25 Now great multitudes were going along with Him; and He turned and said to them,
26 “If anyone comes to Me, and does not hate [love less, esteem less] his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple.
27 “Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple.
28 “For which one of you, when he wants to build a tower, does not first sit down and calculate the cost, to see if he has enough to complete it?
29 “Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation, and is not able to finish, all who observe it begin to ridicule him,
30 saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.’
31 “Or what king, when he sets out to meet another king in battle, will not first sit down and take counsel whether he is strong enough with ten thousand men to encounter the one coming against him with twenty thousand?
32 “Or else, while the other is still far away, he sends a delegation and asks terms of peace.
33 “So therefore, no one of you can be My disciple who does not give up all his own possessions.
34 “Therefore, salt is good; but if even salt has become tasteless, with what will it be seasoned?
35 “It is useless either for the soil or for the manure pile; it is thrown out. He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”
Why on earth would the Lord require this much from us, putting Him above our family members, and also our possessions. He does this for the simple reason that we are His possession now. We are to forsake the flesh and its desires, and cling to our new life in His Spirit, abiding in Jesus. And if we forsake our flesh and its desires, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, etc., we will find ourselves with more treasures than we could have dreamed of, treasures that won’t waste away or decay, treasures thieves cannot steal, treasures laid up in the corridors of eternity, too wonderful for the mind of man to comprehend.
“Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit.” Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away, James 4:13-14.
As real and as many feelings as we have in our lives here on earth, it is nothing to be compared with what is coming. James is right, we are just a vapor that will disappear one day, as if we had never been here. But thanks be to God and to our Lord Jesus Christ, we have inherited eternal life if we hold fast until the end. The sufferings we endure in our journey here on earth cannot compare with the joys we will share in heaven with our God who is love. God is love. This is one of the most beautiful statements ever spoken. Our God is love! Our God is love!
May He lead and guide and help each one of us to give up everything for Him. May we always be aware that we are a people for His own possession, that we might do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with Him, all the while displaying His excellencies through our deeds of love for one another, for the poor, and for our enemies as well.
For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are the sons of God, Romans 8:14.
Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant
Please weigh everything I say on the scales of God’s holy word.
Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org