These twelve Jesus sent out with the following instructions: “Go nowhere among the Gentiles, and enter no town of the Samaritans, but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. As you go, proclaim the good news, ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near.’ Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons. You received without payment; give without payment. Take no gold, or silver, or copper in your belts, no bag for your journey, or two tunics, or sandals, or a staff; for laborers deserve their food. Whatever town or village you enter, find out who in it is worthy, and stay there until you leave. As you enter the house, greet it. If the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it; but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet as you leave that house or town. Truly I tell you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment than for that town. “See, I am sending you out like sheep into the midst of wolves; so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.(Matthew 10:5-16, NRSV)
This passage is interesting. Jesus sends out the disciples only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Do not go to the Gentiles or to towns of Samaria, but only to the lost sheep of the House of Israel.
But we have to understand the community to which Matthew was written. This was a very Jewish community, and there for they would see this as the mission of the Messiah. To go to the house of Israel.
And once the house of Israel is in order we can go out further, but first we get our house in order.
So go and declare my message to all of our house, and help them to see that God is with them…
And I am sending you out like sheep among wolves… For they should be ready for this, but probably will not be.
But always go and know that I go with you.