Speaker: Jerry Cisar
What does it mean to have faith? What does it mean to be a disciple, a follower of Jesus? Questions like this are what our series DISCIPLE 1.0 seeks to answer. What, according to Matthew’s Gospel, does it mean to be a disciple? This week’s text gets right to the heart of answering that question. And the answer may surprise you.
On first blush, in this story, Jesus seems unbelievably demanding, even telling one fellow he couldn’t go back and bury his father if he wants to be a disciple. I want to suggest to you that the problem is not with Jesus but with our understanding of 1) Who Jesus is (His authority), and 2) what faith is. Faith and authority are intricately linked!
The centurion in last week’s text (8:5-13) set us up well for what we encounter this week. That was a story about great faith; this week’s is about little, or weak faith. There is a play on words in my title: Jesus is unbelievably demanding if we are unbelieving! (Or, those of tiny faith!)
Would be disciples must understand the relationship between “faith in Jesus” and “obedience” in order to follow Jesus faithfully. This relationship hangs on His authority. Once we understand the authority of Jesus, then suddenly his commands don’t seem, “unbelievably demanding.”
Join us as we explore the authority of Jesus as the foundation of our faith and obedience.