Summary: Jesus had personally demonstrated His authority previously in Matthew. He now delegates that same authority to His apostles so that they may carry out His ministry to the world.
MATTHEW 10: 1-6 [THE MESSIAH REVEALED]
THE TWELVE APOSTLES
Chapter 10 is a transition in Jesus' training of the twelve. Until this time they had been observers with little involvement in the miracles or teachings, Here they are commissioned and sent out with authority to do what they had seen their Master do and to proclaim what they had heard Him proclaim.
In this the second of Matthew's five discourses, Jesus instructs, prepares, empowers and encourages His disciples for both immediate and future ministry. Jesus had personally demonstrated His authority previously in Matthew. He now delegates that same authority to His disciples so that they may carry out His ministry to the world (CIT).
I. AUTHORITY DELEGATED, 1.
II. THE TWELVE APOSTLES, 2- 4.
III THE LOST SHEEP, 5- 6.
After asking all His disciples to pray for workers, Jesus summons twelve of them in verse 1. "Jesus summoned His twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every kind of disease and every kind of sickness.”
Jesus now moves forward to prepare His disciples to bring in His abundant harvest Jesus' training and sending out the twelve to multiply His ministry is motivated by His heart wrenching compassion for people without a shepherd.
The twelve disciples, who had been chosen earlier after a night of prayer and had been with Jesus, are now officially summoned [proskaleo]. Now after a time of instruction and training something significant was about to occur. Because of Jesus compassion for the masses they were going to be sent on their first mission. This would be no ordinary preaching mission since Jesus also extended power, or “authority” [exousia] to them. This authority gave them the right to represent Him and perform miraculous ministry. This delegated authority "is the same authority Jesus demonstrated through His teaching in Chapters 5-7 and through His miracles in Chapter 8-9.” [Weber, Stuart. Holman NT Commentary. 2000. Broadman & Holma The Bible does not give us many details concerning Jesus' 12 apostles probably b/c there weren't many impressive details to tell. Jesus called people from all walks of life - fishermen, political activists, tax collectors. He called common people; rich & poor; educated & uneducated. It was more their availability that their ability.
n. Nashville, TN. p. 139-140.] This authority applies to every kind of disease and every kind of sickness. "The twelve are truly representing their Master, for they are doing what He Himself is doing and what they have been ordered to do, in the same manner as Jesus Himself represents the Father (John 5: 19)." Hendricksen, William. The Gospel According to Matthew. 1973 Baker Book. Grand Rapids, MI. P. 450.] Their miracle-working ministry was to attest to the legitimate claim of Jesus to be the Messiah.
The authority Jesus delegated here is the same authority He would bestow upon His Great Commission disciples in Matthew 28:18-20. It is His empowering them and us to heal hurts and be fishers of men (4:19). A difference is that Jesus commissions the twelve to go to the lost sheep of Israel alone. In chapter 28 His commission extends to all peoples or nations.
II. THE TWELVE APOSTLES, 2- 4.
Verses 2, 3, and 4 name the twelve Apostles. “Now the names of the twelve apostles are these: Thee first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; and James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, Philip and Bartholomew, Thomas and Matthew the tax collector, James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; Simon the Zealot, and Judas Iscariot, the one who betrayed Him.”
These names are recorded to their great honor; yet they had more reason to rejoice that their names were written in heaven, while the high and mighty names of the great ones of the earth are buried in the dust. Matthew uses the title or technical term apostle for the first time to indicate a significant change in these disciples' roles. The word is a transliteration of the Greek word apostolos which means one sent on a mission as a delegate, envoy, representative, or messenger for another. Luke 6:13 states it was Jesus Himself who named them apostles. There seems to be a clear distinction between the twelve (which will eventually include Paul as substitute for Judas) and the other apostles [l Cor. 15:5 & 7 indicates the twelve were distinguished from the others gifted as apostles], and the disciples [mathetai] who represent all believers. The number twelve is significant finding their counterpart in the twelve tribes of Israel. From their ministry a new Israel, or the church, would be formed.
[The Twelve made up the body of authoritative leaders in the church. James, the brother of Jesus (Gal. 1:19), Silvanus (1 Thess. 1:1), Andronicus and Junia (Rom. 16:7), Barnabas and Paul (Acts 14:4, 14), and others are designated “apostles,” though not in the same technical sense that the Twelve are. Peter specifies that an apostle must be an eyewitness of Jesus’ life and activity from the time of His baptism to the resurrection /ascension (Acts 1:22).]