I try to refrain from posting anything political on these blogs because I have friends on both sides of the aisle I love dearly, but seriously, Donald Trump was right...Fake News is everywhere...!!!
So, what can we do to discern the truth? Jesus said "Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves. Therefore be wise as serpents and gentle as doves.” Matthew 10:16 The Greek word for "send you out" is apostello [αποστελλω]
The Greek verb apostello [αποστελλω] occurs 132 times in the New Testament. It means to “send away,” “send out,” or “send off.” The noun form is apostolos, which means “one who is sent out” and is the origin of the English word apostle. At least 25 verses in the Bible use apostello to refer to God “sending” Jesus (see Matthew 10:40; Mark 9:37; Luke 9:48; John 3:17). Another 28 verses use apostello to refer to God or Jesus sending someone or something (see Matthew 10:16; Mark 11:1; Luke 9:2; John 17:18).
Matthew 10:16 is not just true for the early disciples, it is true for us today as well. Each day as we go out into the world (are sent out into the world as Apostles, Saints of the Church) as we go through our daily lives, we are operating in the world among wolves. Wolves are aggressive predators who intentionally try to bring harm to their prey and they love to kill and eat sheep. Sheep on the other hand are weak and vulnerable, and without their shepherd, they cannot survive the wolf’s attack. Like sheep, we must carefully obey the instructions of our shepherd Jesus and stay close to Him in prayer if we are to survive the cunning wolf.
He takes two animals whose characteristics are complete opposite, and instructs us to mirror them. The serpent is the very beast that the Devil used to cause Adam and Eve to sin against God in the Garden. The Bible presents the snake as the symbol of evil power and chaos while a dove is the symbol of purity and innocence. Why does Jesus take such polar opposites to prepare us to survive? Both animals represent characteristics that we need as Christians if we are going to overcome the daily predatory aggression of the enemy. If we act like the serpent, we will be used by the Devil to bring harm to others and if we act like the dove, the evil one will eat us for lunch...! If we operate in both, we will manifest a blended personality trait that will be able to fight off the works of the devil. Alone, the wisdom of the serpent is mere cunning, and the harmlessness of the dove little better than weakness: but in combination, the wisdom of the serpent would save them from unnecessary exposure to danger; the harmlessness of the dove, from sinful expedients to escape it. In the apostolic age of Christianity, how harmoniously were these qualities displayed! Instead of the fanatical thirst for martyrdom, to which a later age gave birth, there was a manly combination of unflinching zeal and calm discretion, before which nothing was able to stand.