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

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Then a teacher of the law came to Jesus and said, "Teacher, I will follow you any place you go." Jesus said to him, "The foxes have holes to live in. The birds have nests to live in. But the Son of Man has no place where he can rest his head." Another man, one of Jesus' followers, said to Jesus, "Lord, let me go and bury my father first. {Then I will follow you.}" But Jesus said to him, "Follow me, and let the people that are dead bury their own dead."
— Matthew 8:19-22 NLT
Illustration of Matthew 8:19-22 NLT — "Follow me, and let the people that are dead bury their own dead."

Key Thought

At first glance, Jesus is unusually harsh to these two would-be followers. Jesus, however, is making clear that anything other than our allegiance to him must be secondary to following him. 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 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 the greatest 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


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.

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.