Jesus was speaking His commission to the apostles. He told them to annouce the arrival of the kingdom of heaven, to heal the sick, raise the dead and cast out demons. Along with that He told them something else…
Ask the children…
What did Jesus say the apostles were to be like?
“‘Look, I am sending you out as sheep among wolves.’” (Matthew 10:16)
What a strange thing to tell the apostles. Sheep are typically defenseless and need to be led by others. Wolves are those that prey on sheep. What was Jesus saying?
He was telling the apostles that they would need be like sheep who are follow the good shepherd. Rather than devising their own plans and strategies, they were to listen to God and go wherever He told them too even when it appeared to be dangerous. Jesus was guaranteeing to the apostles when He spoke of wolves that there would be many out in the world who would want to destroy them. They should expect danger and maybe even death. This was no mission for the fainthearted. Notice also that sheep do not fight back against the wolves. The wolves (religous leaders) were battling to rule over men while sheep (the apostles) weren’t to rule over anyone but to lead them to safely into a relationship with Jesus.
Ask your children if they have ever faced persecution for their faith? Has anyone made fun of them or attacked them in some other way for their faith? Remind them that they can expect this from the world but also remind them that Jesus will never leave them or forsake them.
Feel free to share your own stories below in the comments section.
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