Getting The Word Out
GETTING THE WORD OUT
Matthew 10 (Read 5-8)
When you get to chapter 10 here Jesus has been “going about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every kind of disease and every kind of sickness.”
- And you can imagine how time consuming that was…and how exhausting it was (night and day; getting very little rest – Mark 2).
- And there are so many more places to go and so many more people that need to hear what He had to say…these people had been “sitting in darkness and in the land of the shadow of death” for years…they were “distressed and downcast”…and they needed to hear the “good news” of the kingdom of heaven…they needed hope…and the sooner the better!
- But it was more than one man could do by Himself.
- How is He going to get the word out so that all can hear?
- He doesn’t have a telephone…there were no computers or emails.
- If He is going to get His message out to the people…or even to all the world He is going to need some help?
- Who can He turn to…who can He send?
Well, look at verse 1 of chapter 10: And having summoned His twelve disciples…
- Your disciples…that is who you turn to in order to get the “good news” out!
Jesus has always turned to His disciples to get the “good news” of His kingdom out…and it is no different today.
- Remember Matt 28:18-20, what we call the Great Commission: “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age. “
- You see, Jesus has turned to every one of us in this room who is a disciple of His to go t and get His word out to others…we are to make people disciples of Christ.
- And what makes Matthew 10 so important to us is it contains some very important truths that will help and encourage us as we go forth on our mission.
- So let’s look at Matthew 10 and let’s learn some things about “GETTING THE WORD OUT.”
First, notice in verse 7 what the disciples were to preach…they were to preach, “The kingdom of heaven is at hand.”
- In other words they were to give the people hope…to tell them that those who let God reign in their hearts will receive great blessings.
Now, just think about all the different things the disciples could have spent their time preaching about.
- They could have preached against the Roman Empire…and stirred the people up.
- They could have preached about the hypocrisy of the Jewish leaders.
- They could have spoken about the need of honest tax-collectors.
- But those things weren’t of first priority.
- What the people needed was a message of hope…of assurance…a message of repentance and salvation.
And it is the same with us today…there are so many things we could preach about in our world today.
- We could preach about the hypocrisy of our political leaders and rile people up…and some do that.
- We could talk about the government handouts and the abuses that are taking place.
- We could preach about the wrongs of the Benghazi attacks…or the issues of Obamacare.
- Some actually preach hatred and bigotry and bias. (Jeremiah Wright).
We could preach all kinds of things but what is it that Jesus has commissioned us to do: “Go and make disciples…baptizing them…teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.”
- He says this in Mark 16:16: “Go into all the world and preach the gospel (the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ) to all creation. 16 “He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned.
- Remember what the apostle Paul said in Romans 1:16: I am not ashamed of the gospel…for it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes, for the Jews first, and also for the Greek.
- And in 1 Cor. 1:23 the apostle Paul says, “We preached Christ and Him crucified.”
- Listen, if we preach the kingdom of heaven…if we preach Christ…if people accept that message…these other issues will take care of themselves.
So the disciples were sent to preach the kingdom of heaven….we are to go and make disciples…or followers of Christ…we are to preach the gospel to all creation and not get sidetracked on all these other issues.
I also want you to notice from Matthew 10: 5 that the assignment to preach belonged to every disciple.
- This is an assignment given to everyone who is a disciple of Christ.
A baseball team went out to play a game of baseball. Just as the umpire was saying, “Batter up!” the catcher for the home team arrived and took his place behind the plate.
- The center fielder didn’t show up at all but sent his regrets.
- The third baseman failed to come to the game also because he had been up late the night before.
- The short stop was there but left his glove at home.
- Two other fielders were away on a weekend trip but said they were there in spirit.
- The pitcher went to the mound and looked around for his teammates…but his heart was heavy because their positions were empty.
- The umpire called “Play Ball!”; the fans were in the stands, and there was nothing to do but pitch the ball and hope for the best.
- But in addition to pitching, the pitcher had to cover first, second and third base as well as play center field.
