Matthew 10:31 Your Value

“So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” Matthew 10:31

Jesus just finished telling the disciples that they would be persecuted and hated. He also tells them not to be afraid of those in the world, that they are to go and speak out loud what God has given them to speak.

You are in the same place as the disciples if you are following Jesus. You are to tell everyone the gospel message of Jesus. In verse 28, Jesus states that you are not to be afraid of those who can only kill the body and not the soul. Only God can kill the soul. You are only to fear God.

In fearing God, though, you do not have to fear God is going to destroy you if you are following Jesus. You have great value.

To describe this value, Jesus talks about two sparrows being sold for a penny. This means each sparrow is only worth a penny. A penny has very little value in the eyes of the world. In fact how many people will drop a penny on the ground and not pick it up? Or pass one by that is on the ground.

This gives the sparrow very little value, yet, Jesus says not one of them falls dead without God’s permission. God, the Father, protects even those little worthless sparrows.

Jesus tells you not to be afraid because you are worth many sparrows. How much is the life of a man valuable? How much would you give to keep your life? Life is extremely valuable to you. Would you give up your life for a given amount of money? Would you give up your child for money? Most people will not.

God gave up His Son for you. Jesus gave up His life for you. They thought you were extremely valuable. You were worth the extremely high price.

If you have something of extreme high value, you will take extreme good care of it. If you are that valuable to God, don’t you think God will take care of you? God will take care of you.

The thing that is most important is your soul. The things of this world and your life in this world will come to an end. Your soul will never end.

Pass the salvation message of Jesus to everyone you meet. Do not fear what they will say or do. Trust God to take care of you. The most the world will do is kill your body, they cannot destroy your soul or take you from God.

I pray that God will strengthen you to be His witness; that God will reveal to you how valuable you are to Him; that God will show you opportunities to be His witness; that God will build His kingdom through you; and that you will know His peace and protection.

Matthew 10:22 You Will Be Hated

“You will be hated by everyone because of me, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved.” Matthew 10:22

Throughout the gospels Jesus talks about loving everyone, including your enemies. He also mentions that you are to live your life so well they cannot find anything true against you. Now, He tells you that you will be hated.

If you are living your life so well, why would people hate you? It is because you are following Jesus.

Again why would people hate Jesus, since He is showing perfect love? It is because He also reveals their sinful lives.

No one likes to be told that they are doing things the wrong way, or that they are going to be punished for eternity. Most people think that overall they are a good person. They do not like the idea of them being bad to where they are separated from God.

As you are fully living for and following Jesus, people will hate you. Their hatred is because of Jesus. Jesus had said that if they hated Him, they will hate you.

Take a look at your life. Do you have people in your life that are angry with you because of the way you follow Jesus? Do people get tired of hearing you talk about God? Are people upset with you because you will not go fishing with them on Sundays in order for you to go to church?

If the world loves you, be careful. Make sure you are following Jesus and doing everything He is telling you to do. Give yourself one hundred percent to God and stand firm for Him.

Jesus finished this verse with stating that whoever stands firm to the end will be saved. Do not give in to the pressures of the world. Do not change to have the world like you. Do not compromise God’s standards and will to alleviate the hatred. In the end Jesus will save you.

Remember that Jesus followed God perfectly, then was killed for it. Afterward God raised Him from the dead. God will do the same for you. Trust Him.

I pray that God will strengthen you to follow Him in every area of your life; that you will stand firm in God’s ways; that you will be God’s witness everywhere you go; that you will speak God’s truth and love to everyone; and that God will draw many to Jesus through you.

Matthew 10:19-20 What to Expect

“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.” Matthew 10:19-20

As Jesus sends out the disciples to be His witness He tells them something that is a bit disturbing. He tells them that they will be arrested. It is not “if you are arrested”, but “when you are arrested”.

In America, and many other countries in the world, a believer in Jesus has the freedom to be His witness publicly. But, just like many other countries, that freedom is slowly being taken away.

Throughout the Bible it talks about how closer to the end most people will work against God. Satan will do more and more to stop all believers from being His witness. Hatred against Christians will rise more and more. The time will come when you will be arrested for being His witness.

