Matthew 8:19 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Matthew 8:19, NIV: Then a teacher of the law came to him and said, 'Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go.'

Matthew 8:19, ESV: And a scribe came up and said to him, “Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go.”

Matthew 8:19, KJV: And a certain scribe came, and said unto him, Master, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest.

Matthew 8:19, NASB: Then a scribe came and said to Him, 'Teacher, I will follow You wherever You go.'

Matthew 8:19, NLT: Then one of the teachers of religious law said to him, 'Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go.'

Matthew 8:19, CSB: A scribe approached him and said, "Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go."

What does Matthew 8:19 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Jesus and His disciples are preparing to get into a boat to cross the Sea of Galilee, which is the size of a large lake (Matthew 8:18). As they're leaving, a scribe approaches Jesus and promises to follow Him wherever He goes.

In that era, a "scribe" was an expert in handling written documents, often also a teacher of the law of Moses. These scholars were frequently given local authority to decide how the law should be followed. For better or worse, scribes are often associated with the Pharisees, a frequent target of Jesus' teachings about hypocrisy (Matthew 5:20). It is interesting, then, that a scribe would refer to Jesus as "Teacher" and be so eager to follow Jesus as He traveled in His ministry.

Jesus, in the following verse, does not offer an encouraging response. His remark suggests that this scribe is looking for something other than truth (Matthew 8:20).