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Mark 6:9

ESV but to wear sandals and not put on two tunics.
NIV Wear sandals but not an extra shirt.
NASB but to wear sandals; and He added, 'Do not wear two tunics.'
CSB but to wear sandals and not put on an extra shirt.
NLT He allowed them to wear sandals but not to take a change of clothes.
KJV But be shod with sandals; and not put on two coats.
NKJV but to wear sandals, and not to put on two tunics.

What does Mark 6:9 mean?

Jesus is sending out the Twelve, charged to carry out their first missions trip without Him. He has given them authority over sickness, demons, and even death (Matthew 10:8), but He has severely restricted what they can take with them. They are not allowed to take food, money, or a bag to carry either (Mark 6:8).

The comment about wearing sandals gives an opportunity for debate. In the parallel passage in Matthew 10:9–10, Jesus says "Acquire…no bag for your journey, or two tunics or sandals or a staff…" Many speculations have been made about this, but the answer is in the wording. Mark says to wear sandals. Matthew says "Acquire…no…two…sandals." As with the tunics, Jesus tells the Twelve to wear a pair of sandals but not purchase or take an extra.

The Greek root word translated "tunic" is chiton and refers to an undergarment worn next to the skin under a cloak. It is what the soldiers threw lots for at the crucifixion (John 19:23). Taking two would ensure sufficient warmth at night, but Jesus intends for them to stay in homes (Mark 6:10).

This style of missions, to travel somewhere to preach and expect to be supported by those we preach to, is not common in today's world. The responsibility of hospitality is not as strong in European-based cultures. In some areas, hosting Christian missionaries is dangerous. And Western missionaries are used to a higher standard of support than, perhaps, a bed of hay in the barn and a single meal of bread. Still, it should give us pause when we think about how intimately Jesus and the disciples came to know those to whom they ministered. Our ability to drive a car away from the mission field at the end of the day and shut the door to our own home makes life easier, but we need to be open to the times Jesus expects a closer and more dependent relationship.
What is the Gospel?
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