Matthew 10:42
And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones because he is My disciple, truly I tell you, he will never lose his reward."
A Good PassportMatthew 10:42
A Small Act the Embodiment of Self-SacrificeMatthew 10:42
Christ's Appreciation of Little ServicesA Hannay.Matthew 10:42
Giving to the Needy Giving to ChristMatthew 10:42
Slight Services for ChristJ. Gage Rigg, B. AMatthew 10:42
The Cup of Cold WaterW. D. Horwood.Matthew 10:42
Zeal for the Young RewardedH. Madgin.Matthew 10:42
The Commanding of the TwelveP.C. Barker Matthew 10:1-42
The Mission of the GospelJ.A. Macdonald Matthew 10:34-42
Receiving ChristW.F. Adeney Matthew 10:40-42

Jesus concludes his charge to the twelve on the eve of their mission with words that have more reference to others, with a promise of blessing to those who shall give a good reception to the apostles. Earlier he said that if any rejected the messengers of Christ they were to shake off the very dust of their feet as a testimony against the inhospitable people; and now he concludes his address by cheering words on the other side, generously recognizing a friendly reception of his disciples. Local and temporal as was the immediate occasion of our Lord's remarks, they are evidently of lasting application.

I. THE BROTHERHOOD OF CHRIST LEADS HIM TO REGARD KINDNESS TO HIS DISCIPLES EXACTLY AS THOUGH IT WERE OFFERED TO HIMSELF. He is not the Oriental monarch treating his subjects as a race of slaves. He is completely one with his people. Whatever hurts them hurts him; whatever cheers them pleases him. There is a Christian solidarity. The benefit or injury of one member affects the whole body (1 Corinthians 12:26). But if other members of the body are thus affected, much more will the Head, which is in direct communication with the whole, be affected.

1. This is meant as a great encouragement for the servants of Christ. They are not deserted by Christ; he is in all their work, and he feels keenly every kindness or unkindness offered to them.

2. This suggests how we may all have the unspeakable privilege of receiving Christ. Not only a prophet or an apostle, but a little child, may bring Christ to our home. Receiving the least of Christ's disciples for his sake, we receive him.


1. Receiving Christ's disciples. He does not speak here of indiscriminate hospitality, nor of the neighbourly love which he elsewhere commends. Here is a specially Christian action. Much is made in the New Testament of brotherly love - love to fellow-Christians. It is a great privilege to be able to help one of Christ's own little ones.

2. Receiving them in Christ's Name. Thrice does our Lord refer to the conditions of "the name" - "the name of a prophet," "the name of a righteous man," "the name of a disciple." This points to a set purpose in the hospitality. The prophet is received as a prophet because we wish to honour prophets; the righteous man as a righteous man because we desire to help the righteous; the Christian disciple as a disciple, for Christ's sake. This is more than mere kindness; it is a distinct recognition of the claim of Christ. We are encouraged to show kindness for Christ's sake, that we may please him - receiving the envoy for the sake of the King.


1. In receiving, Christ. They are treated just as though they had shown hospitality to the Lord Jesus Christ himself. But the reward of such hospitality is in the very coming of Christ. When he entered the house of Zacchaeus salvation came there. To have Christ within us is to have a better blessing than could be got out of all the wealth of the Indies or all the joy of a Christless paradise.

2. In receiving God. This thought is nearly akin to the teaching of the Fourth Gospel (see John 14:9, 10). We do not merely receive Christ as a brother-man. Beneath the veil of the humanity of Jesus the very glory of God enters the soul. Thus he who receives a child lop Christ's sake is blessed by having God in his heart, and then his heart becomes a heaven. - W.F.A.

A cup of cold water.
The doings of this life are had in remembrance: that no humble action in its relation to high principles is lost; but is retained in a future judgment.


1. Our Saviour points out this by three examples.

2. The duty derives its importance from God's omnipresence and omniscience. The cup of cold water comes under the Divine notice.


1. The history of nations and individuals proves how the past acts upon the future.

2. The promise of reward by Christ shows how every simple act done with reference to Himself is made to react upon ourselves in a way we should not anticipate apart from revelation.

3. Things done out of Christ, having no connection with His love, will perish.

(W. D. Horwood.)

