The Mission of the Twelve
Now these are the names of those twelve apostles: First, Simon, surnamed Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the tax-farmer; James the son of Alphams, and Lebbaeus, surnamed Thaddaeus; Simon the Canaanite, and Judas the Iscariot, who also betrayed Him.
Jesus sent out these twelve, giving them these instructions: "Do not turn aside into the heathen districts, nor enter the towns of the Samaritans; but rather go to the lost sheep of Israel's house. And, as you travel, proclaim the fact that the Kingdom of Heaven is approaching. Restore the feeble, cure the lepers, cast out demons; you have received freely, give freely. Provide neither gold, nor silver, nor copper in your purses; nor yet a bag for the journey, nor two cloaks, nor shoes, nor staff: for the workman is worthy of his food. And into whatever town or village you may enter, inquire who in it is of good repute: stay there until you leave it. And when entering a house, show respect to it. And if the family are worthy of you, let your blessing come upon it; but if it should prove unworthy, keep your blessing to yourselves.
"And if it will not receive you, nor listen to your discourse, departing from that family or that town, shake the dust from your feet. I tell you indeed, that it will be more endurable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the Day of Judgment, than for that town.
"I now send you like sheep into the midst of wolves; be you therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves. But guard yourselves from those men: for they will take you to the police-courts, and will flog you in their synagogues; and you will be dragged before governors and kings because of Me, so that you may give evidence to them and to the heathen about Me. But when they betray you, do not trouble as to what you can say; for in that hour you will be instructed what to say. You are not the speakers; but the Spirit of your Father will plead from within you. Then brother will betray brother to death, and father his child; and children will rise up against parents, and murder them. And you shall be hated by all for My Name's sake; but whoever endures to the end will be saved. When, however, they persecute you in this town, fly into the other; for I assure you that you will not have completed the cities of Israel until the Son of Man comes. The scholar is not greater than his teacher, nor a servant above his master. It is enough if the scholar can become equal to his teacher, and the servant equal to his master. If they call the master of the house Beelzebul, how much rather his attendants! Be not therefore afraid of them: for there is nothing concealed that will not be displayed; nor hidden which shall not become known. What I say to you in the darkness, speak in the light; and what is whispered to your ear, proclaim it upon the housetops. And do not shrink in fear from those who kill the body, for they are not able to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who has power to destroy both soul and body in the Pit.
"Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and not one of them has fallen to the ground without your Father! And even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not, therefore! you are worth many sparrows. Consequently, whoever declares for Me before men, I also will recognise him before My Father Who is in heaven; but whoever denies Me before men, I will also deny him before My Father Who is in heaven.
"Do not conclude that I have come to send peace upon the earth; I have not come to send peace, but a sword! For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and the bride against her mother-in-law; and the enemies of every man will be his own relatives. Whoever prefers his father or his mother before Me, is not worthy of Me; and whoever loves son or daughter more than Me, is not worthy of Me; and whoever will not take up his cross and follow Me, is unworthy of Me! Whoever finds his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake shall find it.
"Who receives you, receives Me; and My entertainer entertains the One Who sent Me. When a man entertains a prophet, he will receive a prophet's reward; and whoever receives the righteous because he is righteous, will receive a righteous reward. And if any give one of the least of them but a drink of cold water because he is a disciple, I tell you indeed, that he shall not go unrewarded."
Transcribed by Mark Hicks on 12-30-2014