Faith Daily | 3 November 2021
PRAYER of the DAY - PENTECOST
God our Father,
whose will it is to bring all things
to order and unity in our Lord Jesus Christ:
may all the peoples of the world,
now divided and torn apart by sin,
be brought together under his sovereign rule of love;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
GOSPEL for the Day: Luke 14: 25-33
25Now large crowds were traveling with him; and he turned and said to them, 26“Whoever comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and even life itself, cannot be my disciple. 27Whoever does not carry the cross and follow me cannot be my disciple. 28For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not first sit down and estimate the cost, to see whether he has enough to complete it? 29Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it will begin to ridicule him, 30saying, ‘This fellow began to build and was not able to finish.’ 31Or what king, going out to wage war against another king, will not sit down first and consider whether he is able with ten thousand to oppose the one who comes against him with twenty thousand? 32If he cannot, then, while the other is still far away, he sends a delegation and asks for the terms of peace. 33So therefore, none of you can become my disciple if you do not give up all your possessions.
GOSPEL Reflection: Contributed by: Cheryl Courtice
There are large crowds travelling here with Jesus, but are they fans or followers? Jesus was on the road to Jerusalem and he knew he was on his way to the cross. However, many of these people thought he was on his way to an empire.
Jesus has warned us that he would be a suffering deliverer, not a popular conquering hero. His rule would come through sacrificial love and costly caring for others, not through hoarding life.
In this passage, Jesus uses a customary teaching method called hyperbole, an intentional exaggeration to make a point, to say that the key to this reading is radical commitment to the kingdom of God.
It’s true that salvation is free; but Jesus told people to first count the cost of serving him, before becoming his disciple. In a sense, discipleship involves a figurative form of death that is similar to crucifixion. Self denial is behind the metaphor of bearing one’s cross. There was nothing sentimental or pleasant about carrying a cross in Jesus’ time. Jesus meant a willingness to obey his commands, serve one another and suffer…perhaps even die…for his sake.
The real question was one of priority and focus. Jesus was willing to give up everything in order to provide eternal life for us.
Because the one who redeems us also calls us into costly discipleship, Jesus’ command to “follow me” is both a gift and demand.
If I want it, I must leave my excuses behind and go get it. Be a follower and not just a fan.
So, help me God. Amen.
FINAL PRAYER: “Take up your cross” TiS 583 Charles William Everest
‘Take up your cross,’ the Saviour said,
‘if you would my disciple be;
take up your cross with willing heart
and humbly follow me.’
Take up your cross; let not its weight
fill your weak spirit with alarm;
his strength shall bear your spirit up
and brace your heart and nerve your arm.
Take up your cross and follow Christ
nor think till death to lay it down;
for only those who bear the cross
may hope to wear the glorious crown.