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SCRIPTURE REFERENCES FOR THIS SERMON:

Matthew 10:1-20

10:1 Jesus called his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits so they could cast them out and heal every kind of disease and sickness. 2 Now these are the names of the twelve apostles: first, Simon (called Peter), and Andrew his brother; James son of Zebedee and John his brother; 3 Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; 4 Simon the Zealot and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.

5 Jesus sent out these twelve, instructing them as follows: “Do not go on a road that leads to Gentile regions and do not enter any Samaritan town. 6 Go instead to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 7 As you go, preach this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven is near!’ 8 Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons. Freely you received, freely give. 9 Do not take gold, silver, or copper in your belts, 10 no bag for the journey, or an extra tunic, or sandals or staff, for the worker deserves his provisions. 11 Whenever you enter a town or village, find out who is worthy there and stay with them until you leave. 12 As you enter the house, greet those within it. 13 And if the house is worthy, let your peace come on it, but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. 14 And if anyone will not welcome you or listen to your message, shake the dust off your feet as you leave that house or that town. 15 I tell you the truth, it will be more bearable for the region of Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment than for that town!

16 “I am sending you out like sheep surrounded by wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves. 17 Beware of people, because they will hand you over to councils and flog you in their synagogues. 18 And you will be brought before governors and kings because of me, as a witness to them and to the Gentiles. 19 Whenever they hand you over for trial, do not worry about how to speak or what to say, for what you should say will be given to you at that time. 20 For it is not you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.