Already in America people can get in trouble with the law for speaking out against various sinful practices that God and the Bible condemn. In public schools, teachers cannot talk to a student about their belief in Jesus, unless the student starts the conversation first. More and more examples of this is occurring in America and the rest of the world.

When you are arrested, Jesus states not to worry about what to say. You are to be led by His Holy Spirit in what to say. If you try to argue for your rights in your own words, you will fail. The world does not care about your rights, because you are offending them with the message of Jesus.

You are to lean on the Holy Spirit to guide you and give you the words to speak. As you speak, you will continue to be His witness in places that you could not witness, unless you were arrested. Maybe, like Joseph, you need to be in prison to touch someone’s life there.

Do not be surprised at the trouble that is coming against Christians. Allow God to use you to be His witness. Do not be afraid, but trust God. Jesus has been there and done that, He knows what to say and do in every situation.

I pray that God will give you strength to be His witness; that God will give you His peace that He is in control; that God will fill you with His Holy Spirit; that God will give you the words to speak; and that God will use you to build His kingdom daily.

Matthew 10:16 Sheep Among Wolves

“I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves.” Matthew 10:16

Jesus is giving a few instructions to the disciples as He is sending them out to be a witness. He talks about going just among those in Israel, not to take extra money or food, and only go to those who will listen. Now He tells them to be like sheep among wolves.

Sheep are a very calm type of animal. They do not go around harming anything. Wolves love to eat sheep and will seek them out for easy food.

Then Jesus tells them to be as shrewd as snakes. This is very interesting in the fact that the snake is usually representative of the devil.

Jesus is not saying take on the actions of the snake or the devil, but to be shrewd like the snake. Shrewd is another term for being wise or prudent.

Snakes are very shrewd in that they can sneak quietly up on its prey without being noticed. Some snakes even have a way of mesmerizing its prey till they strike.

As a believer you must be shrewd or wise in the same way. You are sent out into the world where the devil wants to destroy you. The world will fight against you and try to tear you down. You must use wisdom in getting into the enemy’s camp to release some prisoners for Jesus.

Just as a snake does not purposefully place itself in danger, do not do so yourself. Do not give the enemy a reason to strike you other than your stand for Jesus.

This comes to Jesus’ second part: be innocent as a dove. Doves are creatures known as a symbol of peace and innocence.

Live your life in such a way that nothing can be honestly brought against you. The enemy loves to use negative things in your life, do not let him have any. Let the only evidence against you be evidence of your following Jesus. Bring the news of God wanting to make peace with every person.

As you witness be both these things. Do not be harsh and condemning, but full of God’s love and mercy. Go out into the world and be God’s witness today. Go out as a sheep among wolves.

I pray today that God will give you the strength to be His witness; that God will give you the wisdom you need; that you will live a life of innocence; that God will make a way for you into the enemy’s camp; and that God will draw many to Jesus through you and build His kingdom.

Matthew 9:37-38 Workers Needed

“Then he said to his disciples, The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.” Matthew 9:37-38

In the United States, and many other countries around the world, there are many people who cannot find a job. Many employers have all the workers that are needed.

Some companies, such as a trucking company, can never seem to have enough workers. These companies are continually trying to hire more people. The main reason that they cannot get enough workers is that it is a difficult job. Physically it is not that difficult, but it does mean being on the road away from home most of the year. For this reason many do not want to do it, or quit shortly after starting it.

God has this same situation. Every person in the world is dying and God wants to save them. The world is God’s field. All the people are His harvest. God wants to bring in the entire harvest and miss none of it.

But, in order for God to do that, He must have workers. Just like the trucking companies need drivers to deliver the goods on time, so God needs workers to bring in the harvest.

In this passage, Jesus is telling you to ask God to send out workers to bring in that harvest. Those workers are you and every other believer. If a person follows Jesus, he is a worker. Every believer can bring in a part of the harvest.

Looking at the world, you may think that the harvest is too big and what can you do as just one person. As one person, you can bring in some of the harvest around you. That is more than if you did not bring in any.

