Did Jesus Command that the Disciples take a Staff or Not?

20141124sparetheroad_0

Matthew 10:10 

Problem: In Matthew, Jesus seems to say that the disciples should not take a staff, but in Mark it appears that He allows them to have one.

Solution: A closer examination reveals that the account in Mark (6:8) declares that the disciples are to take nothing except a staff, which a traveler would normally have, whereas the account in Matthew states they are not to acquire another staff. There is no discrepancy between these texts. Mark’s account is saying they may take the staff that they have, while Matthew is saying they should not take an extra staff or tunic. The text reads, “Provide neither . . .two tunics, nor sandals, nor staffs” (plural: vv. 9-10). It does not say they should not take a staff (singular). So there is no contradiction.

 

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