Matthew Lesson 11 Day 4

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Matthew Lesson 11 Day 4

Matthew 10:16-31

11a) Sending you out as sheep among wolves

In the previous passage, Jesus sent them out to spread the gospel. In Matthew 10:32-42, the tone changes from acceptance and rejection to being hated and persecuted because of Jesus.

Jesus predicted His followers would be—

  • arrested,
  • brought before civil authorities,
  • and tortured.
  • turned over to authorities by their own families.
  • hated by all for His name’s sake.

Opposition today

We are in a time of escalating animosity toward Christianity. Television shows mocking believers have sprung up such as Good Christian Bitches. Many others promote immorality and glorify witchcraft and the demonic.

Buddhist, Hindu, and Eastern religious practices like yoga, transcendental meditation, healing crystals, etc. are now more acceptable and promoted by the entertainment industry. Islam, an oppressive and legalistic religion, is promoted in some public schools.

I’m thankful for organizations such as One Million Moms who fight to clean up the trash in today’s media with email campaigns, ACLJ who defends believers’ freedom when they are unfairly accused, and LifeNews.com‘s stand against abortion and euthanasia.

A popular saying, “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing,” seems appropriate during these times.

For this reason, we must be on our guard and stand firm until the end.

Places where Christians are facing persecution today:

  • Egypt
  • Iran
  • China
  • India
  • Afghanistan
  • USA

I have recently read reports of Christians being fired, arrested, and intimidated because they displayed their faith in some way. Opposing abortion and other sinful behaviors have become politically incorrect. Many businesses don’t allow their employees to say Merry Christmas.

Since I wrote the above paragraph in 2013, the persecution of believers and our beliefs has increased dramatically. Many now call the Bible hate speech.

12)  Specific actions and attitudes we should have:

  • Be on our guard. Matthew 10:17
  • Don’t worry about what you will say or how you will answer. Matthew 10:19
  • Stand firm to the end. Matthew 10:22
  • Don’t be afraid of teachers or masters or those who can only kill the body. Matthew 10:26-31

Matthew 10:23 meaning

  • It could mean before the Holy Spirit is given at Pentecost.
  • Or it could mean the gospel will still be preached in new places until the Messiah returns. That would line up with Matthew 24:14.

Persecution can help spread the gospel—

  • Be a witness in court to attorneys, judges, media, etc.
  • To escape persecution the believers sometimes relocate to other cities, towns, and nations hoping for a less oppressive environment. They preach the word everywhere they go.
  • America was founded by believers escaping a state church governed by the king.

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RESOURCES

1 EnduringWord.com used by written permission.
2 AWM Living Commentary used by written permission.
3 Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations from *The ESV Bible® (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®) copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
4 Strong’s Concordance, public domain.
5 *Spirit Filled Life Bible®copyright © 1991 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. (The Holy Bible, New King James Bible) copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.
6 Ellicott’s Commentary, public domain.
7 Barnes’ Notes on the Bible, public domain.
8 The Names of God Bible (without notes) © 2011 by Baker Publishing Group.

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My answers, research, and notes for BSF Bible Study Fellowship questions Matthew Lesson 11 Day 4