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Luke 14:33  (King James Version)
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<< Luke 14:32   Luke 14:34 >>


Luke 14:28-33

In this passage, Jesus explains the principle of "counting the cost." The candidate for baptism must be able to discern the terms of God's offer for salvation before making such a monumental decision. He must be mature enough to understand what God desires of him, to repent and to believe the gospel. A new believer should be baptized as soon as possible after he has come to this point in his calling (Acts 8:35-38; 9:17-18). The apostles' example in Acts 8:12 shows that they baptized only adults who had met the qualifications of baptism. Thus, this would rule out children and—obviously—the dead (I Corinthians 15:29; Paul is ridiculing the practice).

Richard T. Ritenbaugh
Basic Doctrines: Water Baptism



Luke 14:25-33

Our salvation hinges on a lifetime of repentance from dead works and overcoming in faith. Thus, we are counseled before baptism to be sure we have counted the cost before we take on the awesome opportunity of eternal life. Once we take hold of the plow, we cannot turn back.

Martin G. Collins
Basic Doctrines: Repentance



Luke 14:33

Christ calls us to take up our cross and follow His example. This call is not so much a call to martyrdom as a command to deny self or, crucify the flesh, even to the point of death. We must be prepared to die, if that is where the course of events leads, but in most cases it is not so much literal martyrdom as it is to have the attitude of self-denial that is willing to give up all. Christ's disciples live to serve God, not self. Paul admonishes us to put off our former conduct and put to death our sinful actions.

Martin G. Collins
Overcoming (Part 5): Self-Denial



Luke 14:26-33

Jesus draws attention to the disciple's closest relatives, those a person would normally expect would be those most likely to give comfort and aid in a time of need. Yet, in this case, the irritants were differences regarding deeply held religious beliefs and practices. To many of the new converts, the realities of the pains to which the church was exposed came “home” in an uncomfortable way. Their unconverted family members sincerely believed that the Judaism they practiced, delivered to the Jews through the great Moses, was the only true, God-given religion on earth.

Many new converts' unconverted family members did not graciously accept the unexpected changes that had entered their relationship, and they reacted emotionally. The converts soon found themselves living with enemies in their households. As one can imagine, these family persecutions were quite personal. The converts, caught in divided families, may not have been treated violently, but they were considered traitors to what all the other family members believed the Temple, priesthood, and sacrificing stood for.

This reaction happened because the Jewish religion was, in reality, spiritually corrupt and almost thoroughly anti-God. Had not the Jewish religious leadership just proved that by sending God in the flesh to an agonizing death because they failed to recognize God when they saw and heard Him? The anti-God attitude that the Jewish religious leadership tapped into and stirred against Jesus as He was tried before Pilate was more widespread and deeper than it may have seemed on the surface. Animosity toward the converts spread quickly through the communities of Judea.

It was not long before the Jews excluded the converts from any activities that involved the revered Temple. Though most of the converts may not have had to endure violent persecution at the hands of someone like Saul, they did endure emotional persecutions within their own families—it must have felt as if they were living in an alien world. The personal, emotional cost to those in this situation may have been quite high.

John W. Ritenbaugh
Why Hebrews Was Written (Part Four)



Luke 14:33

Not only must we count upon forsaking all, we must also be willing to run the full distance to arrive at the Kingdom of God (Hebrews 12:1). In the two illustrations, Jesus teaches that discipleship must include planning and sacrifice (Romans 12:1-2). In the first, He instructs that, before a person begins to build, he should be sure he is willing and able to pay the full cost of the project. Similarly, Jesus' followers must be sure they are willing to pay the full price of discipleship.

In the second, He explains that we must be willing to sacrifice pleasures, distractions, material possessions, even family, if we are unable to prevail with them—that is, if they would prevent us from serving God. This principle of sacrifice is essential in the realm of discipleship: One must be willing to give up everything for Jesus. Many professing Christians have been unwilling to renounce former, false beliefs. They syncretize God's truth with doctrinal baggage brought from their previous religious fellowships, never quite forsaking the traditions of men (Colossians 2:8; Galatians 1:13-14).

