Your thoughts on these two characters in Mt 8?...

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by kyredneck, Apr 1, 2014.

  1. kyredneck

    kyredneck
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    ...or the replies of Christ to them:

    19 And there came a scribe, and said unto him, Teacher, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest.
    20 And Jesus saith unto him, The foxes have holes, and the birds of the heaven have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head.

    An odd reply to someone that's willing to follow Him anywhere? Comments?

    21 And another of the disciples said unto him, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father.
    22 But Jesus saith unto him, Follow me; and leave the dead to bury their own dead.

    Another odd reply to someone wishing to honor his parents? Comments?
     
  2. thisnumbersdisconnected

    thisnumbersdisconnected
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    In the first analysis, it many seem Jesus is being pretty hard on these to alleged followers. But Jesus sees their hearts, and knows they are not completely sold out to Him. He makes clear, in His responses, that anything other than our complete loyalty and faithfulness to Him must be our primary concern. All else is secondary.

    We cannot put anything in our lives as having higher importance than holiness, which is no more nor less than love. The two Great Commandments, "Love God, love others," equates to holiness. The only way to achieve this level of love is to allow Jesus lordship over our lives. Living that kind of life is difficult, it is onerous, it is burdensome, but it is not impossible. That is because He must be the lead, He must take us where He wants us to go. We cannot use a spiritual compass, plot a course and ask Jesus to bless it, because He won't.

    The agenda is His. He provides the strength. He gives the protection. He works with power. Our true sacrifice is to abandon our lives to Him. Leaving everything we have, both materially, familially, morally, at great risk to ourselves and who we believe we are, is the true sacrifice. It could be described as the doorway to finding an all-sufficient, almighty Savior.

    Quite simply, Jesus could see in the hearts of these two men, simply by the questions they asked, that there were not ready to totally sacrifice themselves for Him, as He was about to do for them.
     
  3. kyredneck

    kyredneck
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    Agree. From His replies to each of them, care to surmise what He perceived to be their motives?

    To me, the first is pretty straight forward, the second one a little more complex.
     
  4. thisnumbersdisconnected

    thisnumbersdisconnected
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    He's a scribe. Scribes were well-to-do and comfortable. Jesus wanted to know that those thing were not only unimportant, but also not readily available, if he chose to follow Him.
    True, and I can only glean this from having studies these passages in the past. It appears the excuse hid an ulterior motives, perhaps that he was concerned with the reading of the will and what he was going to get, or at least that he had other responsibilities, perhaps to an aged or ill parent, and his statement was effectively, "I can follow you when he dies." But as someone once pointed out to me, there is somewhat of a companion verse in Genesis, in which Jacob is assured that his long-lost son Joseph "will close your eyes," as in "bury you." But it was seventeen years later before Joseph did so. If the man is asking permission to take care of family first, given that the Lord had said that He must come before everything else, including father, mother and brother, then he is not as committed as Christ wants us to be.
     
  5. Van

    Van
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    Lets not be too quick to judge Christ's motives as seeking to rebuke the insincere. Perhaps they did not grasp the level of commitment, i.e. going all in, and Jesus was teaching? Following Christ means losing the safety and security seemingly provided by the world, i.e. a den or nest, or place to lay our head.

    Again with the second teaching, Jesus is saying he cannot be one of our priorities, but must be our only priority. So Jesus might be teaching that the level of commitment to Him must exceed the person's commitment to parents, family, etc.
     
  6. thisnumbersdisconnected

    thisnumbersdisconnected
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    Balderdash. They had the witness of Christ Himself, and it wasn't a "motive" of Christ to judge, it was His prerogative and right to do so, and He did.
     
  7. exscentric

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    Just an aside, the second passage: When God led me to go to Bible school He led me to one 1200 miles away. My father was 1 1/2 yr into a 3 years to live declaration by the doctor. I was a young Christian, not wanting to leave him knowing I probably would not see him again. I prayed for a few days on the topic - knowing I was going in my mind, just second thinking it all I guess.

    I had been praying about it off and on all day, got home opened the Bible to you know what passage :) It gave me a real peace. Off we went a few weeks later to school.

    Of Course God knows best, it did not work out at the school, could not find work, could not rent an apartment without work and no money. Returned home, the Lord led us to a school 300 miles away, saw my father many times - he lived about 6 year more :)

    Willingness to follow seemed to be the key He wanted me to know.

    To the OP: Always thought the Lord was laying down the requirement so they would rather plainly know the cost up front. Second verse, simply that if you are going to follow, do it, do not hesitate. You could maybe go further, that He was the living and those that follow Him are the same, let those that are dead deal with the dead - living/following is more important than an EXCUSE.
     
    #7 exscentric, Apr 1, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 1, 2014
  8. Van

    Van
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    Jesus could read the thoughts and motives of those He was dealing with, but for us to claim the same capacity is ... balderdash. To claim we know for sure Jesus could not have been motivated by compassion, is, using one of Greektim's favorite words overly "dogmatic."
     
  9. kyredneck

    kyredneck
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    Thank you for sharing this and giving your personal experience/insight. Lord willing I'll be back to this later.

    Did you just let the bible 'fall open' to this passage? You know, like casting lots?
     
  10. exscentric

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    Yes, that was before I knew that didn't work. :) I know it is not the best way of finding God's will but He honored my ignorance. I wasn't really doing it as a finding His will - just opened to see if there would be guidance.
     
  11. kyredneck

    kyredneck
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    'Reading between the lines', yea, I agree, this guy being a lawyer of his day was at least expecting to someday be well-to-do and comfortable, and seeing how popular this Jesus was becoming and the great crowds following after Him was hoping to 'ride the coattails' of this up and coming rabbi to fame and fortune himself. JMO of course.

    Jesus set him straight on what to expect by becoming one of His disciples, He didn't even have a place to lay His head. Seems He let him down gently though, I don't perceive a rebuke in His reply to the scribe.

    Do you perceive a rebuke?

    You make some good points.

    Do you perceive a rebuke?
     
  12. thisnumbersdisconnected

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    It's a combination rebuke and eye-opening statement, I think. I believe Jesus is wounded somewhat by the fact they do not love Him enough to turn at this point of their lives completely toward Him. However, I also perceive He wants them to know the door is still open -- it always is anyway, until the last breath of this mortal coil is drawn. Nonetheless, He wants them to see they have time enough left in their lives to decide they will follow Him and still be effective stewards of the gifts He gives them.

    I think of my dad, a stubborn man, self-sufficient, morally upright by not a Christian. He didn't see the need, and in fact would put many life-long Christians to shame with his track record. But when he was facing his mortality from lung cancer, he finally listened to my presentation of the gospel, and became a true follower of the Christ. The last five months of his life, if you stood still, he was going to preach Jesus to you. It's never too late.
     

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