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LUKE - Christ, the Savior of the World
A Bible Study Course on the Gospel of Christ according to Luke


2. Jesus and Three Followers of Different Temperaments (Luke 9:57-62)

LUKE 9:57-58
57 As they went on the way, a certain man said to him, “I want to follow you wherever you go, Lord.”58 Jesus said to him, “The foxes have holes, and the birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.”

During his journey to Jerusalem to deliver himself up to crucifixion, Jesus spoke with many people. One of the scribes was impressed with Jesus’ wisdom, and eager to follow him immediately. He found in him the teacher who is gifted with God’s insight. He longed for truth and righteousness. But Jesus showed him that to follow the way of the Son of God was not easy. His companions were not highborn, and he had no earthly distinction or money, but was poor, despised and persecuted. The enemies of the wandering Christ lurked waiting to kill him; therefore he slept out of doors and in the wilderness so that nobody might know where he was. Thus the Creator of the world became poorer than wild animals. Cunning foxes dug holes to protect their young, but the Son of Man had no house. Birds flew freely in the sky, and placed their eggs in warm nests, but the Savior of the world could not find a shelter for his followers, for he himself was homeless and rejected by his nation. He who follows christ will meet with bitter contempt and threats to his life in this world. Do you want to follow Christ any longer? Think carefully before you decide.

LUKE 9:59-60
59 He said to another, “Follow me!” But he said, “Lord, allow me first to go and bury my father.” 60 But Jesus said to him, “Leave the dead to bury their own dead, but you go and announce the Kingdom of God.”

This other man was not so eager to follow Christ as that ardent expert in the Scriptures, but was slow in taking his decision, though his heart was warmed with love for the Nazarene. The Omniscient knew the thoughts of his heart, and wanted to help him to uncover his hesitation. So he ended his hesitation saying to him, “Follow me.” But he who received the call, did not obey the unique word of God. He was concerned and burdened with filial duties. As his beloved father was dead, he began to think of leaving Jesus’ followers to sink into the waves of sorrow at home. Yet Jesus did not desire to leave this new believer sinking in his despair and tears, but wanted to take him into the kingdom of his joy, and establish him in the family of God. This is why the Prince of life spoke of the living as dead, for all men are dead in sins and carry in them the seeds of death. Every living man through his worldly help to others is burying them, for he is preparing their way not to heaven but to the destruction of the tomb. The true Christian is like the unique Life-Giver, for Christ makes him a partner in his power that he might carry those who are dead in trespasses to everlasting life through the word of the gospel. He who believes shall live, and he who does not believe shall die.

Christ asked the man whom he had called to do something strange and impossible for any human being. He asked him to break with custom and deny his duty to his family that he might immediately receive the fullness of God’s life. Christ did not direct this command to all men, but to a certain individual. So you do not have to refuse to bury your dear father when he dies, but you must rather live before your family in Christ’s joy serving with humility, that your father may ask you about the power working in your life, and then become renewed through your prayers and communication of the gospel. Are you a witness of everlasting life, or a dead man burying the living dead?

LUKE 9:61-62
61 Another also said, “I want to follow you, Lord, but first allow me to say good-bye to those who are at my house.” 62 But Jesus said to him, “No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the Kingdom of God.”

A third man wanted to follow Jesus with all his heart, yet this word “but” is a knife that cuts the tie between many who are prepared to believe, and Jesus their Lord. What prevents you from following Jesus completely? Your relations with your family, or your daily needs? Your Lord asks you to separate yourself completely from your kindred, and prepare yourself for poverty, hunger, and self-denial. Following Jesus does not happen except by holy decision and complete determination. You cannot serve two masters.

Christ warns those who begin to follow him not to look back at their corrupt past, that they should not be like the plowman who puts his hand to the plough with determination, but at the same time looks behind, and then balks at his decision. Direct your heart to Christ’s grace, separate yourself entirely from your old spirit, and dare to enter into the kingdom of God that you may become the wise plowman of God, and produce a good harvest.

PRAYER: O holy Lord, I am not worthy to follow you. You know my heart, which is foolish and impetuous while it needs caution and thought, delaying instead of following you immediately, and hesitating when determination is required. Lord, give me a new heart, which loves you above all, and does your will immediately.

QUESTION 74: How did Jesus wisely point these three different followers in the right way?


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