciple of Jesus Christ? If not, you can be by being born again. Talk with me or one of our church leaders today and let us show you how. (See: The Necessity of Spiritual Birth)
Sermon Notes – 2/17/2008 A.M.
The Messiah’s Disciples – Matthew 10
Jesus was ________, proclaiming the gospel, and healing every kind of disease and sickness (Matthew 9:35)
Jesus had __________ upon the multitudes (Matthew 9:36)
Jesus calls on his disciples to recognize the need and ________ (Matthew 9:37)
Calling the Twelve – Matthew 10:1-4
After a night of prayer, Jesus called 12 men to be ________ out of a larger group of _________ (Luke 6:12)
An apostle is someone sent with the __________ of the sender
A disciple is a “______” who attaches himself to a teacher in order to _____ from & become like him / her
Jesus gives His Apostles the _________ to work the same kinds of miracles as He did (Matthew 10:1)
Jesus chose ________ men who had ________ strengths and weaknesses (1 Corinthians 1:26-29).
Simon was a bold, brash, _______, impatient and occasionally _______. He became bold, ________ Peter
Andrew was inquisitive with a simple _____and characterized by _______, openness and lack of prejudice
James & John were brothers characterized as being ________, zealous, aggressive and somewhat vengeful
James became the first apostolic ________. John became the “_________ apostle”
Philip was a diligent student with a practical, analytical mind, but lacking in _________ discernment
Bartholomew (Nathanael) was a ______seeker, but somewhat prejudice & pessimistic, but not hypocritical
Thomas was ________________ but overcame that by commitment to ______ and loyalty
Matthew (Levi) had been a tax collector (& therefore considered to be a _________ to his nation)
Little is recorded on ______ about James the son of Alphaeus, Thaddaeus (Judas) and Simon Zealot
Judas Iscariot was ______and controlled by self desire. God used him as a vessel of _______ (Romans 9:22)
God will accomplish extra-ordinary things using ___________ people who will serve Him.
Instructions for Ministry – Matthew 10:5-15
A ___________ Ministry (10:5,6) No one can do _________ there is to do. Narrow your focus
A _________ Message (10:7) – Don’t ________ the gospel with secondary issues, error or heresy
A Life of _________(10:8) – All that you are and have is from God, ___________ with others.
A _____________ Heart (10:9) – Learn to _______ God to _________ for your needs (Matthew 6:33)
A Concentration on Those Who __________ (10:11-13) – We are to make ___________ (Matthew 28:18-20)
A __________ from Those Who Do Not Listen (10:14-15) – Move on when they clearly ______the gospel
Warnings – Matthew 10:16-23
Wolves in ________ (10:17) – False religions, cults & false Christianity have always __________ believers
Wolves in _________ (10:18-20) – Governments ___________ those having a higher allegiance to Jesus
Wolves in the _________ (10:21) – Strong _______for God can cause family members to turn on believers
Wolves in Society (10:22) – _________ for Christians occurs in every race, class and nationality
Perseverance does not save, but those who are saved will ___________
The Defense & Hope (10:23) – We are not to ______ in the midst of persecution if it is possible to ______
Encouragement For Ministry – Matthew 10:24-33
Confidence in the ________of Life (10:24-25) – The purpose of a Christian’s life is to become like ______
Confidence in Being ______by the Lord (10:26,27) – Our Lord’s message will be _____despite opposition
Confidence in the Midst of ____________(10:28) – Neither men nor Satan can harm our _________
Confidence in God’s Intimate _______for Us (10:29,30) – God ______for you more than mundane things
Confidence When We __________God (10:32,33) – What we believe we demonstrate by ______& ______
A True Disciple’s Value of Christ – Matthew 10:34-39
More than _________(10:34-37) – Opposition may range from ________ to estrangement to __________
Love for Jesus is ________than the threats & danger. Continued failure to confess shows a _____faith
More than _________ (10:38,39) – The cross refers to ______- becoming a living ________(Romans 12:1)
Rewards (10:40-42) – _______done to God’s people in Jesus’ name is service to Him & will be _________
– The claim to be a follower of Jesus is proved by ____________
Christians are not perfect, but they do __________ and strive to be like Jesus Christ
Parents, you are responsible to apply God’s Word to your children’s lives. Here is some help. Young Children – draw a picture about something you hear during the sermon. Explain your picture(s) to your parents at lunch. Older Children – Do one or more of the following: 1) Write down all the verses mentioned in the sermon and look them up later. 2) Count how many times “Jesus” or “Christ” are used in the sermon. Talk with your parents about what it means to be a disciple – a follower of Christ.
THINK ABOUT IT!
Questions to consider in discussing the sermon with others. What characteristics do you need to have in order to accomplish great things for the cause of Christ? What ministries had Jesus been doing prior to choosing the 12 apostles. Jesus had compassion for the multitudes – how did he develop that compassion in His disciples and prod them to respond to the needs? What is the difference between a disciple and an apostle? Why are there no apostles living in our time? What kind of men were the Apostles? Which of the 12 apostles are you most like? Why? How can God use you in His service? Why did Jesus choose Judas Iscariot and why is he a warning? How can you distinguish whether an instruction or promise is specific to the apostles or is true for us as well? Six principles arise from Jesus’ instructions to the Apostles in Matthew 10:5-15. Describe the meaning and application of each of them: A Focused Ministry; A Clear Message; A Life of Ministry; A Trusting Heart; A Concentration on Those Who Respond; and A Departure from Those Who Do Not Listen. Jesus gave four warnings in Matthew 10:16-23. Describe each of them and how you might apply them in your own life: Wolves in Religion; Wolves in Government; Wolves in the Family; and Wolves in Society. What is your defense and hope against them? Which is the most present danger to you? Jesus encouraged the Apostles in Matthew 10:24-33 to have confidence as they went out to minister. What is the purpose of the Christian’s life and what confidence can there be that it will be fulfilled? How can you be confident even when being persecuted? How do you know that God cares for you? How do you know that Jesus will confess you before the Father? A true disciple of Christ must value Jesus more than family or even their own life. How is that demonstrated in your own family? In your own life? What does it mean to be a living sacrifice? What rewards are promised to the believer? How do you prove you are a Christian?
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