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To Being a Sword

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{the reason for the season}

to bring a sword

matthew 10:34-42

The expectations of Jesus’ first disciples were that as He was Messiah He would bring peace

and freedom to Israel. Similar expectations are voiced each Christmas time as we sing “Peace

on earth, goodwill to men.” But Jesus said otherwise!

I. Jesus evaluates the human condition (Mt. 9:35 - 38)

A. Pervasive physical trauma – “every kind of disease”

B. Deep psychological pain – “harrassed and helpless”

C. Profound spiritual need – “like sheep without a shepherd”

D. Great eternal danger – “the harvest” (see Rev. 14:14–20)

II. Jesus outlines the divine strategy (Mt. 9:37–10: 4)

A. Moved with compassion He ministered by teaching, preaching and healing.

B. He alerted His disciples and instructed them to pray specifically.

1. A shortage of workers.

2. “The Lord who is harvesting” (lit.)

3. A desire that He will “send out workers”

C. He called, authorized, empowered and commissioned His apostles.

III. Jesus briefed His apostles about their mission (Mt. 10:5–42)

A. Commission details – focus, accomodation, remuneration,

challenge (vss. 5-16)

B. Warnings about difficulties – opposition, betrayal, persecution (vss.17-31)

C. Words of encouragement:

IV. Jesus’ words applied to contemporary Christians

A. Be ready to be branded a bigot for believing in truth and error.

B. Be aware that tolerance has been redefined.

C. Be careful you don’t give offense even if your testimony does.

D. Be wise enough to know we’re in a cosmic struggle not a

pleasant rose garden.

Next week: Yet another reason for the season!

1. Don’t worry. (vs. 19)

2. Don’t quit. (vs. 22)

3. Don’t be surprised. (vs. 24)

4. Don’t be afraid. (vs. 26)

5. Don’t forget. (vs. 29)

6. “Do not suppose I have

come to bring peace...but a

sword.” (vs. 34)

7. Don’t avoid the cross. (35f)

8. Don’t be downhearted. (40f)

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