Matthew 10

Matthew 10 is the tenth chapter in the Gospel of Matthew in the New Testament section of the Christian Bible. Matthew 10 comes after Jesus had called some of his disciples and before the meeting with the disciples of John the Baptist. This section is also known as the Mission Discourse or the Little Commission, in contrast to the Great Commission . The Little Commission is directed specifically to the Jewish believers of the early church, while the Great Commission is to all nationalities. The Pulpit Commentary suggests that Jesus' message in this discourse "was hardly likely to have been remembered outside Jewish Christian circles".
Matthew names the twelve apostles, or "twelve disciples", in verses 1 to 4 and the remainder of the chapter consists almost entirely of sayings attributed to Jesus. In this chapter, Jesus sends out the apostles to heal and preach throughout the region and gives them careful instruction. Many of the sayings found in Matthew 10 are also found in Luke 10 and the Gospel of Thomas, which is not part of the accepted canon of the New Testament.


The original text was written in Koine Greek. This chapter is divided into 42 verses.

Textual witnesses

Some early manuscripts containing the text of this chapter are:
, Matthew 10:17–11:15

The twelve

The text in verse 1 refers to "his twelve disciples". Verse 2 calls them "the twelve apostles":
Verse 5 refers to them simply as "the twelve".

Verse 10

Cross reference: Mark 6:8–9; Luke 9:3
Commentator Dale Allison suggests that "your peace" refers to the peace promised "for the eschatological age" : How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who proclaims peace. "The gift of peace is not just a social convention: the apostolic greeting should be understood as a sign of the inbreaking of the kingdom."

Verse 18

Cross references:

Verse 21

This prophecy of family strife is based upon, which was thought to describe the discord of the latter days. The conviction that the great tribulation would turn those of the same household against one another was widespread.

Verse 34

This is a much-discussed passage, often explained in terms of the "apocalyptic-eschatological" context of the 1st century.
R. T. France explains the verse, in context with the subsequent verse 35: "The sword Jesus brings is not here military conflict, but, as vv. 35–36 show, a sharp social division which even severs the closest family ties. … Jesus speaks here, as in the preceding and following verses, more of a division in men’s personal response to him."
The text of Matthew's Gospel in the Book of Kells alters gladium, the Vulgate translation of makhairan "sword", to gaudium "joy", resulting in a reading of "I came not to bring peace, but joy".

Verse 38

Matthew 10 contains many parallels found in the Gospel of Thomas.