Read Matthew 10
There has been some tough stuff in this chapter, but now comes the time for the good stuff. OK, even the tough stuff is good stuff. Those are red letter words in my Bible, but these are energizing and encouraging words.
Anyone who welcomes you—you who have set aside the world for Jesus—welcomes Jesus. The one who welcomes Jesus welcomes his Father in heaven as well.
You connect people to God. You bring them to God the Father through Jesus the Son.
We have looked at those who oppose God and work against him and his people in secret, but now let’s consider those who receive him by receiving you. They’re still out there.
Jesus saw people who were weary and worn out. They were like sheep without a shepherd and he sent the 12. We are sent into the world today. We are sent with good news. We are to be God’s light and his love.
People should taste the goodness of God in us, and when they receive us and our message, they will be blessed to know the One who sent us.
This next part has more room for interpretation.
Whoever welcomes a prophet as a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward, and whoever welcomes a righteous person as a righteous person will receive a righteous person’s reward.
It sounds great, but we ask: What is the reward? The promise is not up for interpretation, but the nature of the reward might be. Some would say that what’s promised are the good plans that the Lord has for you. That’s cool.
What if the reward is a continuation the previous thought? Someone welcomes you who come in the name of the Lord, also welcomes the Lord himself. You travel in good company.
Consider the rewards in the parable of the talents. An additional talent added by the master, more responsibility—a promotion if you will, and these words: Come and share your master’s happiness. Come and be a part of your master’s happiness. That’s living in good company.
To welcome a prophet is also to welcome the one who sent him. The prophet travels in good company as well. You are blessed to be in the company of a prophet, even when such an association brings persecution to your household.
You are in good company.
Let’s wrap up the chapter.
And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones who is my disciple, truly I tell you, that person will certainly not lose their reward.
This is reward for those who receive us—those who come in the name of the Lord, and it is counsel for us to receive and bless those who also seek the Lord.
These thoughts parallel what we find in Mark’s gospel. Those who have given up the things of this world for the Kingdom of God will receive a hundredfold what they gave up.
You are blessed to seek God, and his kingdom, and live in his righteousness. God multiplies what you give up in his name and returns it to you.
We are blessed to pick up our cross and follow Jesus.