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The Cost of Sacrifice

Prior to taking a walk with his disciples, Jesus rebukes James and John for their worldly mindset in Luke 9:54-56. This verbal admonishment appears to have gotten all of the disciple’s attention. Rather than say something stupid, the disciples listened intently to Jesus’ interactions with three individuals who were eager to become one of Jesus’ disciples. What they all heard was the cost of sacrifice.

And it occurred that as they were going along the road, a man said to Him, Lord, I will follow You wherever You go. 58 And Jesus told him, Foxes have lurking holes and the birds of the air have roosts and nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay His head. 59 And He said to another, [v]Become My disciple, side with My party, and accompany Me! But he replied, Lord, permit me first to go and bury ([w]await the death of) my father. 60 But Jesus said to him, Allow the dead to bury their own dead; but as for you, go and publish abroad [x]throughout all regions the kingdom of God, Luke 9:57-60.

Jesus wasn’t being rude to these young Christians hoping to join His ministry team. Rather, Jesus was like a spiritual drill sergeant trying to expose the flaws and weaknesses of their faith. In the classic film Hoosiers, Gene Hackman tells parents of his basketball team that his players have to be stripped down before he can build them back up the right way. This is what Jesus was doing in today’s passage.

Another also said, I will follow You, Lord, and become Your disciple and side with Your party; but let me first say good-bye to those at my home. 62 Jesus said to him, No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back [to the things behind] is fit for the kingdom of God, Luke 9:61-62.

I’ve spent the last decade of my life in a comfortable place. My move to South Carolina this summer taught me about the cost of sacrifice. While I gave up a great paying job that was an ideal fit for my talents, family is more important than making money. Sure, good paying jobs provide luxuries in life. In the end, you have to solely trust in the Lord to provide, Matthew 6:33. May today’s blog help remind you of the cost of sacrifice.

by Jay Mankus

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