Unity in Christ Jesus
Matthew 8:18-34: Would-be followers of Jesus approach him. Jesus retreats from the crowd with his disciples and crosses the lake in a boat. He falls asleep, but when a storm erupts, the disciples become frightened. Jesus calms the wind and waves; and when they arrive on the other side of the lake, two men possessed by demons meet Jesus.
The Would-Be Followers of Jesus
18 When Jesus noticed the crowd around him, he ordered his disciples to go to the other side of the lake. 19 A teacher of the Law came to him. “Teacher,” he said, “I am ready to go with you wherever you go.”
20 Jesus answered him, “Foxes have holes, and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lie down and rest.”
21 Another man, who was a disciple, said, “Sir, first let me go back and bury my father.”
22 “Follow me,” Jesus answered, “and let the dead bury their own dead.”
Jesus Calms a Storm
23 Jesus got into a boat, and his disciples went with him. 24 Suddenly a fierce storm hit the lake, and the boat was in danger of sinking. But Jesus was asleep. 25 The disciples went to him and woke him up. “Save us, Lord!” they said. “We are about to die!”
26 “Why are you so frightened?” Jesus answered. “What little faith you have!” Then he got up and ordered the winds and the waves to stop, and there was a great calm.
27 Everyone was amazed. “What kind of man is this?” they said. “Even the winds and the waves obey him!”
Jesus Heals Two Men with Demons
28 When Jesus came to the territory of Gadara on the other side of the lake, he was met by two men who came out of the burial caves there. These men had demons in them and were so fierce that no one dared travel on that road. 29 At once they screamed, “What do you want with us, you Son of God? Have you come to punish us before the right time?”
30 Not far away there was a large herd of pigs feeding. 31 So the demons begged Jesus, “If you are going to drive us out, send us into that herd of pigs.”
32 “Go,” Jesus told them; so they left and went off into the pigs. The whole herd rushed down the side of the cliff into the lake and was drowned.
33 The men who had been taking care of the pigs ran away and went into the town, where they told the whole story and what had happened to the men with the demons. 34 So everyone from the town went out to meet Jesus; and when they saw him, they begged him to leave their territory.
Today’s Key Verse: Matthew 8:27
Everyone was amazed. “What kind of man is this?” they said. “Even the winds and the waves obey him!”
Why were the disciples afraid? What in your life makes you afraid? What do you do when you are overcome by fear? When Jesus healed the two men in Gadara, why did the people beg Jesus to leave their territory?
Lord Jesus, I seek to follow you and become your disciple. Teach me your ways so that I grow in knowledge of you. You are my shelter and I rest safely in your love. Amen.
Matthew 9:1-17: Jesus heals a paralyzed man and calls Matthew to be a disciple.