Teenside Daily Devotional

5/18/20
Read Matthew 11:1-19.

Here, disciples of John the Baptist are sent to Jesus, by John, to confirm that he is indeed the Messiah. However, we know from Matthew 3, as well as the accounts of the other gospels, that John truly believed that Jesus was the Lamb of God. This raises a big question! Was John the Baptist, the man responsible for clearing the way for the Messiah, now doubting who Jesus was?

Let’s assume that John is doubting Jesus’ claim that he is the Christ. Why would he be doubting at all? Well, for one thing, John is in prison. He might have expected Jesus to release him by this point in time since he felt crucial to the work of the kingdom of God. He could also have been hoping, like many others (including Peter), that Jesus would reveal his identity and claim his place as King over this earth, putting an end to Roman tyranny. When neither of these things happened, seeds of doubt could have formed in John’s mind about who Jesus really was. So, in response, he sent a few disciples.

While John’s doubt could have been the reason, another likely reason for this encounter is the disciples’ doubt. Think of all the times that people in the Bible (Old and New Testaments) are given specific tasks to teach them something. Why would we expect anything different here? John the Baptist could have sent disciples he knew to be doubting Jesus’ identity to Jesus so that they could verify for themselves who he was (the apostle Thomas comes to mind).
The remainder of this passage is Jesus praising the works of John the Baptist, verifying and encouraging John’s ministry just as John has been supporting Jesus’ ministry. However, in the last two verses, 18 and 19, we see that no matter what John or Jesus do (even if their actions oppose each other, like with “eating and drinking”), they are rejected by the culture around them. This is similar to what Jesus passed on to his apostles before sending them out, but this appears to be more Jesus defending John against those that are choosing to denounce the Word of God (based on the next passage).

Questions:
*Take a moment to journal these questions. Write down your thoughts, questions, and concerns. Then date your entry. One of the coolest things is being able to look back and see how God came through for you.*

  1. How do you care for the needs of your brothers and sisters in Christ? (Don’t just think financial). 

  1. What do you think Jesus means when he says the “prophet’s reward” versus the “righteous person’s reward”? What do you think is the difference?

  1. How do you care for people with little? How could you care for people with little?

Prayer: Spend some time praying about the things you journaled. Ask Jesus to show you how to care for others like you would care for Him. Thank Him for the ultimate gift of His grace. There is nothing you could do to earn it but nevertheless Jesus gives it freely. Ask Him how you can give freely to others the way He given to you.

Song: We Are- Kari Jobe

Spotify Playlist: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/169Fs68hROYRdS362T8D9w
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