Counting costs: the cross

how much - question in letterpress typeCarry His Own Cross.  27 Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple. The expression carry his own cross is a metaphor of discipleship. In terms of dedication, one is to live as already condemned to death, “oblivious to the pursuit of noble status, find no interest in securing one’s future via future obligations from others or by stockpiling possessions, free to identify with Jesus in his dishonorable suffering” [Green, 566]. Continue reading

Counting costs: choosing

how much - question in letterpress typeJesus’ command of love makes it unthinkable that he commands hating one’s family all the while commanding to love those we do not know and are even our enemy. As Culpepper [292] notes, one should understand the Semitic hyperbole always uses stark differences so that the contrast is more clearly seen. The term misein (hate) denotes attitudes and modes of action rather than emotions. The point is not how one feels towards one’s parents, but rather one’s effective attitude when it comes to the kingdom.” This becomes clearer in 16:13, “No servant can serve two masters, he will either hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.”  This continues Luke 12:49-52 regarding division with the household caused by the proclamation of the reign of God. Continue reading

Counting costs: conditions

how much - question in letterpress typeMany scholars tag Luke 14:25-33 as “The cost of discipleship.”  They are unique and peculiar to Luke, focusing on the total dedication necessary for the disciples of Jesus. It must be remembered that Jesus on the way to Jerusalem and has already predicted his death; so too should the disciples be prepared to leave all behind and make their commitment to the journey that will unfold before them. Continue reading

Counting costs: context

how much - question in letterpress type25Great crowds were traveling with him, and he turned and addressed them, 26 “If any one comes to me without hating his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, 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 Which of you wishing to construct a tower does not first sit down and calculate the cost to see if there is enough for its completion? 29 Otherwise, after laying the foundation and finding himself unable to finish the work the onlookers should laugh at him 30 and say, ‘This one began to build but did not have the resources to finish.’ 31 Or what king marching into battle would not first sit down and decide whether with ten thousand troops he can successfully oppose another king advancing upon him with twenty thousand troops? 32 But if not, while he is still far away, he will send a delegation to ask for peace terms. 33 In the same way, everyone of you who does not renounce all his possessions cannot be my disciple. Continue reading