St. Martin, before he was baptized into the faith of Christ, and while still a soldier, showed a rare instance of love and charity. In the depth of winter, a beggar, clothed in rags, asked an alms of him for the love of God. Silver and gold he had none. His soldier's cloak was all he had to give. He drew his sword, cut it in half, gave one portion to the poor man, and was content himself with the other. And of him it may be truly said, "He had his reward." That night, in a vision, he beheld our blessed Lord upon His throne, and all the host of heaven standing on His right; hand and His left. And as Martin looked more steadfastly on the Son of God, he saw Him to be arrayed in his own half-cloak; and he heard Him say, "This hath Martin, unbaptized, given to Me."


1. In their inherent depravity and their solemn destiny as intended for a state of unending being.

2. In their natural condition of helplessness and weakness amid the circumstances of peril to which they are exposed in their progress through the world.

3. In their influence for good or evil upon the world, and the final account they shall give at the bar of God.


1. They shall have their reward in the lovely and appropriate fruits with which the objects of their compassionate regard shall be adorned.

2. In the beneficial influence they shall thus originate and perpetuate.

3. In the approbation of their Saviour and their God.

(H. Madgin.)

Some few years ago, three small children — a boy and two girls, aged respectively ten, seven, and four — arrived in St. Louis, having travelled thither all the way from Kulin in Germany, without any escort or protection beyond a New Testament and their own innocence and helplessness. Their parents, who had emigrated from the Fatherland and settled in Missouri, had left them in charge of an aunt, to whom, in due time, they forwarded a sum of money sufficient to pay the passage of the little ones to their new home across the Atlantic. As the children could not speak a word of any language but German, it is doubtful whether they would ever have reached their destination at all, had not their aunt, with a woman's ready wit, provided them with a passport, addressed, not so much to any earthly authority, as to Christian mankind generally. Before taking her leave of the children, the aunt gave the elder girl a New Testament, instructing her to show it to every- person who might accost her during the voyage, and especially to call their attention to the first leaf of the book. Upon that leaf the wise and good woman had written the names of the three children, and this simple statement: "Their father and mother in America are anxiously awaiting their arrival at Sedalia, Missouri." This was followed by the irresistible appeal — their guide, safeguard, and interpreter throughout a journey over sea and land of more than 4,000 miles — "Verily I say... unto Me." Many were the little acts of kindness shown to the little travellers, many the hands held out to smooth their journey, by those who read that appeal; and at length they reached their parents in perfect health and safety.

1. Because they often have great results. A cup of cold water is mentioned here; we can hardly mention a service which one would more naturally think of as a little service, than the giving of a cup of cold water; and yet it may be great in its results. It may allay the fever, and drive away the coming madness of the man who is consumed by thirst — there may be life in a cup of cold water. The fainting traveller in the desert, where the greedy sun has licked all the water up, would die but for the cup of cold water which a provident pilgrim brings to him. Many a castaway on the ocean, drifting on his raft — many a wounded soldier, writhing among the heaps of the smitten on the battle-field — has spent his last breath in crying for a cup of cold water; and a cup of water given at a critical moment would have saved life.

2. When they are the best a man can render.

3. When they are truly rendered to Him. The giving of the cup of cold water, you observe, acquired its character of moral worth from its being given "in the name of a disciple" — given for Christ's sake. It is possible to work in the kingdom of Jesus Christ, and not serve Christ at all. A soldier may go out in his country's wars, and make for himself, by his courage and success, an imperishable name, and yet never really serve his country or his king, but only himself; his one impulse throughout may be not loyalty, not patriotism, but the desire of fame, the desire of power, a motive which never takes the man out of himself.

(A Hannay.)

1. Slight services are often all we have it in our power to render. What can I do for Christ?

2. Slight services are sufficient to show love for the Saviour.

3. Slight services, after all, may be invaluable services — trivial — "cup of cold water."

4. Slight services shall be richly requited — "He shall in no wise lose his reward."

(J. Gage Rigg, B. A,)

