In Matthew chapter 10, Jesus is sending out his disciples out into action. He has prepared and equipped them, given them clear direction, and is advising them on what to expect and how to deal with things they will see. They are to proclaim that the kingdom of heaven has come near, and to “heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, and drive out demons. Then he gives them this great verse.
“I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves.” – Matthew 10:16
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I love this verse because so often we focus so much on loving everyone that forget that it is a battlefield out there. Being a Christian is not all butterflies and rainbows. Jesus even tells his disciples to be on their guard and that they will be hated by everyone because of him. But he tells them that the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. So how does this apply to us today?
As we walk through this life, we will face battles. We will be attacked. The enemy loves nothing more than to try to take down one of God’s warriors. So we too need to “be on guard”, and “stand firm”. So yes we are to love our neighbors as ourselves, but God also gave us brains. We are supposed to use our hearts and minds, and be smart as well as loving.
And since God is all knowing, that means He is the smartest as they come. So if we are of God, then with God in us we should be wise beyond our own understanding. And when we are all about our Father in heaven’s business, He will even give us the words to say when we need them.
So we can be smart, be loving, and in all cases be all about our Father’s business so that the Spirit of the Lord can be alive in us.
Dear heavenly Father, thank you for your Word today. Help us to walk in your Presence and be shrewd as well as loving. When the time comes that when we are put to the test, give us the words to say and help us to stay out of the way of the Holy Spirit. Let our hearts be full of love, even when we are under attack of the enemy and of those who might be against us. Let your light shine in us, and your love flow through us. Help us to love those today who we think may not deserve our love because all they do is fight against us. Help us to see that they are not the enemy, but the enemy is at work in them. Give us wisdom, and help us to stay in love. We give you all the honor and glory today, as always, in Jesus mighty name, Amen.
Today’s full reading: 1 Samuel 27; Psalm 141; 1 Chronicles 9; Matthew 10
Scripture References From Today’s Reflection:
- “Be on your guard; you will be handed over to the local councils and be flogged in the synagogues.” – Matthew 10:17
- “You will be hated by everyone because of me, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved.” – Matthew 10:22
- “As you go, proclaim this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near.’” – Matthew 10:8
“Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received; freely give.” – Matthew 10:8
- ” You will be hated by everyone because of me, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved.” – Matthew 10:22
- “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
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