Matthew 10:9-10. Provide neither gold As if he said, Though I forbid you to take money for the miraculous cures which you shall perform, I do not mean that you should beforehand lay up money for your support during your journey. You are not even to provide the clothes and shoes which you may have occasion for before you return; because you shall be supplied with whatever you need by those to whom you preach the gospel. Our Lord forbade his disciples to provide beforehand such things as might be necessary during their journey, because they would be an encumbrance and would incommode them in travelling. He probably also ordered them to go out thus unfurnished, partly that they might be inured, in his own lifetime, to bear the hardships they would be exposed to afterward, when discharging the apostolical office; and partly that their faith in the providence of God might be confirmed. For it must have afforded them great comfort ever after, to reflect on the singular care that was taken of them while out on their first mission, wholly unprepared to execute such an undertaking. Accordingly this was the use which Christ himself directed them to make of it, Luke 22:35. It may not be improper to observe here, that the word ζωναις , here rendered purses, properly means girdles: because the people in the East had a custom of carrying their money in a kind of fob-pocket, or fold, made in the duplicate of their girdles. The word τηρα , rendered scrip, was a sort of large bag, in which shepherds and those who journeyed carried their provisions. Thus the bag into which David put the smooth stones wherewith he smote Goliah, is called both a scrip and a shepherd’s bag. Our Lord, in saying, Neither two coats nor shoes, means that they were only to take one coat and one pair of shoes, that is, only the articles of raiment which they were wearing. “In the account which Mark gives of the repetition of these instructions, immediately before the disciples took their journey, he says, they were permitted to be shod with sandals; ( αλλ ’ υποδεδεμενους σανδαλια , Matthew 6:9.) The sandal was a piece of strong leather or wood fastened to the sole of the foot with strings, which they tied round the foot and ankle; but the shoe was a kind of short boot, that covered the foot and part of the leg, and was a more delicate piece of dress than the sandal.” Macknight. Nor yet staves Though in the margin we read, Gr. a staff, which is the common reading, many manuscripts and versions have ραβδους , staves, which some think reconciles this place with Luke 9:3; and removes the seeming contradiction from Mark 6:8, where we read, Take nothing save a staff only; that is, as they explain it, he that had a staff might take it to walk with: but none of them were to take any sort of rod or staff besides, wherewith to defend themselves, because, being the servants of the Lord, they were to be defended by his power as well as supported by his bounty. But the more probable solution of the difficulty seems to be, any one of them that had a staff in his hand, might take it: but as for those who were walking without staves, they were not to provide them.
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