Just as a journey begins with one small step, and eventually gets you to your destination with many small steps, so does bringing in the harvest little by little.

Bringing in this harvest is being a witness to what Jesus can do in the life of a person. Tell others what He has done for you and what He will do for them. People are looking for life. Are you willing to share it with them today? Remember Jesus said He is life.

I pray that today God will stir your heart to pray for more workers to be sent to God’s field; that God will reveal ways you can harvest His field; that you will have open doors to be His witness; and that God will bring in a great harvest through you.

Matthew 9:17 New Wine

“Neither do people pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the skins will burst; the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved.” Matthew 9:17

Many changes were coming to the followers of God when Jesus came on the scene. One of the largest changes was in the individuals themselves, they would now be able to have God’s Holy Spirit in them, instead of going to a high priest.

Under the Old Testament Law, only the high priest could stand directly before God. Jesus brought about the change that God would place His Holy Spirit in each believer individually. This required a change.

In this passage, Jesus talks about new wine must be put into new wineskins. If new wine is put in old skins, then the wine will destroy the old skin, and all will be lost.

God cannot be in sin. Man is full of sin. Jesus came to remove that sin from their lives making a way for God’s Spirit to come upon them. Your life must be changed in order for God to send His Holy Spirit into you.

If God was to put His Holy Spirit in you without a change in you, then you would die. You would not be able to handle the holiness of God. When you accept the sacrifice Jesus made for you by His death on the cross, He removes the sin in your life and makes you a new creation.

Remember that in Christ Jesus you are a new creation, the old has passed away and all things are new. You are now the new wineskin. God’s Holy Spirit is the new wine.

Allow Jesus to make you into a new wineskin, a new creation. Allow God to fill you with His Holy Spirit. God’s Spirit can guide you in the ways and will of God and keep you from sin.

I pray that today God will change you from the inside out; that God will fill you with His Holy Spirit; that you will allow yourself to be led by God’s Spirit; and that God will give you divine opportunities to share with others the changing that Jesus has done and the leading the Holy Spirit can do in your life and others.

Matthew 9:12-13 Calling Sinners

“On hearing this, Jesus said, It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. But go and learn what this means: I desire mercy, not sacrifice. For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” Matthew 9:12-13

Jesus had just called Matthew to follow Him. Matthew was a despised, hated tax-collector. There were very few people lower than him on the social status ladder. Along with calling Matthew, Jesus ate at his house with all of his ‘sinner’ friends. People were amazed.

Even today people in the church get amazed when another believer is doing something with a ‘bad sinner’. How can someone pollute themselves by being around such disgusting people? And, isn’t it possible to get corrupted by those people?

Very quickly Jesus points out that a healthy person does not need a doctor. Nobody goes to the doctor when they are not sick.

Along with that, Jesus quoted Hosea 6:6, is stating that God desires mercy, not sacrifice.

People in the church are very quick to throw stones at sinners in the world. Most sinners do not realize that they are sinners and are dying. They see themselves as a good person living life the best they can.

As a follower of Jesus, you are to have mercy on the lost. Jesus had mercy on you. He did not have to save you, but He did. He could have thrown the books at you and punished you, but He didn’t. Jesus called you.

You also should go out and call sinners to Jesus. In order to call a sinner, you must go where they are. You must spend time with them.

If a stranger suddenly walked up to you and offered you something, would you take it? Most likely not because you do not know or trust the person.

The same thing goes for the sinner. You walk up to him suddenly and offer him Jesus, most likely he will not take it. He needs to know you and realize that he needs Jesus. He needs to know that in reality he is very sick.

Although, you need to be careful in not catching the habits of sinners, you must be willing to go to them to call them to Jesus. Be willing to be a witness. Have mercy on the sinner. Realize he does not know what is really happening. Show the sinner the correct way by living it in front of him and calling him.

I pray today that God will fill you with His Holy Spirit to guide you; that God will open doors for you to be His witness to the lost; that God will show you ways to show His mercy to the sinner; that you will show God’s mercy and love, not judgment; and that God will build His kingdom through you.