Sending Out the Twelve Apostles
1 Jesus1 called his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits2 so they could cast them out and heal every kind of disease and sickness.3 2 Now these are the names of the twelve apostles:4 first, Simon5 (called Peter), and Andrew his brother; James son of Zebedee and John his brother; 3 Philip and Bartholomew;6 Thomas7 and Matthew the tax collector;8 James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus;9 4 Simon the Zealot10 and Judas Iscariot,11 who betrayed him.12
5 Jesus sent out these twelve, instructing them as follows:13 “Do not go to Gentile regions14 and do not enter any Samaritan town.15 6 Go16 instead to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 7 As you go, preach this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven is near!’ 8 Heal the sick, raise the dead,17 cleanse lepers, cast out demons. Freely you received, freely give. 9 Do not take gold, silver, or copper in your belts, 10 no bag18 for the journey, or an extra tunic,19 or sandals or staff,20 for the worker deserves his provisions. 11 Whenever21 you enter a town or village,22 find out who is worthy there23 and stay with them24 until you leave. 12 As you enter the house, give it greetings.25 13 And if the house is worthy, let your peace come on it, but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you.26 14 And if anyone will not welcome you or listen to your message, shake the dust off27 your feet as you leave that house or that town. 15 I tell you the truth,28 it will be more bearable for the region of Sodom and Gomorrah29 on the day of judgment than for that town!
Persecution of Disciples
16 “I30 am sending you out like sheep surrounded by wolves,31 so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves. 17 Beware32 of people, because they will hand you over to councils33 and flog34 you in their synagogues.35 18 And you will be brought before governors and kings36 because of me, as a witness to them and the Gentiles. 19 Whenever37 they hand you over for trial, do not worry about how to speak or what to say,38 for what you should say will be given to you at that time.39 20 For it is not you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.
21 “Brother40 will hand over brother to death, and a father his child. Children will rise against41 parents and have them put to death. 22 And you will be hated by everyone because of my name. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. 23 Whenever42 they persecute you in one place,43 flee to another. I tell you the truth,44 you will not finish going through all the towns45 of Israel before the Son of Man comes.
24 “A disciple is not greater than his teacher, nor a slave46 greater than his master. 25 It is enough for the disciple to become like his teacher, and the slave like his master. If they have called the head of the house ‘Beelzebul,’ how much more will they defame the members of his household!
Fear God, Not Man
26 “Do47 not be afraid of them, for nothing is hidden48 that will not be revealed,49 and nothing is secret that will not be made known. 27 What I say to you in the dark, tell in the light, and what is whispered in your ear,50 proclaim from the housetops.51 28 Do52 not be afraid of those who kill the body53 but cannot kill the soul. Instead, fear the one who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.54 29 Aren’t two sparrows sold for a penny?55 Yet not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father’s will.56 30 Even all the hairs on your head are numbered. 31 So do not be afraid;57 you are more valuable than many sparrows.
32 “Whoever, then, acknowledges58 me before people, I will acknowledge59 before my Father in heaven. 33 But whoever denies me before people, I will deny him also before my Father in heaven.
Not Peace, but a Sword
34 “Do not think that I have come to bring60 peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace but a sword. 35 For I have come to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law, 36 and a man’s enemies will be the members of his household.61
37 “Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. 38 And whoever does not take up his cross62 and follow me is not worthy of me. 39 Whoever finds his life63 will lose it,64 and whoever loses his life because of me65 will find it.
40 “Whoever receives you receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.66 41 Whoever receives a prophet in the name of a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward. Whoever67 receives a righteous person in the name of a righteous person will receive a righteous person’s reward. 42 And whoever gives only a cup of cold water to one of these little ones in the name of a disciple, I tell you the truth,68 he will never lose his reward.”