top of page

The Cost of Discipleship

Updated: Jul 11

I have often heard individuals say that at one point they accepted Jesus as their Savior and then made him Lord of their life at a later time. It's important for you to understand that if Jesus is not your Lord, then he was never your Savior. The following parable is most often found under the heading, The Cost of Discipleship.

When we read the Bible, we often see that wherever Jesus is, that crowds are attracted to him. Also, Jesus tells us things that we very often do not want to hear. As we begin to look at these verses from Luke chapter 14, you might notice that Jesus seems to be a whole lot more serious about who he is and what he requires of us then we tend to be.

Now great crowds accompanied him, and he turned and said to them, “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple. Luke 14:25-27

Hate is a very strong word and one that is not usually associated with somebody who calls himself a Christian. This is what Matthew Henry says about the command to hate those we love.

Every good man loves his relations; and yet, if he be a disciple of Christ, he must comparatively hate them, must love them less than Christ, as Leah is said to be hated when Rachel was better loved. Not that their persons must be in any degree hated, but our comfort and satisfaction in them must be lost and swallowed up in our love to Christ. If we must either deny Christ or be banished from our families and relations (as many of the primitive Christians were), we must rather lose their society than his favour.

Today, that choice is still being made in the Middle East, China, and many places around the world. We also have an example in the Old testament of a lover of God putting this in practice. In Genesis 22:1-19, we witness Abraham actively preparing to sacrifice his son's life because God required that. This was the promised son that God said that "all nations will blessed through him." (Galatians 3:8)

When Christ calls a man, he bids him come and die, Deitrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship

To help you and I understand the weight of what Jesus just said, he gives us the following parable.

For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it? Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.’ Luke 14:28-30

There is a building in Garden Grove, California that was known as the "Rusty Skeleton" for over ten years. The owners had started the construction on the multi-unit apartment building motivated by the income it would generate for them. However, they ran out of money. For 10 years, this is what everyone saw. They had failed to count the cost, the full cost. But not everyone is a builder. But everyone is a member of a community. And the leaders of communities and countries always change.

Or what king, going out to encounter another king is war, will not sit down first and deliberate whether he is able with ten thousand to meet him who comes against him with twenty thousand? And if not, while the other is yet a great way off, he sends a delegation and asks for terms of peace. So therefore, añy one of you who does not renounce all that he has cannot be my disciple. Luke 14:31-33 ESV

The United States of America is failing in an epic way. I look around and realize two things. First, it doesn't matter what party is in control or who is in the White House. This country has moved beyond the point of no return. Second, I have watched as the churches and many Christians are becoming modern day Pharisees. We are becoming more concerned about who is leading and what laws are being enforced, just like the Pharisees during the first century. We forget that as followers of Jesus our citizenship is in heaven (Phil 3:20). We are are not of this world (John 17:16) and are actually ambassadors of Jesus Christ (2 Cor 5:20).

Working together with him then, we appeal to you not to receive the grace of God in vain. for he says, " In a favorable time I listened to you, and in a day of salvation I have helped you." Behold now is the favorable time; behold now is the day of salvation. 2 Cor 6:1-2 ESV

Today you have a decision to make. Are you willing to follow Jesus as your Lord and Savior no matter the cost? Or are your current situation and circumstances more important than your eternity, and the eternity of those around you? We would love hear from you if you have any comments or feedback.

13 views0 comments


bottom of page