Luke 14.25 thru 35 The Cost of Discipleship Outline
Christianity…Hard or Easy?
- For some it’s pretty easy being a Christian…
- We need only remember Jesus will be there for us
i. Like in “Footprints in the Sand”
- But there is a cost to Discipleship. (Slide 1) i. Martin Luther said, “A religion that gives nothing, costs nothing, and suffers nothing, is worth nothing.”
- This video is hard, and certainly full of law i. But its true, we must “take up our cross” and “take a stand” “against the flow”
ii. Jesus tell us to take up our cross and follow Him. (Slide 2)
1. What is the cross that we are to take up
a. Not just our husband or Uncle Frank
b. Our cross is to stand for Christ
iii. There is action we must take
1. And if we don’t he may prune us along the way
2. According to this video…Christianity is hard.
- Let’s look at the text
- The people were attracted to the wrong things… i. Miracles
ii. Political hopes
iii. Even food
- For many it is easy being a “Christian”
- It’s kind of a hassle to go to church, but we don’t have a problem with Jesus
- It gets in the way of having fun sometimes but we’ll endure it for now
- Jesus lets the people “following” Him know in no uncertain terms that there is a cost to truly following Him
- For some it might mean leaving family
i. This passage isn’t about hating your family
1. The Greek word for “hate,” miseo, actually means “to love less”
2. This the point, we need to put Jesus Christ ahead of everything
- For some it might mean alienating oneself among others.
- He asks for Total Commitment from us in taking up our cross
- Hen and the Pig- “Help the Poor,” “Bacon and Eggs,” “For you it requires only a contribution, but for me it requires total commitment,” #. Dietrich Bonhoeffer
- Today, Africa, China, and the Middle East
- This is about lifestyle not hassle
i. We are to take up the cross as a way of life
1. A cross is the trouble that comes our way because we are Christians
2. I presented a variation of this sermon to St. Charles Lutheran High the other day and spoke of the evil of peer pressure.
a. Even for adults-One of our greatest problems today is that we so badly want to be accepted. We want people to like us, and often times we will compromise our beliefs and values so that other people will like us better. For the youth we call it “peer pressure” for adults I guess we might call it “keeping up with the Jones’”
ii. The cross is a death sentence for our old self, our sinful self
1. The person that is enamored with the world or wanting to be liked over following Jesus must die
2. A prisoner on death row once said, “The death sentence has a marvelous way of focusing one’s mind.”
a. When our old Adam is dead we can focus on the new self
- Are you ready to bear this cross?
- This means taking a stand around other people
- It is perfectly acceptable in today’s society to call yourself a Christian. Almost the popular thing to do. However, different story when you start living and thinking like one. It is okay to wear a cross around your neck, but when you start carrying one that is a different story. It is okay to believe in Jesus and even acknowledge Jesus publicly the way our athletes often do, but if you start saying he is the only way to Heaven than that is no longer okay. I am telling you that Christianity lived in its purest form will cause you to gain enemies.
- Here in America we don’t have to risk our life, we just feel like bad when we might be looked upon poorly at a party
- So, what’s the payoff?
- Those who lose their lives for the Gospel have those lives returned to them in abundance
- Promise of eternity with God in Heaven. However, that is just the tip of the iceberg, there are countless benefits in this life to discipleship. We have the ability to speak to God through prayer, the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit, a joy that no one can take away, a hope that will never disappoint, a peace that we can never understand, a Father who loves and cares for us
- He wants us!
- He wants us to be His disciples! (Slide 3)
i. He wants us to realize we are called to do these things and give it our all then find out we can’t and call to Him
1. He loves us and calls us to be His disciples but this is so that we can come to the realization that we can’t do it without him.
a. He will pick us up out of the sand and carry us home
ii. Don’t forget he was on His way to Jerusalem to die for us.
1. We can only do this with the help of the very same person that demanded this of us. It is only through Jesus’ crossbearing that we can bear our own cross! Only His death can enable us to lose our life for Christ’s sake.
2. Only through His resurrection will we find our life again-here and hereafter. You see He will come again “with His angels and the Glory of His Father” as promised.
3. We will be with Him. This is the greatness of the gift He has given us. It can transform lives, from a lost life to a found one through the death and resurrection of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ.
a. Remember…ours is a gracious and merciful God. So…know that our stumbles in bearing our cross will also be forgiven.
- In a way Christianity is easy…it’s only cost was Christ! (Slide 4) Amen.