What Jesus Did! 'The Hard Follow' — Matthew 8:19-22

Thursday, April 8, 2021

Then one of the teachers of religious law said to him, "Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go."

But Jesus replied, "Foxes have dens to live in, and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place even to lay his head."

Another of his disciples said, "Lord, first let me return home and bury my father."

But Jesus told him, "Follow me now. Let the spiritually dead bury their own dead."

— Matthew 8:19-22 NLT

Key Thought

At first glance, Jesus is unusually harsh with these two would-be followers. Jesus, however, is making clear that our allegiance to him must control everything in our lives (Romans 12:1-2). There must not be any rival to the complete lordship of Jesus over every area of our lives. Such a life is demanding, and as events that follow show, even terrifying at times. There is, however, one thing that makes that life with Jesus as Lord powerful and exciting: The Lord is in the lead. He sets the agenda. He provides the strength. He gives the protection. He works with power. While leaving all, risking all, and giving up all sounds quite sacrificial, it is also the doorway to finding an all-sufficient, almighty Savior.

Today's Prayer

Holy Lord, I surrender my heart, my life, my possessions, and my future to you. Lead me in the path that pleases you and gives you full allegiance in my use of time, influence, money, and abilities. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Matthew 7:13-14
  • Luke 9:23-24
  • Luke 14:33


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Illustration of Matthew 8:19-22 NLT — "Follow me now. Let the spiritually dead bury their own dead."

About This Devotional

What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware and is available in book form.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.