Matthew 10:21 – “‘Now brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child; and children will rise up against parents and cause them to be put to death.”
OK. Strange verse alert. Let’s see where this one takes us.
A hand-picked group of twelve men are being sent by Jesus, into Galilee, to work miracles and preach His message (Matthew 10:5–8). He began by giving them specific instructions for an immediate mission to the towns of Israel (Matthew 10:9–15). Now, He is describing a future season after His own death, resurrection, and return to heaven. In that time, these twelve apostles will be arrested for speaking on His behalf. They will appear before courts and tribunals and kings and governors. This will give them the opportunity to tell Jesus’ story and preach the gospel to people at every level of society (Matthew 10:16–20).
Now Jesus is emphasizing how fierce the opposition to Him and His message will become. It will not just create conflict with those in authority; the gospel message of Jesus will also bitterly divide families. In some places, men will turn over their own brothers to the authorities to carry out their death sentence against Christians. Fathers will do the same to their children. Children will do likewise to parents.
To be clear, it will not be the Jesus followers turning their family members over to be killed. It will be family members who are so deeply opposed to the teaching of Jesus’ kingdom that they will turn on family members who express faith in Christ. This happened during the time of the apostles and the early church, and it continues to happen today in many parts of the world. Sadly, the unbelieving world will often respond to the gospel with hate and anger (John 15:18–20; 1 Peter 4:3–4; Matthew 5:11–12).
Very interesting and crazy relevant. How many of you have family members that don’t understand your relationship with Jesus? All of us….