Luke 14:25-35

The bulk of this teaching is pretty easy to understand, but hard to apply. Hating your “father and mother…” means to love them less than Jesus. Jesus starts saying this in response to the fact that “great crowds” are accompanying him – he’s not just a passing tourist attraction but wants to make sure that people are really following him with all their heart, soul, mind and strength. Many people in this country will say that they are Christians but true discipleship isn’t about church and learning about Jesus but is about making him the most important thing ever. A really obvious point that I only realised recently is that Jesus starts talking about the cross before the crucifixion. It’s evidence that he knew the point of his ministry was the cross and, on a simpler level, that he knows the future. Will those who are following walk through jeering crowds to their execution or not? Jesus would.

Before agreeing to do this, those that want to follow Jesus need to make sure they can follow it through all the way. After all, if they start off as salt but then fall away they are good for nothing and will be “thrown away” (v35). The clear challenge for those who are already Christians is to make sure that I know the cost that there will be and am ready to pay it, putting Jesus above all.

Heavenly Father, I thank you for the fact that I am not walking alone, but that I am surrounded by Christians for encouragement and have your Holy Spirit within me to keep me going. Please help me to put you above everything and keep going. Amen.

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