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What does "bury my father" mean?

Discussion in 'Doctrinal Discussions' started by New Man 78, Oct 23, 2014.

  1. Today I was reading Matthew 8 and came across verses 21-22, in which a man asks to bury his father before following Jesus. I remember reading in a commentary somewhere that the man was actually speaking about his inheritance that he was due to receive from his father. Has anyone else ever read of this interpretation of the phrase "bury my father" in this verse? That would make more sense than a reference to an actual burial.
  2. http://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=G2290&t=KJV

    thaptō: to bury, inter- Strong's Number G2290
  3. I would say it means what it says. He wanted to go bury his father who had died. There is no "secret" meaning here.
    Jesus wanted this man to follow him, but he wanted to "first" go bury his father. His priorities were not right. We put God "first" in everything and then all these other things will fall into place.

    Mat 8:21 And another of his disciples said unto him, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father.
    Mat 8:22 But Jesus said unto him, Follow me; and let the dead bury their dead.
  4. It's my understanding he wanted to honor his father who was still very much alive but far along in years. He wanted to be by his father's side.
    But Jesus said unto him, Follow me; and let the dead bury their dead. (‭Matthew‬ ‭8‬:‭22‬ KJV) After all, how could a corpse bury someone. Jesus is referring to the spiritual dead.
  5. It never said his father was dead.... just that he was waiting to bury his father..... His father may have had 2 days or 45 years... We don't know.....

    See... It was not uncommon in those cultures to be extra careful to be obedient and careful of your father's wishes and concerns... If his father did not approve of him seeking after Jesus - then the man would be openly disobeying his father in following Jesus.... There may have been a big issue of a huge confrontation over "The Messiah".... where dad didn't believe Jesus was the Messiah and the son did - and as such, dad had forbade his son to go follow...

    We just don't know the backstory - but it was obviously something where the son was quite concerned about following after Jesus while dad was still alive.... and thus - "Burying" his father would negate the problem.....

    What's Jesus answer... "Let the dead bury their own, but come, follow me"..... Obviously, this fellow's father is not on his death bed - waiting a day or 3 to die - where the guy would only be held up a week or two through the funeral and mourning period.....

    Major likes this.
  6. It probably means that he wanted to stay at home until his father died. Jesus was emphasizing that the time of His Father's business was NOW.
  7. My Pastors explained to me in this way.. Probably the disciple who asked this question was first born.. If he followed Jesus, leaving his father just like that, he would have probably lost his inheritance.. He wanted to go back and complete every responsibility as son.. Which would have given him the right to his inheritance.. What Jesus is highlighting here is the cost to follow Jesus.. We cannot have both world and Jesus. That is the point Jesus was making.

    The other common interpretation is, burying a dead father is probably the most important duty of a son.. Following Jesus takes precedence even over that..

    In both the above cases, it does not imply father is already dead.. Probably the father is in his late ages
    gonefishing likes this.
  8. I heard that they did not have one day funerals at that time, Funerals in that culture could take up to 3 days. Also remember Jesus knew everyone's heart and deepest desire, he knew that man's true intentions.
  9. This is also a lesson that Time is of the essence....

    Jesus KNEW his time was short.... He KNEW He had an important appointment to keep on a passover morning.....

    See... If that fellow dawdled around for too long - he would have NO opportunity to follow Jesus in His earthly ministry... and Jesus is hinting at this....

    We often forget that time is of the essence... There are opportunities TODAY that are gone tomorrow.... There are plans that God has put in motion that that he may invite you to have a part in TODAY - and tomorrow, it's gone.... Think of the First generation of Israel in the Exodus... Once they rejected God's call to "Go up today and possess" - the opportunity to do it tomorrow was gone when they changed their minds... The next opportunity happened 40 years later - and only TWO (of about 600,000) got to participate in the "Do over".....


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