December 19th – Matthew 8:14-22

Spend some time meditating on being set free. Then, come back and read the commentary, my verse, and my response to God.

  • Request God’s help.
  • Read Matthew 8:14-22
  • Record a verse that stands out to you.
  • Respond to God.

Come back and read the commentary when you’re done.

Jesus touched her hand. He didn’t have to touch Peter’s mother-in-law to heal her, but He did. Why? Because Jesus loves fully. Like many of us, he is not afraid of intimacy; intimacy begins with Jesus. On a side note, it’s comical how quickly she rose and served the Lord after being healed. Maybe her name was Martha?

Remarkably, that evening, Jesus freed many people from the chains of demon possession with just a Word and healed ALL who were sick. Undoubtedly, the crowd became quite large before Jesus decided to travel across the sea. However, before departing, He was approached by a scribe who wanted to follow Him. But Jesus, knowing the scribe’s misgivings, told him they would be roughing it. Then another wanted to wait until his Father died, and Jesus said, “Follow Me, and allow the dead to bury their own dead” (Matthew 8:22 NASB). What does this mean? We could glean several truths, but one is this: Jesus calls us all to follow Him by faith, not sight. In doing so, we may need to sacrifice some things on this side of heaven. Comfort, for example, may not be available to those God calls to the mission field. Family may live far away, and funds may be meager for those God calls to serve in the military or the ministry. Yet, He is right there with you, laying His head against the foxhole wall or walking barefoot on the dirt floor of a hut on the other side of the world.

What is one thing you left behind when you answered the call to follow Jesus?

My Verse: Matthew 8:16: “When evening came, they brought to Him many who were demon-possessed; and He cast out the spirits with a word, and healed all who were ill.”

My Response: This verse encourages me even though the common occurrence of demon possession mentioned in the Gospels is astounding. These marginalized, forgotten, tormented people were known and loved by Jesus. Furthermore, I know demon possession exists because I have witnessed it. So why am I encouraged? Because Jesus is no less God today than in the first century. He is still willing and able to set the captives free. That is encouraging indeed!

Father, for all the marginalized and forgotten, I pray for freedom in the name of Jesus. For those who have opened themselves up to demonic activity through the occult or pharmaceuticals, I pray for redemption. You see them, and You love them. Give me eyes to see and a heart to care enough to bring them to You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

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