The first parable represents deliberation and adequate preparation, and the second calls for stamina and fighting strength to face a foe with greater strength. In this war against our powerful enemies—Satan, the world, and our human nature—we must be willing to count the cost and to sacrifice. We cannot enter the fray hastily or carelessly, but we must exercise self-control. Paul writes, "Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air. But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection" (I Corinthians 9:26-27). We will overcome them only with the help of the Spirit of our King.

Martin G. Collins
Parables of Counting the Cost



Luke 14:33

Is being a disciple of Christ free to us? These verses say that we have to give up everything! That is not cheap! Moreover, He mentions this in the context of things that are normally the most dear to us of all—our flesh-and-blood relatives! There is no greater price a human being can pay than to give up his family, and yes, his own life! That is not cheap! That is not free!

Grace is the most costly thing that has ever been given. It was costly in terms of the life of the very Creator—the God who made everything! And in return, to receive that grace, He demands that we give up our lives. It is not cheap. It is not free.

Then, how can people say it is free? Christ could not have made the cost of our obligation any clearer than He does here. No relationship ties are stronger than blood ties. The saying, "Blood is thicker than water," originated in the Church of England, meaning that blood ties are stronger than the Holy Spirit, symbolized by the water. The English Church recognized that family ties would pull people away from the truth of God. They are that powerful! Grace is not free, not cheap, by any stretch of the imagination!

Jesus then tells us that, in addition, we have to humbly bear any burden that comes upon us as a result of our discipleship, as a result of having received such forgiveness. Sometimes that cost can be very great. His statement is sweeping in terms of its consequences.

Free does not mean "cheap" but that God freely gave it. He was under no constraint. There was no obligation on His part to do what He did. He owes us absolutely nothing for what we have done. Grace is an aspect of His love that has no motive but itself. "God so loved the world that He gave. . ." (John 3:16).

Looking at history, is there anything lovable about mankind? Look at what humanity has done to this earth! Look at what men have done to one another! In the name of "God," men have blown one another to smithereens! If someone did to our property and to our family as we have treated God's property and family, we would have a terribly difficult time extending love. In fact, we might be totally unable to do it! We lack love of that depth. But God freely gives grace, though He is under no obligation whatsoever.

John W. Ritenbaugh
Titus 2:11-14



Luke 14:25-33

Self-renunciation is an indispensable condition of following Christ, required for accurately counting the true cost of allegiance to Him. This condition of full and selfless service to God demands our hearts and minds, not just our bodies. In Luke 14:25-33, two parables and an exhortation urge us to forsake all that we have as a mandatory condition to becoming Christ's disciples. One main lesson is emphasized in these scriptures: the nature and influence of true discipleship.

Three times (verses 26, 27, 33) the commanding assertion is "cannot be My disciple." One who faithfully follows Christ must be prepared to hate—or more accurately, "love less"—his father, mother, wife, and children, as well as his own life. Loyalty to Jesus Christ and God the Father must be above even the highest loyalties of earthly love, that is, all our love of self must be subordinate to our love for God, who must be first in our life.

Martin G. Collins
Parables of Counting the Cost



Luke 14:25-33

Christ could not have made our obligation any clearer, yet after receiving forgiveness, so many are forgetful and blasé about this responsibility! Family ties are the strongest of bonds, but our loyalty to Christ must supersede them. Beyond that, we must have the humble devotion to bear any burden He deems necessary for our good, the corporate good, or as a witness as part of this way. From our perspective, we can hardly deem God's gift to be free!

John W. Ritenbaugh
Five Teachings of Grace




Other Forerunner Commentary entries containing Luke 14:33:

Song of Solomon 3:1-5
Matthew 24:45-51
Luke 14:25-33
Luke 14:26

 

<< Luke 14:32   Luke 14:34 >>



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