November 4, 2012
We, in our study of Matthew, have seen Jesus heal a leper (direct ask), the servant of a Roman believer (mediator), and Peter’s mother in-law (saw the need). This is how God works even now. We can go to Him ourselves, someone can go on our behalf, and God will see and meet our need. God’s mercy endures even today.
In v18, Jesus calls his disciples aside for a little teaching. Jesus was touching the lives of a lot of individuals. The multitude was still following him but he shifted the focus to feeding his disciples. He decides to leave the multitude to go to the other side so that he could explain to the disciples what is going on. Jesus lets us know that we have to know what we have gone through and what we have experienced to fully understand its impact and what it means. Jesus needed to have a private conversation with his disciples to explain everything they have seen and heard.
v19: As they went, a scribe asked if he could join them. He has written the laws and seen the lives of the Pharisees and now, seeing the life of Jesus he wants to follow Jesus because he has seen the good things Jesus has done. We follow things that look good to us but Jesus wants us not to just see Him but also understand who He is and why He came.
V20: We all want to be followed but instead of Jesus saying come on He gives this scribe a lesson. He lets the scribe know that following Him will not be easy. His decision will cost him. The Christian life can be difficult. It is not always easy. It costs us to follow Jesus.
V21: A disciples then asks to bury his father. The disciple is starting to consider what Jesus is saying and may be looking for an excuse to get out of following Jesus. The price that Jesus laid out was too much for him. Jesus responds by saying that those who are in darkness can take care of those in darkness. But you have experienced the Light and you need to share that Light.
The decisions we make cost not just us but those around us. Who we choose as our elected officials, where we work, how we work, who we marry all have a compound effect on our lives and our world. Our decision to sin cost Jesus His life. But we need to make the decision for Christ. We need to make the choice to follow God. We need to trust in Him to provide for our needs, to take care of us so that we can have peace in our heart knowing that God will provide.
Your decision will always cost. When the rubber meets the road and we are in dire need its Jesus.