Yesterday I preached from Luke 14:25-33. The title of my sermon was “It’s Not An Easy Choice.” Jesus is teaching a large group of people about the cost of being his disciple. He’s tells them some things about being a disciple that were not easy to hear. His words challenged his listeners then and his words continue to challenge us now. He invites his listeners to consider the costs of being a disciple. It’s as if he is inviting them to see if they can bear the cost of following him, the cost of learning from him. In verse 33 he is very clear about the bottom line. He says,
“So therefore, any one of you who does not renounce all that he has cannot be my disciple.”
Disciples of Jesus must be willing to renounce everything for the sake of their devotion to him. He demands complete loyalty. No exceptions.
The costs of following Jesus are high. The journey of discipleship can be hard at times, sometimes even seeming to be impossibly hard. But being a disciple of Jesus is not just a hard choice, but it is also the right choice. For anyone considering following Jesus it has always been the right choice. It is always the right choice. And it will always be the right choice.
It was the right choice for Peter, his first disciple. It was the right choice for Stephen, the first martyr. And it was the right choice for absolutely everyone person who stepped out in faith to follow him since the days he called his first disciples.
Discipleship is an outgrowth of faith. They go hand-in-hand. A person wouldn't become a disciple of Jesus if they didn't first have faith in him, and it doesn't make sense to me that someone would claim to have faith in Jesus and yet not want to follow and learn from him, which is the essence of discipleship.
The reason I believe that discipleship is always the right choice is that when stripped of everything else it is basically a choice between life and death. Not life and death in an earthly sense, but life and death in an eternal sense.
In Romans 10:9 Paul teaches that Jesus promises eternal life to all who would call on him in faith, saying,
“Because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”
It is my prayer that readers of this blog who are not Christians would look into their hearts and consider if God is speaking to them through my words. Feel free to contact me if want any help with understanding what God may be speaking to you.
And for those of you who do have faith I give thanks to God and I invite you to prayerfully consider to whom you may share the Gospel with, so that they may walk with Christ Jesus as their Lord and Savior.
Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.