In Bonar and MacCheyne's narrative of their mission to the Jews in Palestine (Edinburgh, 1839), an incident occurs, illustrative of this passage. "During our ramble" (near Gaza), "... a kind Arab came forward from his tent as we passed, offering us the refreshment of a drink of water, saying, 'Jesherhetu mole?' — 'Will you drink water?'" The promise of our Lord seems to refer to cases like this, where the individual, unasked, seeks out objects on whom to show kindness. The least desire to bless shall not lose its reward. We all know how precious a gift a cup of cold water may be, and what self-denial it may involve, from the well-known story of Sir Philip Sidney and the wounded soldier on the battle-field. Sidney, mortally wounded on the field of Zutphen, was about to drink a glass of water which some one had humanely brought him to assuage his agonizing thirst. Just, however, as he was about to press it to his lips, he saw a soldier, in like plight with himself, looking wistfully at it. Unable to resist the pleading eyes of his fellow-sufferer, Sidney handed the glass to him, exclaiming, "Thy necessity is greater than mine." It is well-known that in Western Australia there is a great want of water, the rivers in that part of the island-continent being few. Mrs. Millett, in her "Life in an Australian Parsonage," describes the feeling of distress, approaching to despair, experienced by a mother and her child who had missed their way in a remote part of the colony, and who had the dreary prospect, as night came on, of being many hours before they could hope to assuage their thirst; and. their astonishment and delight, when, in that remote region, they saw, suddenly emerging from the trees, a woman and a girl each carrying a bucket. "Perhaps," says Mrs. Millett, "my friend mentally compared the incident to that of all angel's visit, when the strangers showed her a spring at no great distance, whither they were already on their way to fetch water, having already walked two miles from their own home." We ourselves remember with pleasure a hot summer evening many years ago, when, tired with a long walk in the neighbourhood of Heidelberg, we asked the mistress of a picturesque German cottage for a glass of water. Readily was it brought, and the peasant-woman, on our thanking her, replied in a tone of true courtesy, "Masser haben wir genug." — "We have sufficient water." But, as Jeremy Taylor says, he will have no reward, who gives only water, when his neighbour needs wine or a cordial, and he could give it.

Alphaeus, Andrew, Bartholomew, Beelzebub, James, Jesus, John, Judas, Lebbaeus, Matthew, Peter, Philip, Simon, Thaddaeus, Thomas, Zabdi, Zebedee
Capernaum, Gomorrah, Sodom
Anyone, Certainly, Cold, Cup, Disciple, Drink, Gives, Lose, Ones, Reward, Solemnly, Truly, Truth, Verily, Wise
1. Jesus sends out his apostles, enabling them with power to do miracles;
5. giving them their charge, teaches them;
16. comforts them against persecutions;
40. and promises a blessing to those who receive them.

Dictionary of Bible Themes
Matthew 10:42

     2045   Christ, knowledge of
     4293   water
     4806   cold
     5283   cup
     5603   wages
     5809   compassion, human
     8245   ethics, incentives
     8436   giving, of possessions

Matthew 10:40-42

     5274   credit
     8444   honouring God

Matthew 10:41-42

     5500   reward, God's people

January 24. "Freely Ye have Received, Freely Give" (Matt. x. 8).
"Freely ye have received, freely give" (Matt. x. 8). When God does anything marked and special for our souls, or bodies, He intends it as a sacred trust for us to communicate to others. "Freely ye have received, freely give." It has pleased the Master in these closing days of the dispensation to reveal Himself in peculiar blessing to the hearts of His chosen disciples in all parts of the Christian Church; but this is intended to be communicated to a still wider circle, and every one of us who has
Rev. A. B. Simpson—Days of Heaven Upon Earth

A Life Lost and Found [Footnote: Preached after the Funeral of Mr. F. W. Crossley. ]
'He that loseth his life for My sake shall find it.' --MATT. x. 39. My heart impels me to break this morning my usual rule of avoiding personal references in the pulpit. Death has been busy in our own congregation this last week, and yesterday we laid in the grave all that was mortal of a man to whom Manchester owes more than it knows. Mr. Crossley has been for thirty years my close and dear friend. He was long a member of this church and congregation. I need not speak of his utter unselfishness,
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

The Obscure Apostles
'These twelve Jesus sent forth.'--MATT. x. 5. And half of 'these twelve' are never heard of as doing any work for Christ. Peter and James and John we know; the other James and Judas have possibly left us short letters; Matthew gives us a Gospel; and of all the rest no trace is left. Some of them are never so much as named again, except in the list at the beginning of the Acts of the Apostles; and none of them except the three who 'seemed to be pillars' appear to have been of much importance in the
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

The Widened Mission, Its Perils and Defences
'Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves; be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves. 17. But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues; 18. And ye shall be brought before governors and kings for My sake, for a testimony against them and the Gentiles. 19. But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak. 20. For it
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Like Teacher, Like Scholar
'The disciple is not above his master, nor the servant above his lord. 26. It is enough for the disciple that he be as his master, and the servant as his lord.' --MATT. x. 24, 25. These words were often on Christ's lips. Like other teachers, He too had His favourite sayings, the light of which He was wont to flash into many dark places. Such a saying, for instance, was, 'To him that hath shall be given.' Such a saying is this of my text; and probably several other of our Lord's utterances, which
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

