Thursday, 4 March 2021
“In the same way, those of you who do not give up everything you have cannot be my disciples.” -Luke 14:33 [NIV]
Giving up everything for the sake of following our Lord Jesus Christ and consequent eternity with Him, is the most reasonable thing to do for anyone who has understood the importance of eternal life. The Lord so loved the crown of His creation, man – who was condemned for eternal separation (because we fell into sin and did not stand a chance even to think of salvation)—that He wanted to redeem each of us! He was well aware that He had to bear the punishment for our sins and give up His everything for us- even His very life to make it possible for us to have eternal life with Him. This eternal life is so valuable, beyond any comparison, worth leaving everything we have on earth to possess it- as many of the parables of Jesus on eternal life and Kingdom of heaven indicate. Here in today’s passage Jesus is again making it very clear that the first step in the process of our salvation- that is, the discipleship of Christ itself is a costly affair.
The Parable of the one who wants to build a tower in our reading shows the type of commitment we need to have for discipleship. Like a wise builder who estimates the cost correctly, the journey towards discipleship needs to be wisely thought of; otherwise he becomes a subject of ridicule if he leaves it half way and does not complete his tower. Similarly, we can be carried away by the blessings or the initial happiness of knowing Christ and then later stumble when it comes to the sanctification of ourselves. Sanctification demands the highest commitment in life before the Lord-to be made holy in every sense.
Another aspect to the above referred parable is that of a self-righteous man examining his ability to build the tower and later find it impossible to reach the Lord’s standards just because he did not depend on the Lord to provide him the everyday strength that is required for the committed Christian.
As Bible commentator MacLarren says “Christ sought for no recruits under false pretenses, but rather discouraged light-hearted adhesion to Him. His constant effort was to sift the crowds that gathered round Him. It is the self-sufficient man who is sure to be bankrupt before he has finished his building; but he who has no confidence in himself, and recognizes the fact that he cannot build, will go to Jesus Christ and say, ‘Lord, I am poor and needy. Come Thou Thyself and be my strength.’ Such a forsaking of all that we have in the recognition of our own poverty and powerlessness brings into the field an Ally for our reinforcement that has more than the twenty thousand that are coming against us, and will make us strong.”
The Lord’s demand to give up everything to be His disciple may seem a bit frightening and impossible to practice, initially. But the attitude of self-sacrifice and giving priority to Lord’s will takes us to a destination where we will be blessed with the company of “The Chief among ten thousand” (Song of Solomon 5:10). HE is everything we ever need, who alone made it possible for us to have eternal life through His self-sacrifice for us!
Think on it:
And Jesus said unto him, “No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.”