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Matthew  ◦   Chapter 10

1 Jesus called over his twelve devoted apostles-in-training and empowered them to heal every disease and sickness, and drive out evil forces.

2 These are the names of twelve apostle interns who were trained by Jesus: Simon (also called Peter) and his brother Andrew, James and John (the sons of Zebedee),3 Philip, Bartholomew, Thomas, Matthew the tax collector, James (the son of Alphaeus), Thaddaeus,4 Simon the Zealot, and Judas Iscariot who later failed his training and betrayed Jesus.

5 Jesus sent these twelve out with the following instructions: "On this mission, don't go to the Gentiles or to any of the Samaritan towns.6 Focus your attention on healing and mobilizing the suffering children of Israel.7 Tell them, 'The Remedy from heaven is here'8 and then demonstrate my purpose to heal humanity from sin by healing the sick, raising the dead, cleansing the lepers, and freeing minds from the influence of demons. But don't accept payment. You have received the Remedy freely, so freely give it away,9 and you will receive more in return. Therefore don't wait until you fill your wallets with money,10 and don't slow yourselves down with luggage and extra clothes. Those whom you heal will provide for your needs.

11 "When you enter a town, stay with someone whose heart is open to the truth.12 When you enter their house, let them know that you come in peace, as a friend.13 If they greet you with friendship, then stay; but if they are hostile or oppositional, then depart.14 If a town or family is hostile and will not welcome you, don't waste time fighting to be heard, but simply shake the dust off your feet to let them know that they are responsible for chasing you away, and then quietly go.15 The sad reality is that on diagnosis day — the day they face the truth about their terminal condition — they will be more sorrowful than Sodom and Gomorrah.16 I am sending you out amongst those who want to destroy you — like sheep amongst wolves — so be innocent as doves and don't antagonize; and remain alert and shrewd like serpents, quietly withdrawing when obvious danger presents itself.

17 "Have your mental defenses ready when dealing with people: those who oppose this message will betray you, report you to authorities, seek to have you imprisoned, and lash out against you–both with tongue and whip–right in church.18 Because you are my representatives, you will be brought before governors, judges and kings, but you will testify to them and to the Gentiles of the Remedy I bring.19 But when arrested, don't worry about what to say, or think you need a speechwriter. At that time, your minds will be enlightened with what to say,20 for you won't be speaking your own ideas, but the Spirit of your Father in heaven will be speaking through you.

21 "People will be so selfish that siblings will turn over their own brothers and sisters to be put to death, and children will renounce their own parents and have them executed.22 Everyone who refuses the Remedy will hate you because of me, but all those who persevere until the end will be eternally healed.23 When in a place where the people persecute you and seek to kill you — and hatred is so intense that minds are closed to the Remedy — don't stay and let them kill you, but get away and spread the Remedy somewhere else. I tell you the simple truth, you will not run out of people with whom to share the Remedy before the Son of Man comes.

24 "A medical student doesn't receive more respect and better treatment than their instructor who not only taught them but developed the cure, nor does a servant receive greater reward than their master.25 So don't be discouraged when you, my students, are called every vile and evil name possible, as they have already called me 'god of the dung-eating maggots.'

26 "Don't be intimidated by them. Speak the truth; for one day, everything will be seen as it really is. All their dirty secrets will be exposed, and the truth of your love will be plainly seen.27 What I am teaching you in private, I want you to proclaim to the world.28 Don't be afraid of those who can destroy the body: they cannot touch your psyche, your mind, your individuality. Rather, be afraid of unremedied sin, which destroys both body and mind and results in eternal destruction.29 Think of a sparrow: one is sold for less than a penny — considered by people as almost worthless — yet not one sparrow falls to the ground without touching the heart of your Father in heaven.30 You are so much more precious to him! He even knows the number of hairs on your head.31 So don't live in fear, for you are worth infinitely more than a sparrow.

32 "Those who unite themselves with me before humanity on earth will be united with me before my Father in heaven.33 But those who sever themselves from me before humanity on earth will be severed from me before my Father in heaven.

34 "Don't think that I have come to make peace with a selfish world. I have not come to bring peace with selfishness, but a sword to cut selfishness out of the hearts of people.35 I have come to cut dysfunctional family ties: to free a son from selfish loyalty to his father's ambitions and feuds, to sever a daughter from the control of an oppressive and manipulative mother, to cut through the fear and hostility a daughter-in-law has toward her mother-in-law.36 A person's worst enemies are often members of their own family.

37 "Those who love parental approval more than they love me are untrustworthy of me and the Remedy I bring; and those who love the approval of their children more than me are untrustworthy of me and the Remedy I bring.38 Anyone who refuses to die to selfishness and follow me — loving others more than self — cannot be trusted by me to distribute the Remedy I bring.39 Whoever seeks to save self remains infected with selfishness and will die of their unhealed condition, but whoever surrenders self in love to me will experience healing of heart, and will find eternal life.

40 "Whoever welcomes you welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes my Father who sent me.41 Anyone who helps one of God's ambassadors shares in the joy of representing God and spreading the Remedy. And anyone who helps someone who is doing right because it is right will share in the joy of rightly representing God and spreading the Remedy.42 And anyone who helps spread the Remedy, even by giving a cup of water to a thirsty student of mine, will share in the joy that comes from living in harmony with God's methods of love."