Matthew 10:40-42, Whoever welcomes you welcomes me.... for July 2, 2023

Matthew 10:40-42  Whoever welcomes you welcomes me.... (Version: NRSV)

‘Whoever welcomes you welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. Whoever welcomes a prophet in the name of a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward; and whoever welcomes a righteous person in the name of a righteous person will receive the reward of the righteous; and whoever gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones in the name of a disciple—truly I tell you, none of these will lose their reward.’

Alternative translation: Matthew 10:40-42... The one who welcomes you welcomes me... (Version: The Gospels for Hearers

40 The one who welcomes you welcomes me,
and the one who welcomes me welcomes the One who sent me.
The one who welcomes a prophet in the name of a prophet
will receive a prophet's reward.
The one who welcomes a just man in the name of a just man
will receive a just man's reward.
Whoever gives one of these little ones a sip of cool water
simply in the name of a disciple -
I tell you, he will not lose his reward."

From “The Gospel of Matthew”, Chapter 10, verse 40 to Chapter 10, verse 42, in The Gospel for Hearers (Translated from the Koine Greek by Elizabeth B. Edwards, Formatted by the Rev William A. Johnston), 2013, Diangellia Press.

What are the serious issues raised by Matthew 10:40-42?

(An AI robot's response: Note that the robot here provides opinion, not fact and should not be taken as authoratative)

Matthew 10:40-42 is a passage from the New Testament of the Bible that contains teachings of Jesus Christ. It addresses several important issues that can be considered serious and relevant to the teachings of Christianity. Here are some key themes raised by this passage:

  1. Hospitality and welcoming others: Jesus emphasizes the importance of receiving and welcoming others, particularly his disciples or messengers. By saying, "Whoever receives you receives me," Jesus highlights the connection between himself and his followers. This teaching encourages believers to show hospitality, kindness, and acceptance to those who come in the name of Christ. 

  1. Reward for those who assist messengers: Jesus promises a reward to those who receive his disciples or messengers. He assures them that they will receive the same reward as the messengers themselves. This highlights the idea of spiritual interconnectedness and the importance of supporting and aiding those who are doing God's work. 

  1. Prophetic and righteous roles: Jesus indicates that those who receive his messengers in a righteous and prophetic manner will receive a prophet's reward. This suggests that recognizing and embracing God's messengers is a virtuous act that leads to blessings and divine favor. 

  1. Rejection and consequences: On the other hand, Jesus warns of the consequences for those who reject his messengers. He states, "Whoever does not receive you, nor heed your words, as you go out of that house or that city, shake the dust off your feet." This implies that those who refuse to listen to the message of Christ or his followers will face judgment or spiritual consequences.

Overall, this passage highlights the significance of hospitality, the interconnectedness of believers, the rewards for supporting messengers of God, and the consequences of rejecting their message. It encourages followers of Christ to embrace their role as messengers and to treat others with kindness and acceptance, knowing that their actions have spiritual implications.

Some questions raised by the text:

  • Who is Jesus talking to?
  • Who was the evangelist talking to?
  • What is the point that Matthew is trying to get across by telling this story?
  • Who are the important "actors" in this passage? Is it the disciples, or is it those who provide them with hospitality?
  • What do we want to talk about here? Is it about recognition? Is it about hospitality? Is it about sorting out the goodies and the baddies?
  • Is there "good news" to be found in this passage? Does it help us to work out what counts as a good life?
  • A cornerstone of our faith is that God's love is unconditional -- and yet this passage implies that we need to behave appropriately if we want to receive our reward. How can we reconcile these two ideas?
  • Small acts of generosity and small acts of compassion -- are these the markers of our faith?


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