What's In Our Name II (Luke 14:25-35)Ken Miller, June 30, 2013
Part of the Sermon series, preached at a Sunday Morning service
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Our church name, Pilgrim Christian Church, was chosen with thoughtful intent years ago when the group of believers
started meeting together regularly. There was fervent singing, testimonies of God's working, and humble confessions.
The word “Christian” has varied meanings today. In the time of the early church, it referred to a disciple of Christ. Jesus
gave directives for His followers, and He had some hard teachings for those who desired to follow Him. In Luke 14:25-35,
we find His words: “If a man comes to Me, and doesn't hate … he cannot be My disciple.” This supreme loyalty to Jesus
supercedes all other relationships. It includes my “own life also.” Putting Jesus's interests ahead of my own is hard, but it
is the way of the Christian.
To be a Christian in the early church meant being willing to suffer for Christ. We shy away from things that make us
uncomfortable, but our personal comfort is not to be considered when we follow Christ in suffering. Do not seek the
easy life. We must be willing to embrace suffering for His sake, or we cannot be His disciple.
Jesus calls us to surrender all we are and all we have in order to be His followers. It takes honest assessment of our
resources and assets. A good exercise is to make a list of all I have, tangible or intangible. Take each item on the list and
consciously surrender it to Christ. To hold back on anything is to take my own way. Surrender means all or none. Total
surrender is the only option in order to be a Christian. 2
The call to follow Christ is for all; the way is hard, but Jesus enables us by His grace to follow Him. Forsake all. Embrace
suffering. Surrender all to Him. And life and peace and rest you will find! That is what it means to be a Christian.
25 Now great crowds accompanied him, and he turned and said to them, 26 “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. 27 Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple. 28 For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it? 29 Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, 30 saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.’ 31 Or what king, going out to encounter another king in war, will not sit down first and deliberate whether he is able with ten thousand to meet him who comes against him with twenty thousand? 32 And if not, while the other is yet a great way off, he sends a delegation and asks for terms of peace. 33 So therefore, any one of you who does not renounce all that he has cannot be my disciple.
34 “Salt is good, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? 35 It is of no use either for the soil or for the manure pile. It is thrown away. He who has ears to hear, let him hear.” (ESV)