|Matthew 10 |
1 Now when he had called his twelve disciples to him, he gave them power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and disease.
2 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 tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus;
4 Simon the Canaanite, and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.
5 Jesus sent forth these twelve, and commanded them, saying, "Do not go among the Gentiles, and do not enter into any city of the Samaritans.
6 But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.
7 And as you go, preach, saying: 'The kingdom of heaven is at hand.'
8 Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons; freely you have received, freely give.
9 Provide neither gold, nor silver nor brass in your purses,
10 Nor bag for your journey, neither two coats or shoes, nor staves; for the workman is worthy of his food.
11 And whatever city or town you enter, inquire who in it is worthy; and stay there until you go from there.
12 When you come into the house, give your greeting.
13 And if the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it; but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you.
14 Whoever will not receive you or hear your words, shake the dust off of your feet when you leave that house or that city.
15 Truthfully I say to you that it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment, than for that city.
16 Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves; therefore be as wise as serpents, and as innocent as doves.
17 But beware of men; for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will whip you in their synagogues.
18 And you will 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 you will speak; for it will be given to you in that same hour what you will speak.
20 For it is not you who speaks, but the Spirit of your Father who speaks through you.
21 Brother shall deliver up brother to death, and father the child; and the children shall rise up against their parents, and cause them to be put to death.
22 And you shall be hated by all men for my name's sake; but he who endures to the end will be saved.
23 But when they persecute you in one city, flee into another. For truthfully I say to you, you will not finish going through the cities of Israel, before the Son of man comes.
24 The disciple is not above his master, nor the servant above his lord.
25 It is enough for the disciple that he is like his master, and the servant like his lord. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more will they speak evil of those who are of his household?
26 Therefore, do not fear them; for there is nothing covered that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known.
27 What I tell you in darkness, speak that in the light; and what you hear in the ear, preach that upon the housetops. [What you were past taught by Him in darkness, (still sinning), can be spoken later if you are in the light; as George Fox said, "Let all...consider, before they utter, that the light is up." To preach righteously is to speak only what you first hear Him speak immediately prior to your speaking.]
28 And do not fear those who kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul; but rather fear him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.1 [From the Word of the Lord within: "No soul is immortal apart from me." There is no permanent soul of man, unless that man unites in union with Christ and the Father; those who fail to do so while on earth, will lose their soul. The beginning of the fear of God is to depart from evil. From the Word of the Lord within: "Fear God and give Him the glory. To fear is to depart from evil."]
29 Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground without your Father knowing.
30 The very hairs of your head are all numbered.
31 Fear not therefore, you are of more value than many sparrows.
32 Whoever therefore shall confess me before men, I will confess him before my Father who is in heaven.
33 But whoever denies me before men, I will also deny him before my Father who is in heaven.
34 Do not think that I have come to bring peace on earth. I did not came to bring peace, but a sword.
35 For I have come to set a man at variance against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter in law against her mother in law.
37 He who loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and he who loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.2
38 He who does not take his cross, and follow after me, is not worthy of me. [To follow after Him is to expose yourself to the Lord's commands and then obey Him; to obey all of his commands, you must love the Lord more than you love your family; so, despite their opposition, you obey his commands — that is following Him. To follow Christ you must sit in humble silence to wait on Him as you listen for Him to speak to you from his word within your heart; when you hear Him, then you must obey Him. Self-denial occurs by obeying the Lord's commands heard instead of your will, (His will, not your will); this is the cross — the inward cross of self-denial. From the Word of the Lord within: "There are many that deny the cross and all that is necessary. He who is not on the cross is not worthy of me. The purpose of this website is to teach you how to carry your cross."]
39 He who finds his life shall lose it; and he who loses his life for my sake shall find it.3 [To find the superior life of God, Christ must put off the body of the sins of your flesh by circumcising your heart, destroying all sin in you; which occurs by you following Jesus on the inward cross of self-denial, to thereby save your soul to live the superior Life of God in union with God. If you live after the flesh (the sinful nature), you will die; but if through the Spirit you mortify (put to death) the deeds of the body, you will live. Rom 8:13.]
40 He who receives you, receives me; and he who receives me, receives him who sent me.
41 He who receives a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet's reward; and he who receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man's reward.
42 Whoever, in the name of a disciple, shall give a drink to one of these little ones, even a cup of cold water, truthfully I say to you, he shall in no way lose his reward."
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1 fear him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. This is God. We must fear his disapproval, to seek his counsel and teachings, hoping to please him. If we fail to learn how to live soberly, righteously, and godly in this present world, we will meet His fury, (but accompanied by compassion). By mercy and truth iniquity is purged [from the heart], and by the fear of the LORD men depart from evil. Pro 16:6. But Christendom does not depart from evil because they are taught with lies that God accepts them in their sins as long as they believe in Jesus. So Christendom has no fear of God. Therefore Christendom has no knowledge: The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction. Pro 1:7. (Many in Christendom have a lot of knowledge about the Bible, but God is only known through revelation, not by reading about Him.) Christendom thinks the cross is jewelry and discards the necessity of every disciple carrying their cross; therefore Christendom perishes and their end is destruction.
