Matthew 10:16-20 NRSVue

16“I am sending you out like sheep into the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves. 17Beware of them, for they will hand you over to councils and flog you in their synagogues, 18and you will be dragged before governors and kings because of me, as a testimony to them and the gentiles. 19When they hand you over, do not worry about how you are to speak or what you are to say, for what you are to say will be given to you at that time, 20for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.

Some thoughts on this scripture

Lord, I have not been dragged before governors or kings, but there have been social occasions when I felt like a sheep among wolves, and metaphorically flogged for my faith. When I am under pressure, do not forget me; see that I am given what I am to say; and help me to be brave enough to say it.

The God of heaven and earth is to be handed over, a term which indicates suffering, mockery, helplessness and injustice. It has a humiliating meaning, as when families betray each other. This will be a regular occurrence for the disciples; even if they flee one place, it may happen in the next. When this occurs, they are following in the footsteps of the Master.