The Twelve Commissioned and Sent Out

10 And summoning his twelve disciples, he gave them authority over unclean spirits, so that they could expel them[a] and could heal every[b] disease and every[c] sickness. Now these are the names of the twelve apostles: first Simon who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother, James[d] the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, Philip, and Bartholomew, Thomas, and Matthew the tax collector, James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus, Simon the Zealot,[e] and Judas Iscariot—the one who also betrayed him.

Jesus sent out these twelve, instructing them saying, “Do not go on the road to the Gentiles, and do not enter into a city of the Samaritans, but go instead to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And as you[f] are going, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near!’ Heal those who are sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, expel demons. Freely you have received; freely give. Do not procure gold or silver or copper for your belts. 10 Do not take a traveler’s bag for the road, or two tunics, or sandals, or a staff, for the worker is deserving of his provisions. 11 And into whatever town or village you enter, inquire who in it is worthy, and stay there until you depart. 12 And when you[g] enter into the house, greet it. 13 And if the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it, but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. 14 And whoever does not welcome you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet as you[h] are going out of that house or that[i] town. 15 Truly I say to you, it will be more bearable for the region of Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment than for that town!

Persecution of Disciples Predicted

16 “Behold, I am sending you out like sheep in the midst of wolves. Therefore be wise as serpents and innocent as doves. 17 But beware of people, because they will hand you over to councils, and they will flog you in their synagogues. 18 And you will be brought before both governors and kings because of me, for a witness to them and to the Gentiles. 19 But whenever they hand you over, do not be anxious how to speak[j] or what you should say, for what you should say will be given to you at that hour. 20 For you are not the ones who are speaking, but the Spirit of your Father who is speaking through you.

21 “And brother will hand over brother to death, and a father his children, and children will rise up against 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—this one will be saved. 23 And whenever they persecute you in this town, flee to another, for truly I say to you, you will never finish going through the towns of Israel until the Son of Man comes.

24 “A disciple is not superior to his teacher, nor a slave superior to his master. 25 It is enough for the disciple that he become like his teacher, and the slave like his master. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebul, how much more the members of his household?

Fear God Rather Than People

26 “Therefore do not be afraid of them, because nothing is hidden that will not be revealed, and nothing secret that will not become known. 27 What I say to you in the dark, tell in the light, and what you hear in your ear, proclaim on the housetops. 28 And do not be afraid of those who kill the body but are not able to kill the soul, but instead be afraid of the one who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. 29 Are not two sparrows sold for a penny?[k] And one of them will not fall to the ground without the knowledge and consent[l] of your Father. 30 And even the hairs of your head are all numbered! 31 Therefore do not be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.

32 “Therefore everyone who acknowledges me before people, I also will acknowledge him before my Father who is in heaven. 33 But whoever denies me before people, I also will deny him before my Father who is in heaven.

Not Peace, But a Sword of Divisiveness

34 “Do not think that I have come to bring peace on the earth! I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. 35 For I have come to turn a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. 36 And the enemies of a man will be the members of his household.[m] 37 The one who loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and the one who loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. 38 And whoever does not take up his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39 The one who finds his life will lose it, and the one who loses his life because of me will find it.

On Rewards

40 “The one who receives you receives me, and the one who receives me receives the one who sent me. 41 The one who receives a prophet in the name of a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward, and the one who receives a righteous person in the name of a righteous person will receive a righteous person’s reward. 42 And whoever gives one of these little ones only a cup of cold water to drink in the name of a disciple, truly I say to you, he will never lose his reward.”


  1. Matthew 10:1 Here the direct object is supplied from context in the English translation
  2. Matthew 10:1 Or “every kind of”
  3. Matthew 10:1 Or “every kind of”
  4. Matthew 10:2 Some manuscripts have “and James”
  5. Matthew 10:4 Literally “the Cananean,” but according to BDAG 507 s.v., this term has no relation at all to the geographical terms for Cana or Canaan, but is derived from the Aramaic term for “enthusiast, zealot” (see Luke 6:15; Acts 1:13)
  6. Matthew 10:7 Here “as” is supplied as a component of the participle (“are going”) which is understood as temporal
  7. Matthew 10:12 Here “when” is supplied as a component of the participle (“enter”) which is understood as temporal
  8. Matthew 10:14 Here “as” is supplied as a component of the participle (“are going”) which is understood as temporal
  9. Matthew 10:14 A repetition of “that” is supplied in English; the single Greek term is understood to modify both “house” and “town”
  10. Matthew 10:19 Here “to speak” has been supplied for stylistic reasons, since “how to speak” is more natural in English than “how to say”; in Greek the same verb works with both expressions (“how or what you should say”) and also occurs again at the end of the verse
  11. Matthew 10:29 Literally, “an assarion,” a Roman coin worth about 1/16 of a denarius
  12. Matthew 10:29 Literally “without”; the phrase “the knowledge and consent” is implied when this term is used of God
  13. Matthew 10:36 An allusion to Mic 7:6