Destruction of the body and the soul occurs at death for those not purified on the earth, but not the spirit, which returns to God: The spirit shall return to God who gave it [at death]. Ecc 12:7. If a man does not attain freedom from sin, purity, union, salvation, and translation to the kingdom of God while on earth, God destroys his soul and body, banishing his spirit to Hell in order to learn about the evil in his heart. To even experience the purifying pain of the lake of fire as a man takes his part in it, there has to be some form of life; so complete destruction does not occur. The Light Christ, steps out of a man, as he is banished to take his part in the lake of fire; and then a man is left without restraint, free to pursue the desires of his heart to the maximum possible. He is satiated with his desires, until they are burnt out of him, and he returns to heaven to live in the outer court as a spiritual gentile whose heart was not circumcised on the earth, who was not part of the first fruits to God. See Is There Hope for All for more.
What constitutes the soul is a mystery that only God can reveal. If you think you completely understand the difference between soul and spirit, try to draw the line between them, even while referring to Heb 4:12: For the word of God is quick [living], and powerful [active], and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit. William Penn, describing the soul as pure spirit, only deepens the confusion. Peter tells us the soul must be purified, "Since you have purified your souls by obeying the truth through the Spirit." 1 Pet 1:22. Jesus is quoted that the soul of sinners is destroyed in Hell: fear him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. Mat 10:28. Ezekiel is quoted that the soul who sins shall die. Ezekiel 18:4,20. Genesis states that God's breath on the clay of Adam made him a living soul, but that hardly applies to those born after Adam. We know that God foreknew persons, but whether that was in spirit, or in soul, or in spirit and soul, we don't know. The soul is a mystery, which I suspect has a potential grandeur, that when understood, would take our breath away in amazement. I believe the soul is the part of man that is capable of uniting with God to become one with him; I believe it to be the platform of an entirely new creation, which is far more than just a man, and if that platform is not united with God while on earth, it is lost. Jesus is quoted that we will lose our soul, (unless we attain salvation): "For what does it profit a man, if he should gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?" Mark 8:36. I believe the extent of the loss of a soul is beyond physical man's ability to believe or even understand. When we asked the Lord what it meant to be in heaven without losing one's soul, his reply was: "to live in a higher dimension."
Faith in Jesus leads to salvation just like faith in Jesus purifies the heart, but neither is instant; both require persistent seeking of the Lord's teachings and commands, with total obedience over time. Pay attention to the New Covenant's exclusions — requirements, and qualifying conditions; otherwise you too will face God's fury. To be saved means to have been saved from even the desire to sin, by a new heart, new mind, and new spirit being given to you by God; nothing counts, but an entirely new creature, raised up with Christ to the heavens, where you sit in him at rest.
From the Word of the Lord within: "The potential fulfillment of the soul is beyond your ability to grasp. No soul is immortal apart from me."
With further regard to the ambiguities of soul vs. spirit:
There is no Hebrew word to distinguish soul from body; that distinction and the concept of an immortal soul comes from the Greek philosophers Plato and Socrates, and that concept was adopted by Roman Catholicism in the writings of Origen, Augustine, and Thomas. The leaders of the Protestant Reformation retained the belief of an immortal soul though their Bibles stated an apparent conflict. Israel was very Greek after being conquered by Alexander the Great in 330 BC, so the translators and writers of the New Testament were influenced by the Greek philosophies. The Hebrew word nephesh means "a breathing creature," and in the Old Testament that word is translated sometimes to "soul," sometimes to "being," and even to "creature" (animals). The New Testament uses the Greek word psuche for nephesh, which also has multiple meanings: human souls, for animals and for life. In a several verses such as Mat 16:26, the Greek word psuche <5590> is translated as "soul" by some Bibles but translated as "life" in others, which can be understood to be radically different. With multiple possible meanings, confusion and error can easily result. The exact differences between soul, spirit, mind, and life are not very clear: the differences are fuzzy at best.
Early Quakers George Fox, Stephen Crisp, and Edward Burrough, were all perfected, kingdom-dwellers, in union with God and Christ; and they all referred to immortal souls; and Stephen Crisp even stated "you will lose your immortal soul," quoting Matthew 16:24-26. To lose something that is immortal: 1) casts doubt on its immortality, or 2) it means the immortal soul goes somewhere other than within you, or 3) the soul was created to be immortal and is immortal if purified. These early Quakers certainly knew much more about the soul than us; why they did not bother to explain the conflict with the King James Bible that they all knew so, so well, is a mystery too. Exactly what they knew, I have been told I will understand; and when I do, if I am permitted, and if it is explainable in earthly vocabulary, I will update this explanation.
