Summary: How important is it to be a welcoming church? How thankful are we for those who receive us?
How important is it to be a welcoming church? How thankful are we for those who receive us? How do we receive Gospel preachers, each other, and newcomers?
Let’s become more welcoming.
We will look at Matthew 10:40-42 and hospitality.
2 Kings 4:8-17 The Shunammite Woman
In 2 Kings 4:8-17 we read of a wonderful story of hospitality. Shunem (Sulam) still exists today, south of Nazareth. A woman of great and noble stature lived there and invited the prophet Elisha to eat with her and her husband. Her home became a regular stopping place as Elisha passed by. Her hospitality was so rare and great that she and her husband went to considerable trouble and expense building a spare room for him to overnight on his journeys. Asking his assistant Gehazi what he could do to repay the woman’s kindness, he found out she was childless. She bore a child at the appointed time. God rewards hospitality.
Matthew 10:40 Receiving the Son
Greek notes: He who receives you (?µ??, ee-MAHS - plural accusative - That means all the Apostles, not just some. By extension, does that mean all Christians, not just some?) receives Me, and he who receives Me receives Him who sent (?p?ste??a?t?, ah-poh-STEE-lahn-DAH = apostled) Me.
Sometimes we may be reluctant to allow others to bless us with a gift. Some people have even gotten angry when others give to them. We need to allow others the blessing of blessing us without rejecting their love. In Matthew 10:40 the disciples were taught this by Jesus, when He said, “He who receives you receives Me.” What that means is, when people receive Christians, they are in effect receiving Christ Himself. A compliment is a kind of gift. When someone pays us a compliment bragging is wrong, but so it rejecting it. Simply say, thank you. We need to learn to be thankful receivers as well as givers.
Matthew 10:40 Receiving the Father
Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, Seventh Day churches, some Baptists, some Calvinists and others all claim to be the one true church. How should we treat people of other denominations? Would God call it a sin to exclude those who receive Jesus from sharing in a common communion? What would Jesus say about this? In Matthew 10:40 He said, “he who receives Me receives Him who sent Me.” Why would we not receive anyone who receives Jesus and our heavenly Father? If we receive those who receive Jesus, we receive our Father in heaven. Can we receive each other as fellow believers of the important things and not divide over lesser issues?
Matthew 10:41 Prophets & Righteous People
Greek notes: He who receives a prophet (p??f?t??, proh-FEE-teen = a proclaimer of a divine message, one to whom God reveals His truth, and through whom He speaks. Hence, in the OT prophets their preaching was a prophesying of a salvation and purposes of grace and glory yet to be accomplished, while in the case of the NT prophets their prophesying was a preaching of those purposes of grace already accomplished, and also a foretelling of the purposes of glory which were still future.) in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward. And he who receives a righteous (d??a???, THEE-keh-ohn = just, right) man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward.