Our Mission as Christ’s Apostles

Matthew 10: 1-7
Gn 41:55-57; 42:5-7.17-24 / Ps 33

. . . go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And preach as you go, saying, `The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’
(Matthew 10:7)

Blessed are those God sends to preach
The Good News of Christ’s salvation;
Like His apostles they will reach
Their heavenly destination.

Jesus summoned His twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every disease and every infirmity. The names of the twelve apostles are these: first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zeb’edee, and John his brother; Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; Simon the Cananaean, and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him. These twelve Jesus sent out, charging them, “Go nowhere among the Gentiles, and enter no Samaritan town, but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And preach as you go, saying, `The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ (Matthew 10:1-7)

Reflection

July is usually the month of mission, and here in our BCBP community, it is the time when we start our Brotherhood’s Christian Life Program, a 9-week seminar wherein sponsored participants are immersed in the values of Jesus Christ, and led to understand our true purpose in life. Due to a number of other programs and activities, our CLP this year has been moved to the first Saturday of August.

In today’s Gospel, Jesus hand-picked His twelve apostles for the mission of healing the sick and setting free those possessed by evil spirits. He empowered them for this mission of proclaiming the Good News of salvation. The apostles were just simple folk who did not know what Jesus had planned their lives to be. They had no special qualifications, and even lost heart and abandoned their Master when the authorities arrested Him. But in the end, all of them, except one, proved their worth in building the Church of Christ on earth.

It is every Christian’s responsibility to make others aware that there is more to life than just living. A true follower of Christ is never content with his own conversion and renewal. He must be able to replicate this new life in other people’s lives. There are three stages in our renewal: the first is conversion to a new life in Christ; the second is commitment to all His Gospel values; and the third is what we call commissioning, which is putting into reciprocal action what we have received in order to participate in God’s salvation plan. Jesus laid out the process for mankind’s redemption when He established His Church on earth, gave us His Word in Scripture, and empowered us with the Holy Spirit. However, by God’s will, Christ fulfilled only half of the Father’s plan; He left us the other half to accomplish in order to feel worthy of claiming our heavenly inheritance. His last words to us before he ascended into heaven were: “”Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold I am with you always, until the end of time.” (Mt.28:19-20)

All of us who feel that we have been called by Christ to this renewal are also being sent to accomplish God’s purpose in our life. As renewed Christians, our ultimate goal is the kingdom of heaven, and our way to that destination is to be one with Jesus, the only Begotten Son of God. To be one with Him is to imitate His life on earth — not necessarily to be crucified — but to practice and proclaim His Good News of love, God’s forgiveness, and salvation. We do not have to possess special skills to become Christ’s apostles. All that is required is simply our ‘yes!’, our willingness to collaborate with God’s plan, to be sent, and the Holy Spirit will do the rest.

As we have received, Lord God, so we must give. Come, Holy Spirit, lead us where we must be sent so that we may bring the Word of God to those who are still searching, and that Jesus’ saving grace may also come to dwell in their hearts. Amen.

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