The King's Charge to his Ambassadors
'Whosoever therefore shall confess Me before men, him will I confess also before My Father which is in heaven. 33. But whosoever shall deny Me before men, him will I also deny before My Father which is in heaven. 34. Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. 35. For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. 36. And man's foes shall be they of his own household.
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

The Greatest in the Kingdom, and their Reward
'He that receiveth a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet's reward; and he that receiveth a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man's reward. 42. And whosoever shall give to drink unto one of these little ones a cup of cold water only in the name of a disciple, verily I say unto you, he shall in no wise lose his reward.' --MATT. x. 41, 42. There is nothing in these words to show whether they refer to the present or to the future. We shall probably
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Christ's Charge to his Heralds
'These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, do not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: 6. But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 7. And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. 8. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give. 9. Provide neither gold, nor silver, nor brass in your purses, 10. Nor scrip for your journey, neither two coats, neither
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

February the Second How to Approach a Crisis
"It shall be given you in that same hour." --MATTHEW x. 16-28. And so I am not to worry about the coming crisis! "God never is before His time, and never is behind!" When the hour is come, I shall find that the great Host hath made "all things ready." When the crisis comes He will tell me how to rest. It is a great matter to know just how to rest--how to be quiet when "all without tumultuous seems." We irritate and excite our souls about the coming emergency, and we approach it with worn and
John Henry Jowett—My Daily Meditation for the Circling Year

May the Sixteenth the Details of Providence
"The very hairs of your head are all numbered." --MATTHEW x. 24-31. Providence goes into details. Sometimes, in our human intercourse, we cannot see the trees for the wood. We cannot see the individual sheep for the flock. We cannot see the personal soul for the masses. We are blinded by the bigness of things; we cannot see the individual blades of grass because of the field. Now God's vision is not general, it is particular. There are no "masses" to the Infinite. "He calleth His own sheep by
John Henry Jowett—My Daily Meditation for the Circling Year

Christ Bringing a Sword.
(Christmas Sermon.) "Glory to God in the highest, peace on earth, and goodwill towards men!" TEXT: MATT. x. 34. "Think not that I came to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword." HOW wonderfully out of harmony these words sound with the angelic greeting that we have just heard; threatening to rob us of all the joy and blessedness of this holy season! For is the sword pre-eminently the glory of God? and if it rages anew, is that a special delight to men? When the message has come
Friedrich Schleiermacher—Selected Sermons of Schleiermacher

On the Words of the Gospel, Matt. x. 16, "Behold, I Send You Forth as Sheep in the Midst of Wolves," Etc. Delivered on a Festival
1. When the Holy Gospel was read, Brethren, ye heard how our Lord Jesus Christ strengthened His Martyrs by His teaching, saying, "Behold, I send you forth as lambs in the midst of wolves." [2215] Now consider, my Brethren, what he does. If but one wolf come among many sheep, be they ever so many thousands, they will all be put to confusion by one wolf in the midst of them: and though all may not be torn, yet all are frightened. What manner of design is this then, what manner of counsel, what manner
Saint Augustine—sermons on selected lessons of the new testament

On the Words of the Gospel, Matt. x. 28, "Be not Afraid of them that Kill the Body. " Delivered on a Festival of Martyrs.
1. The Divine oracles which have just been read teach us in fearing not to fear, and in not fearing to fear. Ye observed when the Holy Gospel was being read, that our Lord God before He died for us, would have us to be firm; and this by admonishing us "not" to fear, and withal to fear. For he said, "Fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul." See where He advised us not to fear. See now where He advised us to fear. "But," saith he, "fear Him who hath power to destroy both
Saint Augustine—sermons on selected lessons of the new testament

Confessing Christ an Indispensable Duty.
"--If we deny him, he also will deny us." This is predicated of Christ; and looks forward to the day when all mankind will stand before him as their judge. Denying Christ is here declared to be a mortal sin. Those found guilty of it will hear that sentence--"Depart ye cursed!" But this is to be understood only of a persevering denial of him. Those who turn by a timely repentance, will find mercy. This is true of every sin. But repentance may be too late. It must antecede death, or it will be of
Andrew Lee et al—Sermons on Various Important Subjects

The Trial of Peter's Love to Christ.
"So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, 'Simon son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these?' He saith unto him, 'Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee.' He saith unto him, 'Feed my lambs.' He saith to him again a second time, 'Simon son of Jonas, lovest thou me?' He saith unto him. 'Yea Lord; thou knowest that I love thee.' He saith unto him, 'Feed my sheep.' He saith unto him the third time, 'Simon son of Jonas, lovest thou me?' Peter was grieved, because he said to him the third
Andrew Lee et al—Sermons on Various Important Subjects

