by Christina Farris
| Matthews 10:1-20 KJV
1 And when he had called unto him his twelve disciples, he gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease.
2 Now the names of the twelve apostles are these; The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother;
3 Philip, and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the publican; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus;
4 Simon the Canaanite, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed him.
5 These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not:
6 But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.
7 And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand.
8 Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.
9 Provide neither gold, nor silver, nor brass in your purses,
10 Nor scrip for your journey, neither two coats, neither shoes, nor yet staves: for the workman is worthy of his meat.
11 And into whatsoever city or town ye shall enter, enquire who in it is worthy; and there abide till ye go thence.
12 And when ye come into an house, salute it.
13 And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it: but if it be not worthy, let your peace return to you.
14 And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shake off the dust of your feet.
15 Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city.
16 Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.
17 But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues;
18 And ye shall be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a testimony against them and the Gentiles.
19 But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak.
20 For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you.
|Jesus is clear to his twelve disciples as he began to train them for ministry. He sent the twelve to the household of Israel. During the time of Christ as He lived and walked among us, he was still apart of Jewish faith. There was no distinction between Christians and Jews. The distinction would come after the cross. For time the two groups were still one. And even today some groups still worship together. Yet for right now in the time of Christ we see Christ ministry was to his brethren. His disciples would go house to house teaching about the kingdom of God was at hand. The gentiles would not necessarily understand about the kingdom of heaven. Yet the disciple first call was to their own countrymen. Hard to grasp when we know after the cross the disciples were told to go to all nations baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. In the begining the call was to their own. The gathering of God's sheep with proof of miracles from all sorts of diseases, the crippled walked and blind healed. They were to share as they were shared with. They were not to pack a bag. A bag would mean they were on a journey, but they were not on a journey in their own homeland but working along side the people. Not going any place beyond staying to share the good news of Jesus coming, That the Messiah was here. The signs would follow that fact.
Does healing still occur today, does not the work of the Lord still go forth among all people. Yet one has to ask why not all groups of people? For the disciples it was training ground to be among their own that would receive the news of the Kingdom of Heaven. Not all were listening and not all would be welcoming, but rejection would come among their own people first as well as acceptance. It easy to walk and talk among people that understand the religious language then to go among people that you have to teach even the basics too. They were not teaching basic but giving evidence of the Messiah being here. They were not claiming to be the Messiah themselves but pointing to Jesus. The coming of a great leader was among the people. The gathering of the people would come to see this Messiah, to see if it be true. Of course there would be rejection as well as believers. Some only believing for the moment only to disgard it for the blinding for the time of the cross. God would blind Israel long enough for Christ to face death and be resurrected.
Training always begins among believers and then to nonbelievers. If we can not share the Gospel in the house of God we will never share outside the church. It matters not the size of the group of believers that one shares with, but it starts somewhere. We ask God to heal as well as minister to those in need. The miracles at the time of Christ may not happen as actively, perhaps because of a lack of faith among the people. Yet a prayer list, prayer chain is formed in faith to wait on the healing time of God. Some groups still lay hands on the sick for healing as well as anoint. Healing as not changed, it not always in the abundance of miracles among the crowd. Yet if each group would write down those names of those who are being healed that list would grow for the church to know God power is still among them. A list for encouragement of faith not to deter or take away. A reminder of God's blessings. Healing begins at the soul and Spirit long before it begins at the physical body, but both spiritual and physcial body can become whole. People in wheelchairs and even lame can be healed, but it all in God's timing not ours. I have heard stories where people walked out of wheelchairs, but I have never seen it happen, in the miraclous way people claimed. Yet I still believe it is possible. I believe it is possible because of faith and knowing God is able to do even more then we ask. Is it a false hope perhaps for some. The let down for those not healed is great, and a discouragement of faith.
The discouragement of faith of not getting the miracle or door met that we desire is discouraging, but it does not mean God is not in control. God knows what He is doing. If we loose everything, is God still in control the answer is yes. The abandonment of things is only human possession. God is still working and leading in times of need. Can one minister to a person without experience the same lost that another person feels, I think so, but it also teaches a greater compassion for those hurting, when God begins to restore. If one being sick after being healed does it not remind a person of his or her humanity upon the earth. That God miracles are for a purpose to minister to others around them. Were not miracles at the time of Jesus for the work of ministry would go forth. It is sad when the spiritual soul healing must come with the miracle and not with just faith for spiritual growth. When evidence of God must be manifest by the power of the Holy Spirit to convict the believer. How many miracles do you need before God moves your heart. Pharaoh had plenty of signs and wonders, yet his lack of faith continued. The children of Israel no doubt watch with amazement for a time, yet their hearts were still not convicted, for those miracles did not hold them to conviction of faith in the wilderness for belief.
Miracles alone will not hold your faith together, nor will it hold a church together. God must move in the hearts and minds of the people, worship of God must come from the heart as well as belief. God was stirring his own people to belief. Yet not all would believe. In fact their hearts would grow hard to the message of the kingdom was at hand for they were expecting war to come, not spiritual salvation for the people. When sharing Christ never worry about what you will say, but speak by the Spirit.
Dear Heavenly Father thank you for your grace to share with others the message of Christ. Let us not forget our first call to those of faith and then to those without faith. May spiritual growth of faith also come without always the signs of wonders so we know the difference of faith. In Jesus precious name, Amen.
Continual Scripture Study for Devotion: Acts 1:6-9 KJV
6 When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?
7 And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.
8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. note
9 And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight.