What Jesus Did! 'Fasting?' — Matthew 9:14-15

Monday, April 19, 2021

One day the disciples of John the Baptist came to Jesus and asked him, "Why don't your disciples fast like we do and the Pharisees do?"

Jesus replied, "Do wedding guests mourn while celebrating with the groom? Of course not. But someday the groom will be taken away from them, and then they will fast."

— Matthew 9:14-15 NLT

Key Thought

Jesus wanted John's disciples, along with his own disciples, to realize that while he was with them, it was a time of joy. It was not a time of mourning or fasting or weeping. It's simply inappropriate to fast at a wedding feast. No, a wedding feast is a time of celebration. But as bold as this statement is about Jesus' presence altering everything, we also find a hint that his death will alter everything again, and this time in a much more painful way. The point: Jesus' presence affects our view of the time; it changes everything; it determines our joy.

Today's Prayer

Almighty and tender Shepherd, I thank you for loving me so much that you hear my prayers. I believe that Jesus' presence means joy for my life. But I also recognize that I live between his two appearances on earth, and thus the joy is not as great as it was when he was here and far less than it will be when he returns. Give me strength, courage, and joy so that I can face the challenges of this waiting time with faithfulness. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Revelation 19:6-9
  • Matthew 12:42
  • Matthew 26:27-29


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Illustration of Matthew 9:14-15 NLT — "Why don't your disciples fast like we do and the Pharisees do?"

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.