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3 Pentecost - Jeremiah 20:7-13; Matthew 10:24-39

Tony Campolo preached an infamous sermon you might not want your kids to hear.

Luckily for you, the ancient dream has finally come true—in this brave new world, God's

people finally have the power to mute the preacher.

Get ready, because here's what Campolo said:

"I have three things I'd like to say today.

First, while you were sleeping last night, 30,000 kids died of starvation or diseases related to malnutrition.

Second, most of you don't give a shit.

What's worse is that you're more upset with the fact that I said shit than the fact that

30,000 kids died last night.”

What is most important?

What are we afraid of; what are we most offended and threatened by?

What matters more: the lives of others or my own personal sensibilities, expectations,

worldview, and comfort zone?

Avoiding these questions is one of countless seductions of white privilege, which looks to be

fading away, finally, at long last, thanks be to God.

These essential questions have been front and center on capital steps and city streets and

social media across our country for weeks now, with no escape havens of entertainment

or sports to shield us from their intrusion, no sand remaining in which to bury our heads.

Maybe now we're finally ready to hear Matthew chapter ten.

Jesus doesn't mince words.

He exposes our favorite things—security, safety, money, stuff, privacy, reputation,

conflict avoidance, and yes, even family—as idols.

He is preparing his apostles to go out into the world to cast out demons and preach the ultimate

priority of God with no gold, no bag, no guarantees...see, I am sending you out

like sheep into the midst of wolves.

He tells them to expect trouble, especially from the authorities; that's what the cross is, after all.

It is the inevitable, predictable result of telling the truth, which Gloria Steinem famously

noted will set you free, but first it will piss you off.

If you don't believe her, go spend ten minutes on social media.

You will quickly find a morass of defensiveness, a sprawling wasteland of liberals and

conservatives alike launching partial truths like grenades while avoiding, discrediting,

attacking, denying and rejecting any and all truth from the other side because they can't

bear the possibility that any exists and the terrifying implications that come from that.

There are many sharp points that will puncture your own preferences if you have the courage to let them.

Have no fear of them, Jesus says.

Have no fear of the truth, because the truth knows the number of hairs on your head and

the death count of sparrows and the truth is Someone who loves you.

And the truth will set you free, but don't expect to enjoy the journey getting there.

Jesus is introducing his new apostles, and those of us who are the latest heirs to their daunting

assignment, to the old truth of Jeremiah.

When he was only a boy, God saddled Jeremiah with a call too heavy for adult shoulders:

See, today I appoint you over nations and over kingdoms, to pluck up and to pull down, to

destroy and to overthro