- When the absent players heard that the team lost, they were very upset. They held a meeting and decided to get a new pitcher.
Like a baseball team, we as disciples’ of Christ can’t effectively do what we are to do unless everyone does their part.
- The pitcher is important but unless everyone else shows up and fields their position the game will be lost.
- I wonder if we did our part just here in Brady, what kind of difference would we see?
Notice verse 8 again. The disciples were sent to “heal the sick.”
- Now, we must understand something here. These men were empowered by Jesus to heal.
- The apostles and the people that the apostles passed this miraculous gift a long too had the power from the Holy Spirit to do some amazing things…and the purpose for using those powers was to prove that the message they were preaching was true.
Now, we as disciples’ of Christ are not able to heal in the same sense that the apostles were able to heal.
- But we can bring healing to people who are hurting.
- Hurting form the effects of sin; hurting from loneliness; hurting from hopelessness.
- Everyone that the disciples physically healed, eventually died.
- However, when we show people that the ultimate source of healing is found in the hope of eternity, we are doing more than healing them for a while…we are showing them that Christ can heal forever.
And look at the very end of verse 8. Why in the world would any one accept the commission that Jesus has placed upon us?
- Look at what Jesus says, “…freely you received, freely give.”
As disciples’ of Christ we have been commissioned by our Lord to “go and make disciples of all nations.”
- We are to preach the “gospel”…the good news of the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.”
- It is an assignment that has been given to every one of us.
- And we are to bring “healing” to those who are hurting…and we do it because of the salvation that has been freely given to us.
But now, as you go forth on your mission assignment you need to learn some other things here from Matthew 10. Look at vs. 14: 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.
There are going to be people who will not listen.
- But, that does not mean that we are supposed to give up and quit.
- All that means is we are to preach somewhere else.
- It is extremely frustrating to teach someone and them to reject it but there is something we should all remember: If people rejected God in the Old Testament; If they rejected Jesus in the New Testament; if they rejected the apostles who were men filled with the Holy Spirit and power…the people will reject us.
Not only will there be people who don’t want to listen to our message but some people will be combative…look at verse 17: “But beware of men; for they will deliver you up to the courts, and scourge you in their synagogues; 18 and you shall even be brought before governors and kings for My sake, as a testimony to them and to the Gentiles.
- We may not face the same type of persecution that the disciple had to face, but we will face people who will be combative to the message of Jesus Christ.
- Why? Because Satan knows the power of the Gospel message and he will do all he can to stop it.
And when they persecute you…look at verse 28-30: 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. 29 “Are not two sparrows sold for a cent? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. 30 “But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31 “Therefore do not fear; you are of more value than many sparrows.
- When you go forth to fulfill the commission that has been given to you, you will face persecution and the potential of persecution can and often does immobilize you.
- But it is much better to “fear God and keep His commandments” than it is to fear men.
- Besides, God knows and sees what happens to you and just as He provides for the sparrows He will provide even more for you.
Jesus has always depended on His disciples to “get the word out” and it is obvious that people need to hear it.
- This past week in Oklahoma 3 young men killed a baseball player from Australia just for the “fun of it.”
- A couple of weeks ago the California Legislature passed a law that allows boys to go to the girl’s bathroom and the girls to go to the boy’s bathroom.
- Here in our own community in the past few weeks we have had men sexually assault young girls…things are a mess!
- If for nothing more than to possibly deter some of the immoral things that are happening we need to be talking to people about the kingdom of God.
Justice of the Peace: Committed suicide…”better off.” No, he is not! But that is what most people think.
- We need to be “getting the word out” if it doesn’t do anything more than make people think about it.
And we need to be talking to our friends, our family, the people we come in contact to about the death, burial, and crucifixion of Christ…not in a smug way…not in an arrogant way…but with love and grace…reassuring them that salvation can be theirs if they will repent and come to Christ.
- We need to all do what we have been commissioned to do.
- We need to be busy “healing” others the best we can and reassuring them where “real healing is found.”
© Sunset Ridge Church of Christ 2023