Most Christians are familiar with these words spoken by Jesus to His disciples:
“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light”
(Matthew 11:28-30, KJV).
But what, exactly, did He mean when He said, “My yoke is easy”? Is it even true?
After all, elsewhere in the Gospels Jesus calls His disciples to leave everything and follow Him (Luke 14:25-33), to deny themselves and take up the cross (Mark 8:34), assuring them they will suffer as He suffered (Matthew 5:10-12; 10:24-25), and urging everyone to enter through the narrow gate and walk the straight path (Matthew 7:13-14).
How is coming under a yoke like this “easy”?
Let’s deal with the meaning of “easy” first...