Matthew explains the ethics of the kingdom (Mt 5-7), relationships in the kingdom (13), and the presence (13) and future (23-25) of the kingdom; but he does so to disciples whom he expects to further propagate the message of the kingdom (10). Just as Jesus carries on John's message (3:2; 4:17), so will his disciples carry on his (10:7; 28:19). His followers must carry on his mission of healing (9:35) because the laborers are so few (9:37). Matthew records the words of Jesus in this chapter, like those in the Sermon on the Mount, not for merely historical interest but to encourage fellow disciples in the period between the first and second comings of Jesus.
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