TEXT: Matthew 10:5-7
5 These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not:
6 But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.
7 And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand.
John Piper said, “If you alter or obscure the Biblical portrait of God in order to attract converts, you don’t get converts to God, you get converts to an illusion. This is not evangelism, but deception.”
Today, we will continue our focus on Jesus’ initial instructions to the Twelve as He sends them out on their first (or one of their first) missionary journeys. From this command, we have learned: (1) That the messengers of Christ go where He tells them. (2) That the messengers of Christ go to their own.
The third thing that we see from this passage is that the messengers of Christ go with a specific message. Jesus said, “As ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand.” This is the very same message that John the Baptist proclaimed and the very same message that Jesus proclaimed. And that ought to tell us something: if we are not preaching that the kingdom of heaven is at hand, then we are preaching the wrong message. Jesus did not send His disciples forth to preach that the kingdom of prosperity was at hand, or that the kingdom of health and wellness was at hand, or that the kingdom of a trouble-free life was at hand, or even that a political kingdom was at hand. Jesus sent them forth to preach that the kingdom of heaven was and is at hand.
But what is the kingdom of heaven? John Piper said, “The basic meaning of the word ‘kingdom’ in the Bible is God’s kingly rule — his reign, his action, his lordship, his sovereign governance. Since God’s purpose for the world is to save a people for himself and renew the world for that people, his kingly rule implies a saving and a redeeming activity on their behalf. This is why the coming of the kingdom in the New Testament is called good news. In and through Jesus, God, the king, is coming into the world in a new way to establish his saving rule. First, in the hearts of his people and in their relationships by triumphing over sin, Satan, and death. Then by the exercise of his reign, gathering a people for himself in congregations that live as citizens of a new allegiance of the kingdom not of this world.”
So, when the disciples went forth to preach they were delivering a two-part message to their hearers: (1) The King (Jesus Christ) has come to save and redeem the world. (2) You can be a part of the kingdom by submitting your life to the reign of the King and bowing to His lordship in your heart. This message was often hard for the disciples themselves to grasp because they had grown up believing that the kingdom of heaven was synonymous with a political kingdom for the Jews. Even after Jesus’ death and resurrection, the disciples’ foremost question was, “Lord, at this time will you restore the kingdom to Israel?”
But Jesus primarily came to conquer by crucifixion and to establish His kingdom in a different way — that is in the hearts of the men and women who would receive Him. We might refer to this kingdom as John MacArthur does — “the invisible kingdom.” If we preach anything other than the coming of the invisible kingdom of God — the breaking forth of divinity upon humanity — we are straying from our mission. People ought not to get the idea from our preaching that the Gospel is about a physical reformation, be it financial, educational, social, or otherwise. The Gospel is about a spiritual reformation. It is about the descent of heaven into the human heart. It may very well have effects in the physical realm and in the kingdom of this world. But that is not our message. Our message is that the King came to save and redeem His creation. This is the good news. This is the Gospel message of the messengers of Christ.
Albert B. Simpson wrote:
Jesus only is our message,
Jesus all our theme shall be;
We will lift up Jesus ever,
Jesus only will we see.
Harvest fields are waiting,
Do not linger long;
Borne upon the breezes,
Comes the reaper’s song.
Patiently, O toiler,
Pluck the golden grain,
Ere the shades of evening
Fall o’er hill and plain.
Harvest fields are waiting:
Who will come today,
Join the band of reapers,
Bear the sheaves away?
Soon the day of toiling
Will be ever past;
May the Master’s greeting
Be “well done” at last!
Harvest fields are waiting,
Labor while you may;
Time is swiftly flying,
Come and work today.
Now, if you are with us today and you do not know Jesus Christ as your Savior, allow me to show you how you can place your faith and trust in Him for Salvation from sin and Hell.
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the Cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at [email protected] and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.
He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.
He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.