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LUKE 14:25-33 MSG

One day when large groups of people were walking along with him, Jesus turned and told them, “Anyone who comes to Me but refuses to let go of father, mother, spouse, children, brothers, sisters—yes, even one’s own self!—can’t be My disciple. Anyone who won’t shoulder his own cross and follow behind Me can’t be my disciple.

“Is there anyone here who, planning to build a new house, doesn’t first sit down and figure the cost so you’ll know if you can complete it? If you only get the foundation laid and then run out of money, you’re going to look pretty foolish. Everyone passing by will poke fun at you: ‘He started something he couldn’t finish.’

“Or can you imagine a king going into battle against another king without first deciding whether it is possible with his ten thousand troops to face the twenty thousand troops of the other? And if he decides he can’t, won’t he send an emissary and work out a truce?

“Simply put, if you’re not willing to take what is dearest to you, whether plans or people, and kiss it good-bye, you can’t be My disciple.”


Well alrighty then! Pretty clear requirements wouldn’t you say? Jesus was pulling no wool over anyone’s eyes. Serving and following Him comes at a cost-A cost most Christians or followers of Christ have not counted. So are you a believer in Jesus? Then is it safe to say you have counted the cost? Years ago I heard this quote. “If you were on trial for being a Christian, would you be found guilty.?”Think about that for a minute.

That’s a question we could ask the persecuted church and get a resounding YES! to, but not so much in the West. We can’t even sit through a service if it goes over thirty minutes. We probably wouldn’t attend services if the air conditioner or heating system didn’t work. God forbid, the Holy Spirit showed up and changed the scheduled programming in “His House” we’d fire the Pastor. How dare he/she go over the heads of the leadership committee! Doesn’t he/she know we have a set program to follow? I’m sharing what is happening in God’s house, with supposedly, God’s people.

Jesus hid nothing from His followers. He told us in His Word that we MUST -not maybe or might- suffer persecution for His Name. 2 Timothy 3:12. In John 15:20 Jesus told the disciples, “If they persecuted Me they WILL persecute you also.” Unless you die first, living as a devoted follower of Christ Jesus is going to cost you something. The apostle Paul had a proper perspective on suffering for the gospel of Jesus Christ. In Romans 8:18 he wrote; “I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.” And let me assure you, he was speaking from personal experience! Read about it in 2 Corinthians 11

The Christian life was not meant to be lived haphazardly or incoherently. It’s not a decision we should make lightly. The non committing will find this life boring and joyless. They’ll always be looking for fillers, something to facilitate what they presume is lacking. Not appreciating or understanding stillness in God’s presence. Needing to always be stimulated through busyness and church activities. Not understanding that this is more of a distraction to spiritual growth than the sheer joy of being accepted in the Beloved. The joy of knowing that I was condemned to die, and Someone stepped up and paid the penalty for me was enough to make me say, “where do I sign?”

Without a proper understanding of the decision you’re making, living the Christian life can be daunting. This is why Jesus not only taught the disciples privately but demonstrated to them publicly, what it meant to follow Him. That’s called in the Christian church “discipling” The apostle Peter wrote these words. “Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation,”

‭‭1 Peter‬ ‭2:2‬ ‭NIV‬‬

A new believer or infant, left alone to figure life out will produce malnourishment and eventually death, spiritually and physically. When Jesus called His disciples, He knew the importance of teaching and preparing them for what their next role would be. Today we are fortunate enough to be learning from what they’ve learned from their time with Him. We are now being discipled through their revelation and are encouraged to grow from milk to meat. Just as a baby has growth stages so do we as Christian followers of Jesus Christ. As we mature, we begin to understand not only what is required, but the cost associated with our decision.

Backsliders and apostates have not counted the cost. Unwilling to deny self to commit to serving Jesus, they quit in the middle before learning how to overcome the world through faith in Jesus. To cover their selfishness and failure, they announce to the world that they no longer believe there’s a God. This walk of faith is not a sprint, it’s a marathon. A lifetime and lifestyle of dedicated service and growth, not to a program or human idealism, but to a Person, not to a religious experience, but to a Person, not to human recognition but to a Person. This isn’t about following a trend, it’s about following Jesus Christ the Savior and Redeemer of our souls.

Counting the cost as Jesus taught, may cost us family relationships, promotions, business deals, personal possessions and sometimes our lives. Jesus didn’t almost die, He paid the ultimate sacrifice with His life, for a crime He never committed. We who appreciate and have received His free gift of salvation must also be willing to forsake ALL to follow Him. Be willing to die, if needs be, for the gospel we claim to believe. In Revelation 3:10 Jesus said these words through the apostle John; “Don’t be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you life as your victor’s crown.” Fair warning. So have you counted the cost? Most of us are familiar with the account of the ‘Rich Young Ruler” in Luke 18, you know what I’m about to say 😊he thought he had life all neatly packaged until...he had to count the cost. His wealth or eternal life through Christ Jesus alone.

We all have something or someone that may prove at some point to be an impediment to our walk with Jesus. The question is: Are you willing to give whatever it is up to follow Him? He gave no outs. He was quite clear in what is required. The I AM says, “His glory will not be shared with anyone “ Isaiah 42:8. When you have given everything, you get to demand everything. He gave everything, so He and He alone decides the requirements to serving Him. I told my daughter very early on in her life If she had to make a decision between me and Jesus, never to choose me. Because given the same choice, I would drop her like hot bread. That’s how committed I want us to be living for Jesus. Nothing and no one, not even me, will stand in the way of my eternal salvation. I’ve counted the cost. It’s nothing personal against anyone, but it is a personal decision, it’s life and death, I choose life, eternal life that is.

So have you counted the cost of serving our Lord? You have read His requirements. Are you on board? Up to the challenge? It will be worth it as Paul says. Nothing compares now, to what lies ahead. Peter had this conversation with Jesus after the encounter with the rich guy. “Peter said to Him, “We have left all we had to follow you!” Luke 18:28. God bless brother Peter, he always says what everyone else is thinking but scared to say.

‭‭‬‬This was Jesus’ response:

“Truly I tell you,” Jesus said to them, “no one who has left home or wife or brothers or sisters or parents or children for the sake of the kingdom of God will fail to receive many times as much in this age, and in the age to come eternal life.” Like 18:29-30 NIV

‭‭ So in my humble opinion, the benefits outweigh the cost. We don’t lose, we’re winners no matter what! Listen, we labor most of us from 18-70 years some of us earlier or longer than that, every day of our lives basically, to posses temporary things. How about laboring for that which yields eternal benefits and rewards? See Ecclesiastes 2:11

So what’s the alternative? I rest my case.

Father in the Name of Jesus, the One who paid the ultimate sacrifice. We humbly admit that we have not truly considered the cost of serving you. We have endeavored to serve you, but not always as you have required. Please help us grow in our knowledge and understand of what it means to wholeheartedly follow You. Help me die to my selfish desires to put on Christ. He alone offers a life worth living. In Jesus Name I pray. Amen

“Do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky” as you hold firmly to the Word of life

‭‭Philippians‬ ‭2:14-16 NIV‬‬


Written by permission of the Holy Spirit

W. Tennant

© Godly Parent Power 2021.  No part of Godly Parent Power & The Morning Messages can be used, adapted, or copied without the permission of the copyright holder.

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