No turning back – 01-Feb-2015

No Turning Back

Sermon by: Rev. R. Prabhu

Scripture Portion: Luke 9: 57-62

Date: 01-Feb-2015

Introduction

  • Jesus called for a following with not much promises
  • Christ was preparing His disciples for the ministry a head
  • His Disciples were still struggling to understand the depth of God’s calling

No Turning Back sign in the sky

Denial of self is the Demand of Discipleship

  • The first man, a scribe (Matthew 8:19) appeared to have good intentions when he said “ I will follow you wherever you go”
    • He did not know His path: The path of the Cross – this was an unconditional submission
  • For following Christ (criteria explained by Him)
    • Believe that He is “The Christ of God”
    • Be willing to take up the cross and die daily
    • Be willing to lose their life as Jesus’ cousin and their friend John the Baptist did (under the wicked hand of Herod)

self-denial

 

  • It is not a call for an easy life
    • Suffering and rejection were evident in Jesus’ life
  • People used to think that the Messiah will come down to earth on a throne (earthly king’s image)
    • But the actual picture of Messiah: He is a servant who suffers
    • He is the Son of Man, but He has no place of his own
  • No comforts will be promised when me follow Christ – We will be stretched out of our comfort zones
  • You cannot translate the Kingdom of God in terms of the kingdom here
    • James and John wanted to sit on both sides of Jesus – We cannot sit on par with God, because God is God

 

Delayed obedience is disobedience

  • First one was a self initiated following
  • The next call was initiated by Jesus
    • It was a conditional obedience
    • However, the person said that he would want to first go and bury his fatherdelayed_obedience
  1. His father could have been still alive
  2. The burial would take a long time – 30 days of mourning and reburial of the bones after a year
    • He was trying to borrow some time to respond to the calling
  • God has to work deeply within us to change our agendas
    • When we follow Christ, our plans don’t take priority anymore – His plans matter more
  • Jesus did not deny His filial responsibility
    • John 19:26 – John was told to take care of Jesus’ mother
    • However, demand of filial responsibility is not an excuse
    • Luke 9:60 – “There are others to handle that issue”
  • When we follow Christ, we have to put God above all other relationships

 

Distractions are there but stay focused

  • The third also voluntarily responded with a “but”
    • “but first permit me to say good-bye to those at home” – what we fail to realise is that sometimes the first opposition comes from home
  • This man had a divided heart – distractions
  • Jesus was able to read the motives of this man’s heart
  • There are dangers attached to distractions. For example, when plowing, if we are distracted we may
    • Hit a rock or root and damage the plow
    • Plow a crooked row and cause loss of crops
  • Don’t turn back – The world is attractive, but following Christ is important

stay-focused