Daily Word

Worthy welcome | Matthew 10:5-15

5 Jesus sent out these twelve, instructing them: “Do not go among the Gentiles, and do not go into a city of the Samaritans; 6 but rather go 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, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give. 9 Do not take gold, or silver, or [even] copper money in your money belt, 10 or a provision bag for your journey, or even two tunics, or sandals, or a staff; for the worker deserves his support.

11 Whatever city or village you enter, ask who in it is worthy [who welcomes you and your message], and stay at his house until you leave [that city]. 12 As you go into the house, give it your greeting [that is, ‘Peace be to this house’]. 13 If [the family living in] the house is worthy [welcoming you and your message], give it your [blessing of] peace [that is, a blessing of well-being and prosperity, the favor of God]. But if it is not worthy, take back your blessing of peace. 14 Whoever does not welcome you, nor listen to your message, as you leave that house or city, shake the dust [of it] off your feet [in contempt, breaking all ties]. 15 I assure you and most solemnly say to you, it will be more tolerable on the day of judgment for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah than for that city [since it rejected the Messiah’s messenger].

Jewish priority

Jesus is in the process of sending out His 12 disciples / apostles. He clearly instructs them to not go among the Gentiles or Samaritans, but to focus on the Jews, the lost sheep. They are the chosen people of God. God, by His grace and purpose, called Abram and promised to make a great nation from him. More than that, He promised that through him, all the world would be blessed. Jesus is this blessing. Today, we are the chosen of God, chosen also by grace for His purpose. But we do not replace Israel.

Matthew 10:5-15 (AMP) 

Disciple’s work

We talked in yesterday’s post about the Kingdom work of the 12 disciples (cast out demons, heal). This passage emphasizes preaching of the Kingdom then, mostly elaborates on the miracles. 


What preparations do the 12 make? Do they go home, clean the house, arrange a dog-sitter, stop the mail, arrange someone to water the lawn, go buy those last-minute necessities, and pack a suitcase or two? No, they go as they are. They trust God through the grace and hospitality of the Jews they are going to for their needs. The worker is worthy of his wages.

Worthy welcome

Jesus brings up the idea of a worthy host. The 12 should look for someone in town who is worthy. The AMP version elaborates with “who welcomes you and your message” which is the idea (but not in the original text). There will be some who will welcome them and accept the teaching. These have their hearts prepared by the Lord and are seeking His Kingdom. Maybe they had gone out to John the Baptist earlier and repented and are waiting for this Kingdom. They will receive the blessing.

Others will reject the disciples and, ultimately, the message of the Messiah. Anyone who rejects the Messiah is rejecting salvation and reconciliation to God. They are choosing to be eternally separated from Him. Their sins remain unforgiven. “The one who believes in the Son has eternal life; but the one who does not obey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.” (John 3:36)


  • Does this mean that anyone who follows a call into foreign missions should just get up and go, no preparations? I think not. This was a specific call to the 12 who, by the way, came back and continued their ministry with Jesus, learning from Him.
  • Have you welcomed the message of the Messiah? Have you turned to Him for forgiveness and reconciliation to God? For more about salvation click here.
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