“I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore, be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves.
You will be brought to trial before rulers and kings because of me and so you may witness to them and the pagans. But when they arrest you, do not worry about what you are to say or how to say it. When the hour comes, you will be given what you are to say, for it is not you who will speak, but it will be the Spirit of your Father in you.”Matthew 10: 16, 18-20
Peace and good to all.
If my share my thoughts on the above gospel.
The gospel is about Jesus warning and description on what is to happen to the messengers of the word of God.
In verse 16, Jesus uses a figure of speech to describe how should Christ messenger act when send-off in a hostile world to spread the Gospel takes place. Jesus teaches us, his followers, on how to protect ourselves in continuing to spread His word in a world full of hostilities, a world intentionally made hostile by the enemy for those who spread the gospel of our Lord.
Jesus said that in our send-off to spread His word, we are like sheep among the wolves, hungry wolves ready to devour our flesh. These are the wolves who see our gospel-spreading activities as threats to their lives, to their ambitions, to their status quo. And, Jesus reminded us that we are like sheep among these wolves. Meaning, we cannot use violence against them.
Hence, Jesus teaches us to use the positive attribute of a snake which is shrewdness or being smart or clever or discerning, to know the snares set for us by the enemy for us to fall. But Jesus wanted us to be as innocent as the doves too, that is to be Christlike, a gentle one, a harmless one, in a godless and hostile world.
Being wise as a snake and gentle as a dove is what Jesus would want His followers to remember when they are out there spreading the good news of the Lord. He wants His followers to be gentle and not too pushy in feeding the message of God to others. He wants us to be gentle in bringing those far from Him into fellowship with Him. He likewise wants us to be smart in order not to be taken advantage of by the enemy; to be discerning in order not to fall prey on the traps set by the enemy.
And, remember God’s word is meant to be shared, it will accomplish the purpose in accordance with the will of God.