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Chapter Ten–Background and Questions for Understanding

As we left verse 16, we had been given Jesus’ command to “shake off the dust from our feet and move on.”  Note that scholars speak of this chapter as the “Limited Commission” (as opposed to the Great Commission Jesus will later give to His disciples.) “Limited” in that it is a commission to preach only to the Jews.  The content of the gospel they are called to preach is the same for both commissions. It is the gospel that Jesus Himself preached “the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

Now we move on to verses 16-42.  These are the warnings that Jesus gives them. The warnings fall into four categories: persecution, the price of being identified with Jesus, the cross and the disciples, the message and its reward.

1. Look first at verses 16-23.  What form(s) will the persecution take?  How are the disciples to deal with the unavoidable reality or persecution?

2. Look at verses 24-33.  What will be the result for the disciples as they become identified with Jesus?  How are they to respond to this association?

3.  Verses 34-39 have to do with the cross.  What do you think is the key verse in this section? What does it mean?

4. What are the rewards the disciples should expect in verses 40-42?  What is the warning contained in the rewards?

How do you think Jesus will deliver those rewards?

Further background:  The word hell is Gehenna (or valley of Hinnon). In Jewish teaching this was a place of destruction and is similar to the later  Christian concept of hell. Contrary to popular belieff, Gehenna and Hades are not the same thing.  Hades is simply the place of the dead.



  1. Jesus warns the disciples that they are going out to be “sheep among wolves” while telling others about his love will not be an easy one. He stays that they (we) will be persecuted and betrayed at times.

    My favorite verse is 10:27 “And you should proclaim in the bright light of day everything that I have whispered to you in the dark. Whatever whispers you hear-shout them from the rooftops of houses.”

    The reason I like verse 27 so much is because this is how I find it easiest to tell people about the love of Christ. When I know that something in my life was led by Him, I give all the glory to Him. I don’t get on the roofs of houses, but I do make sure I tell people when in conversation. For example….many people could not understand how I made it through school while working full time with two kids….and I know with every part of me that God’s grace is how I did it. I prayed and cried desperately many times “Lord, I can’t go on!” And each time found his peace afterward, telling me that I could. This is just one example, but I have many….when I just know it is Him talking to me and leading me, I let people know.

    And this brings me to verse 32 “Whoever knows Me here on earth, I will know him in heaven. And whoever proclaims faith in Me here on earth, I will proclaim faith in him before My Father in heaven.”

    • That’s one of the gifts I appreciate in you, Heidi. You just naturally share your testimony of how God impacts your life. And in a down-to-earth way that anyone could relate to. That’s probably why both your daughters do that as well. You are all being used by God to connect others to Him and to a church family!

  2. The apostles also said, “We could not help but proclaim what we had seen and heard.”

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