Being a disciple involves loving Jesus more than you love anything else in your life.

 Luke 14:25-34

25 Large crowds were traveling with Jesus and turning to them he said: 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.

28 “Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Won’t you first sit down and estimate the cost to see if you have enough money to complete it? 29 For if you lay the foundation and are not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule you, 30 saying, ‘This person began to build and wasn’t able to finish.’

31 “Or suppose a king is about to go to war against another king. Won’t he first sit down and consider whether he is able with ten thousand men to oppose the one coming against him with twenty thousand? 32 If he is not able, he will send a delegation while the other is still a long way off and will ask for terms of peace. 33 In the same way, those of you who do not give up everything you have cannot be my disciples.

34 “Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again?

Cross,Jesus,God,Holy Spirit,Daily Devotion, Disciples

The gospel is for outcasts. Jesus said himself that he didn’t come for the healthy, he came for the sick. We are all sinners, made sick from our sin. Jesus came for us and for everyone who believes in him.

We are all invited to God’s banquet, but there are very strict conditions. Jesus invites us to give up everything, pick up our crosses and follow him. Discipleship means a person’s readiness to place his or her claims above those of both family and self. Disciples must be prepared to deny themselves completely. People should count the cost involved in saying ‘No’ to self before starting on a course which they may not be able to follow until the end.

This is reflected in both the parables given by Jesus. A builder who starts on a project but doesn’t finish it because he ran out of money faster than he anticipated looks pretty foolish. An army commander who doesn’t consider the strength of his own army before engaging in battle with a larger, stronger foe also looks pretty foolish. A disciple who gives up midstream when the going is too tough is like salt which has lost its taste and is unfit for seasoning food. But the biggest condemnation Jesus gives of this is in verse 34 when he says that the salt is neither fit for the soil or the manure, it is thrown out. What he is effectively saying is that you would ruin manure. That’s how seriously he takes Christians who fail to give their whole lives for him. Not even fit for the manure pile.

Being a real, committed disciple of Jesus involves putting both hands to the plow and never looking back. It doesn’t involve ‘hate’ of the ones you love (verse 26). Rather it involves ‘loving them less’ and loving Jesus more. It’s part of the process of being a living sacrifice and putting Jesus first in everything you do. Becoming a disciple of Jesus is about taking up your cross and following him.

Head: How does Jesus describe the cost of discipleship? How do you feel about that cost?

Heart: What does being a disciple of Jesus look like to you? Are there areas in your life that you need to ‘love less’ so you can love Jesus more? Are these areas holding you back?

Hands: How can you put that into action? What areas of your life need to change in order to be more like a follower of Jesus?

Prayer: Father God, thank you for sending your Son Jesus to give up everything for us. He put everything on the line for us for our sins. Because of his sacrifice, our sin has been erased and we are free to join him in God’s kingdom. However, our response to this has often been nowhere near good enough. We have been reluctant to follow your every word, holding on to the bits and pieces of our lives that we like instead of surrendering them all to you. Please forgive us for this and help remind us that to follow Jesus requires a whole of life transformation and to put him first in all things. Amen.

A song to listen to: Who You Say I Am

Mick Lather- Living Church Creek Road