Enduring to the End
But, my brethren, how glorious is the sight of the man who does endure to the end as a minister of Christ. I have photographed upon my heart just now, the portrait of one very, very dear to me, and I think I may venture to produce a rough sketch of him, as no mean example of how honorable it is to endure to the end. This man began while yet a youth to preach the Word. Sprung of ancestors who had loved the Lord and served his Church, he felt the glow of holy enthusiasm. Having proved his capabilities,
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 10: 1864

Now, when we look abroad into the world we see, as we think, such abundant proofs that there is a God, that we are apt to treat a man who denies the existence of a God with very little respect or patience. We believe him to be wilfully blind, for we see God's name so legible upon the very surface of creation, that we cannot have patience with him if he dares to deny the existence of a Creator. And in the matter of salvation: we have each of us seen in our own salvation such positive marks of the
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 4: 1858

The Meteor Shower (Preached at the Chapel Royal, St. James's, Nov. 26, 1866. )
ST. MATTHEW x. 29, 30. Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. It will be well for us to recollect, once for all, who spoke these words; even Jesus Christ, who declared that He was one with God the Father; Jesus Christ, whom His apostles declared to be the Creator of the universe. If we believe this, as Christian men, it will be well for us to take our Lord's account of a universe
Charles Kingsley—The Water of Life and Other Sermons

God's Works of Providence
Rom. xi. 36.--"For of him, and through him, and to him are all things, to whom be glory for ever, Amen."--Psal. ciii. 19.--"The Lord hath prepared his throne in the heavens and his kingdom ruleth over all."--Matt. x. 29.--"Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? And one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father." There is nothing more commonly confessed in words, than that the providence of God reaches to all the creatures and their actions, but I believe there is no point of religion
Hugh Binning—The Works of the Rev. Hugh Binning

The Final Unmasking.
For there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; and hid, that shall not be known.--Matthew x. 26; Luke xii. 2. God is not a God that hides, but a God that reveals. His whole work in relation to the creatures he has made--and where else can lie his work?--is revelation--the giving them truth, the showing of himself to them, that they may know him, and come nearer and nearer to him, and so he have his children more and more of companions to him. That we are in the dark about anything is
George MacDonald—Unspoken Sermons

The Disciple, -- Master, in These Days Some Learned Men and their Followers Regard Thy...
The Disciple,--Master, in these days some learned men and their followers regard Thy atonement and the redemption by blood as meaningless and futile, and say that Christ was only a great teacher and example for our spiritual life, and that salvation and eternal happiness depend on our own efforts and good deeds. The Master,--1. Never forget that spiritual and religious ideas are connected less with the head than with the heart, which is the temple of God, and when the heart is filled with the presence
Sadhu Sundar Singh—At The Master's Feet

The Completion of Our Saviour's Prophecies Confirmed Pagans in their Belief of the Gospel.
I. The completion of our Saviour's Prophecies confirmed Pagans in their belief of the gospel. II. Origen's observation on our Saviour's disciples being brought before kings and governors; III. On their being persecuted for their religion; IV. On their preaching the gospel to all nations. V. On the destruction of Jerusalem, and ruin of the Jewish oeconomy. VI. These arguments strengthened by what has happened since Origen's time. I. THE second of these extraordinary means, of great use to the learned
Joseph Addison—The Evidences of the Christian Religion, with Additional Discourses

After Prayer Jesus Selects Twelve Apostles.
(Near Capernaum.) ^A Matt. X. 2-4; ^B Mark III. 13-19; ^C Luke VI. 12-16. ^c 12 And it came to pass in these days, that he went out into the mountain ^b 13 And he goeth up into the mountain, ^c to pray; and he continued all night in prayer to God. [It was a momentous occasion. He was about to choose those to whom he was to entrust the planting, organizing, and training of that church which was to be the purchase of his own blood. Jesus used such important crises, not as occasions for anxiety and
J. W. McGarvey—The Four-Fold Gospel

Nor do they Attend to This, that if Another Should Say...
3. Nor do they attend to this, that if another should say, that the Lord indeed, speaking in parables and in similitudes concerning spiritual food and clothing, did warn that not on these accounts should His servants be solicitous; (as He saith, "When they shall drag you to judgment-seats, take no thought what ye shall speak. For it will be given you in that hour what ye shall speak: but it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father that speaketh in you." [2479] For the discourse of spiritual
St. Augustine—Of the Work of Monks.

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