Luke 9:56-62

Luke 9:56 (KJB)
For the Son of man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them. And they went to another village.

(Luke 19:10 KJV) For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.  The Lord Jesus did not come to destroy the lives of people but to save them. The time for judgment will be on the last day but right now today is the day of salvation. (2 Cor 6:2 KJV) (For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.) The Kingdom of Christ would be ruled by love and compassion and not by the sword and fire as James and John suggested. Then the last part of this verse states that the went to another village. Jesus did not punish them nor did He even chide them for not letting them pass through, instead He avoided any confrontation and went to another village. This is also a principle for evangelism, when we are rejected in one place, then instead of making a problem, we just quietly go to another place and evangelize there.

Luke 9:57 (KJB)
And it came to pass, that, as they went in the way, a certain man said unto him, Lord, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest.

(Mat 8:19 KJV) And a certain scribe came, and said unto him, Master, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest. Apparently this scribe had wanted to follow Jesus and made the declaration that he was willing to follow Jesus wherever He went. The words “I will follow” are in the future tense. We do not know if this scribe was sincere because maybe he saw the miracles that Christ did and possibly thought that if he follows Jesus, there may be an opportunity for wealth and notoriety. He may have also have gotten caught up in the moment when Christ was healing and people were praising God for their healing. This is another lesson for us that we must make sure that we are not caught up in the moment of elation at evangelistic events but to make sure we know that if we do get involved, it will cost something. Many get excited at Bible conferences and special meetings at their church but never look beyond to assess what the actual commitment will cost.

Luke 9:58 (KJB)
And Jesus said unto him, Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head.

The scribes declaration of the following of Jesus prompted a quick and realistic answer from Jesus. Following him would not be a bed of roses and it would not be a life of ease. The scribe needed to assess the cost of the commitment in following Jesus. It cost as much as a person’s life. Jesus basically tells him that the foxes have their dens and the birds have their nests for rest and repose but the “Son of Man” has nothing like this. Jesus never had a permanent residence while He was here on earth but stayed in people’s homes or outside all night. This was the reality of following Him, it was not going to be five star hotels and everyone welcoming them and loving them. This is the usage of the term “Son of Man” is pointing out the fact that Jesus will suffer and die as a human and His followers can expect the same treatment. (John 15:20 KJV) Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also. The scribe was probably used to easy living and the life of a follower of Jesus was not for him unless he was truly saved and qualified to be a follower.

Luke 9:59 (KJB)
And he said unto another, Follow me. But he said, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father.

This individual disciple wanted to follow Jesus. This is not one of the twelve but could be any of those who accompanied Jesus on His journeys. However, this disciple wanted to follow Jesus but on his own terms. He wanted to wait until every condition in his home was perfect. The problem here is that this man wanted to follow but he wanted to do it in his timing. His father was still alive and maybe he was old and the man wanted to continue to take care of him until he had died and then he would be freed up to follow. That is not how God calls disciples. (Mat 10:37 KJV) He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. Matthew 10:37 gives the overriding principle of discipleship. There can be no dividing of allegiance. If one is going to follow Jesus, it must be done in His timing and on His terms. This is not to say that Jesus does not care about families but a disciple’s first love must be the Lord. When Jesus was on the cross, He committed His mother into the care of John and that is what we must do also. If we are to follow Jesus, then we are to commit those we are caring for into the hands of others. This verse is definitely not advocating divorce. If there is one who is called that is married, then the both of them would go to whatever field the Lord has chosen for them. There is no such thing as divorce to the glory of God.

Luke 9:60 (KJB)
Jesus said unto him, Let the dead bury their dead: but go thou and preach the kingdom of God.

(Mat 8:22 KJV) But Jesus said unto him, Follow me; and let the dead bury their dead.  Here Jesus counsels that disciple to follow Him. The words “Follow me” are in the Imperative Mood in the Greek making them a command. The last part of that verse is also a command. Jesus is telling this disciple that let those who are spiritually dead, bury the physically dead. The spiritually dead do not have a divine calling on them. Those whom the Lord Jesus makes alive through salvation have a divine calling on them and are to be ready to go wherever the Lord commands them. The second part of that verse can also give us a principle. Once we are in the kingdom, then we should remove ourselves from the cares of this world. What I mean by that is the goals we had before salvation such as wealth building or career building should be abandoned in light of the present calling of the Lord Jesus Christ. Let the world go on with its business and we are to busy about the Lord’s business. (2 Tim 2:4 KJV) No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.

Luke 9:61 (KJB)
And another also said, Lord, I will follow thee; but let me first go bid them farewell, which are at home at my house.

Once again the would be disciple was making excuses that he wants to follow the Lord but wants to delay that obedience when it is convenient for him. The major principle is delayed obedience is disobedience. This man seemed to have as much concern for his relatives back at his house as he did for Jesus. He was trying to serve two masters and that cannot happen. It also seemed that this man wanted to live the new life of Christianity but also wanted to cling on to aspects of the old life. He probably wanted to settle the affairs at the house or to divide up his estate but whatever the reasons this man had for delaying, they were wrong.

Luke 9:62 (KJB)
And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.

If this man did get involved with the ministry, he probably would have been easily diverted when other things came up and would keep going in and out of ministry. Jesus lays down a major principle that when a person begins to till the land and starts plowing, if he does not continually look straight ahead, and keeps looking back, then the furrows would be crooked and the crops would not be able to grow properly. There are many people in this world whose hearts live in the past and are always looking at past accomplishments. I once attended a church where their glory was their past and all they ever did was revel in the past. Jesus is looking for those who will continually look forward as they stay the course for the Kingdom of God. He wants those who will progress in the Christian life and faithfully fulfill the ministries the Lord would give them. (1 Cor 4:2 KJV) Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful.

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