Matthew 10: 16 -23
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I Am Sending You Like Sheep Among Wolves
“I am sending you like sheep in the midst of wolves… they will hand you over to the courts and scourge you… Brother will hand over brother to death…Children will hand parents over and put them to death…You will be hated by all because of my name.” Well, no one can say that the Apostles weren’t warned. Who in their right mind would ever agree to something like this? The Apostles were not, excuse the expression, ”LOSERS.” On the contrary, Matthew ran a very successful and lucrative business extorting money from his countrymen. Peter was a fisherman, who was hardly starving to death. Paul was a genius with a bright future due to being so energetic, enthusiastic and zealous. Luke was a medical doctor. Do I have to say any more? These men had made more than their contemporaries. Why then would they ever agree to follow the Lord knowing perfectly well their lives would be cut short because of Him? Because their lives were boring. Their life had no meaning. Life for them was incomplete. Every single convert to the faith knows perfectly well what I’m talking about, and they can testify to this most humbling truth. Life has no meaning outside of Christ. “All things I consider them rubbish”…Rubbish!! “that I may gain Christ.” (Phil 3:8)
Christ is gain. Christ will never be loss. The greatest “losers” are they who never knew Christ. To live a life devoid of Christ is to live a life devoid of a heart-Impossible!! The Apostles tried too. Matthew struggled; Peter backed away on numerous occasions; Paul stumbled and fell. All those who follow Jesus understand what loss is. It means never turning back, and to be labeled a traitor by your countrymen, hunted down like an animal by your occupiers; to be hated like a criminal and rejected by family and friends. But our loss is rubbish compared to gaining Christ my savior. Fitting into the world means to settle for less. The Lord knows well the cross we must bear because he carried it first and the furthest. “Whoever endures to the end, will be saved.” Life on high in Christ Jesus. This is what brings back our joy. “Lord, give me back the joy of your salvation.”(Psalm 51) Today I refuse to be mastered by sin. I wish to accompany my Lord and my God as he sends his 12 Apostles like sheep among wolves. I will not be afraid. I will not cower in fear. Why should I? For I was once a wolf myself!