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The IVP New Testament Commentary Series – Opposition from Unconverted Family Members (10:34-37)
Opposition from Unconverted Family Members (10:34-37)

Although Jesus values families (5:27-32; 15:4-6; 19:4-9), the division his mission brings is particularly evident in families (compare 10:21; 1 Cor 7:16; of course more people prefer to quote Acts 16:31). Jesus' example demonstrates how this division is accomplished: although we are "harmless" (Mt 10:16; 12:19-20), God's agents proclaim the kingdom uncompromisingly and thus face hostility from others (13:57). Jesus' mission separates us from the values of our society, and society responds with persecution. Jesus selects these specific examples of in-laws (mother-in-law and daughter-in-law) because young couples generally lived with the man's family

Jesus matters more than the approval or even the civility of our family (10:37). Many viewed honoring one's parents as the highest social obligation (Ep. Arist. 228; Jos. Apion 2.206; Ps-Phocyl. 8); for many, God alone was worthy of greater honor (Deut 13:6; 33:9; 2 Macc 7:22-23).

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