2 Do not think that I have come to bring peace on earth. I did not came to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to set a man at variance against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter in law against her mother in law. He who loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and he who loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. A man's foes will be those of his own household. And you must want to please the Lord more than those who oppose you.
Luke makes the point strongly: "If any man comes to me and does not hate his father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters — yes even his own life also, he cannot be my disciple." Luke 14:26. When you are a true seeker of God, denying your former evil activities in the world, (including the deficit sects), the basis of your friendships will diminish. As you deny foul language, revelry, drinking, carousing, etc., your friends and family will become uncomfortable and begin to attack your commitment to goodness. If you and your spouse have been attending a deficit sect, your spouse may become your worst enemy, leaving you or threatening to leave you. Your family will be used to attack you; they will be your enemies and are the sword that Jesus spoke of. This is part of the cross, to suffer from your family's opposition. You must want the approval of God more than the approval of your fellow men, particularly your family. But the sword that allows you to be attacked is to teach you to have patience, forgive, have mercy, love, and live by faith. From the Word of the Lord within: "after a man has demonstrated his faith, do I give him peace."
When someone becomes convinced of the true hope, the true gospel, and the only way; and when they leave their deficit sect, several of their spouses have threatened to leave, a few even leaving. Most spouses get over their opposition and have even heard from the Lord of their spouse's correct seeking of Him. The Lord has no desire to destroy a marriage, so things usually work out; but it is a painful trial at least. The maxim of the world in negotiation is: the party that is afraid of losing a negotiation is the party that loses. Count the costs, and be ready to forsake anything and everything of your former life.
The Lord has to show us each and every problem we have, many that are hidden, and lead us, (by moving the world around us if necessary), to feeling the pain of our problems — pain so great that when we are tempted, instead of a trigger to fail, it becomes a trigger to succeed. The sooner you understand that everything that happens to you has been arranged to help you grow, the sooner you will be able to forgive, and the sooner you will be at peace, rather than angry or resentful. This life is an illusion. God is far more powerful and at work around you than you can imagine. For those whom he loves and calls, he controls everything around them.* (This arrangement of circumstances only occurs for those whom he loves and calls.) And if you have a deep hunger, he loves you and has called you. The hunger is his gift to you. It is his way of drawing you to him. So you will starve and mourn, and starve and mourn. But you will eventually be filled and comforted. It works. Trust Him. He created you. He is in you. He knows you much better than you do. He will change you to be like Him, leading you to purity and then to union with Him in the Kingdom within, where you walk by the Light of God.
*From the Word of the Lord within: "If people want to make a bad-choice decision, that's their prerogative."
So, do not believe that God has caused someone around you to do something evil that affects you.
He protects your life so that you can be completed, but He does not stop those around you from doing wrong.
When you are committed to following the Lord, hearing Him as you wait on Him, everything that happens to you is permitted by the Lord to bring you to perfection. He will let those around you abuse you in order to teach you to give up anger, resentment, and wanting revenge; and instead to forgive them, just as He forgave those who beat and crucified Him. We must suffer with Him in order to reign with Him. 2 Tim 2:11-12. We have to trust that everything is from Him, which trust is faith; the just shall live by faith, Hab 2:4.
From the Word of the Lord within: "live in the fortress of faith where it doesn't matter if someone gives you a kiss or hits you with a baseball bat," knowing everything that happens to a true seeker is used to help him grow spiritually. So if I get hit with a baseball bat, He expects me to learn the necessity of forgiving: to ignore it, despite the pain suffered and wrongness of the person wielding the bat. Your life is an obstacle course, designed by God, for you to crawl over and through, learning to forgive and love despite the pain and injustice. This life is a boot camp to produce a soldier of love, whose weapon is the sword of the Spirit, the living word of God. When you realize it is God who has allowed, (permitted, not caused or motivated), that person to be rude, ugly, and painful to you, you can easily forgive them because they are just an obstacle of potential resentment, whose offense is to be overlooked, (or if not overlooked, to produce the pain of resentment), thus being used by God to help you spiritually progress.
3 He who finds his life will lose it; he who loses his life for my sake shall find it. You cannot please God continuing to live in your sinful nature, even if you think you have been "saved." You must put to death your selfish, sinful nature on the inward cross of self-denial to save the life of your soul and gain the life of God. If you choose to continue to live your life as you please, you will lose your one chance to save your soul and obtain the eternal life of God. If you crucify your lusts and affections on the cross of Christ, in obedience to his listened to teachings, you will enter the Kingdom of Heaven, with eternal peace and joy, while on earth and then forever.
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