But Jesus told him, “Let the spiritually dead bury their own dead! Your duty is to go and preach about the Kingdom of God.”
~ Luke 9:60
I remember the first time hearing this scripture, and thinking; wow! Jesus seemed as if He was being extremely harsh. After all, shouldn’t one be allowed to bury their loved one? But then, something happened in my life that made me understand this scripture.
It was a difficult time for a woman, and her children. They asked for my help, and this was a time to show them the love, peace, strength, and forgiveness that Christ had to offer. It was a task given to me. At the same time, a date had been set to bury the ashes of my mother. She had already passed away a few months prior. I was all set to go, but then this issue arose where the Lord quietly asked me to follow Him.
I had a decision to make. I could go bury my mother, who was already with the Lord, or I could be there for the living. That’s when I truly understood Jesus’ statement. Jesus had asked a man to follow Him. The response by this man was, “Let me go bury my father.” Jesus answered by saying, “Let the spiritually dead bury their own dead! Your duty is to go and preach about the Kingdom of God.”
We do not know if this man’s father was already dead, or if he was old, sick, or quite possibly fine. More than likely, he just wanted to remain behind and live with his father until his death, which could take many years. This man was just using a reason not to follow Christ. We all find it easy to make excuses to go our own way.
My decision this time was actually easy. I knew what my mother, who had a heart for the Lord, would want me to do. I knew what Christ wanted. Mom was no longer here, but I had some work to do for ones who were alive, and even work to bring someone who was dying spiritually, to know Christ.
Jesus words were not harsh at all. He was concerned for people to be saved for an eternity. He wanted sinners to come to repentance, and forgiveness. He wanted people to come to Him, and have victory over death, by tapping into His vine of life-giving blood of purification, and sanctification. He wanted to give life, and life abundantly to all people.
Jesus was not being cruel. He was loving the lost, as He always does. Our job is to help Him, by preaching the Kingdom of God. It is such an honor to be given a task by the King of Kings, and Lord of Lords. Who would want to miss this opportunity? When He asks us, “Will you follow me,” we should not hesitate. We should immediately say, “Yes!”
Lord Jesus, Help me to follow you with whatever task you put before me. Amen
~ Jenny Calvert