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02-8-11 HighQuest Luke 14:25-33

February 9, 2011

The passage I read was Luke 14:25-33

You can find that passage here:

http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke+14:25-33&version=NIV

My summary of the passage is this:

There is a hard concept being given here.I will attempt to break it down during my reflection.Rather than a summary, I’ll simply share the few verses that stuck out most to me and encourage you to read the passage for yourself (as always).

Luke 14:26 “If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even their own life—such a person cannot be my disciple. 27 And whoever does not carry their cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.

Luke 14:33 In the same way, those of you who do not give up everything you have cannot be my disciples.

As I reflect:

As I pondered and meditated on this passage, I decided to first read it in context.I read Luke 14 to get a better idea of where we are in the story and to whom these things are said.What’s the mood?, etc.That helped a bit.

It doesn’t look to me as though Jesus is saying to “hate” anyone.And that’s good because we are told to hate the sin but love the sinner.Instead, it appears to be a means of communicating that nothing in your life can come between you and God.It seems here that Jesus is advising us not only that our priorities will greatly change to follow Him, but also that in the process we may lose a great deal… To include even the closest of your loved ones should they fail to repent and acknowledge Jesus as Lord of their lives too.Jesus is asking for an ultimate commitment.Though salvation is by faith and not works and that faith in turn produces in us actions and changes by the Holy Spirit as we walk, that’s not to say that one doesn’t need to often make what can seem a difficult choice.And if we chose Jesus over sinfulness with a friend or family member, I’m sure this can very easily come across as hate to them.

America has somehow generally shared the message that coming to Jesus is like going to Disney land.“He’ll make your life fun and you will never be in debt financially or any other way ever again.Everything will all of a sudden become easy.Speak being rich and driving a Lamborghini into existence by the powerful name of Jesus and it’ll be yours.”This simply isn’t true.As a Christian I strongly disagree with anyone that claims that financial stability is a fruit of salvation or that life gets easier once saved.This isn’t Biblical at all.Quite the opposite is usually required of us.We have troubles in life just like anyone else; financial difficulties, marriage struggles, constant battles with sin trying to enter our lives, and in fact many of us lie on a bed of nails (figuratively speaking of course) and find life anything but easy.There are a great number of us that have lost close loved ones because we loved Jesus more than them.Don’t be fooled into thinking that if you come to Jesus everything in life will simply align all of a sudden and you will be loved all the more by your family.Be prepared, for you may lose everything for the sake of your faith.I asked myself a long time ago if I was prepared to do just that.Though I already had little to lose at that point, I counted the cost and stepped forward in faith seeking God not because He’d make my life easier, but because I recognized and was thankful for what He gave up for me… So thankful that I was and still am willing to give Him my life in return every day.I say that and mean that even if I was to lose my family tomorrow for the sake of the call.As Abraham laid Isaac on a sacrificial altar, I must be that devoted and that willing to lose any and everything if the Lord should ever require it in my calling.I cannot be sidetracked by the temporary comfort this world offers.I am not here for that.I am here to help get as many others to see and receive Jesus Christ before their final day here so that we all together may enter into eternity in a Heavenly place in the presence of the Most High.

Jesus goes on and explains that we must bear the cross and come after Him.He says we must forsake all that we have to be His disciple.Don’t misunderstand this please.If you don’t yet know Jesus and have found yourself still reading my notes, know that you do not need to change before coming to God.He accepts you and loves you as you are.But He cannot accept you sin or mine and thus Salvation is required to cover those sins.Ok?So don’t think you have to like get it right before you come to God.We can’t get it right.Ever.That’s why Jesus had to take on our punishment for us.But also, don’t think that once we come to Jesus, our life is going to remain the same.How can it?If you have given your life over to the use of the Holy Spirit and nothing in your life has changed, then I encourage you to consider that you may have never truly converted to a repented life walking with Christ.When the Holy Spirit comes in and pushes all that black muck and evil sinful nature out of our hearts and moves in, we simply cannot remain in the same place and fail to yield fruits as signs of growth in our lives.It just doesn’t work that way.Upon coming to the Lord and choosing to disciple after Him, we must forsake all that we have for the sake of the call.Nothing that hinders our walk can remain.Jesus has in this passage (I think) made it abundantly clear that there is a BIG CHANGE when one disciples after Him.I think He has strongly shown the level of commitment required for following after Him, and I for one will take it with me every day as a reminder of just why we are here and what we were doing.Every action should flow out of this.A conscious thought pattern of a saved person is never for self.For those on the outside looking in, I want you to know that I fail at this daily.The only difference between you and me is that when I fail, I am under God’s grace and He helps me back up to try and try again.I love you and hope you will chose to walk in God’s grace as well.

My response to the Lord:

Father, I… I don’t know how to respond as a result of this study.I do know that I am thankful.I am thankful for your grace and mercy and I by no means mean to say that I can simply rely on them and do nothing in life.I want and strive to serve you.I desire to more strongly follow your Word; to more boldly follow after your Son.I wonder of myself just how committed I am if ever for even a second I can let someone who may be going to hell walk past me without even the slightest attempt to let them know that you love them and desire them to come unto salvation in your Son and walk in the light.I have much room for growth Lord.Help me to commit more daily and grow in strength, integrity, courage, wisdom, discernment, and love that I may more fully serve in your kingdom.Reach out through me Lord.Help me to go where I am too weak to go and speak when I am too scared to speak.Better yet, Lord speak through me and walk here through me and heal here through me.I am yours.

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