Summary: Keep your hands on the plow lest you become a traitor to the Lord. Plow a straight row and reap the harvest.
PLOW YOUR FIELD
Luke 9:57-62, "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. 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. And he said unto another, Follow me. But he said, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father. Jesus said unto him, Let the dead bury their dead: but go thou and preach the kingdom of God. And another also said, Lord, I will follow thee; but let me first go bid them farewell, which are at home at my house. And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God."
TRAITOR – even the very word tends to force a bit of anger and disgust to arise in the heart of a patriot. To think that anyone would turn against our own nation where he is given the freedom to earn his livelihood, where his children may be raised in peace and prosperity and safety, and where he is counted as an equal with every other citizen.
We grow angry with those who sold our military secrets to our enemies during the Cold War. Righteous indignation rises within us when we see the abuse of children and spouses, the terribly unjust decisions of our courts and the attempt to cast every vestige of God from the public eye. None of us like traitors, turn coats, or spies.
One of the most famous traitors in American historical records was a man who, at the age 14, ran away from home and fought in the French and Indian War. At the outbreak of the Revolutionary War, he joined the American army as a Colonel and in 1775 shared a command with Ethan Allen in the capture of Ticonderoga. Later he led 1000 men into Canada where he fought in the battle of Quebec. His courage in battle won him a promotion to Brigadier General. But something went wrong. Thoughts of compromise ate away at his patriotic zeal. Soon the unthinkable happened. He offered his services to the British, and in 1780 devised a plan to surrender West Point to British control. Today, instead of being remembered as a national hero, Benedict Arnold is the very definition of a "traitor."
In our message for tonight, I want to point out that there are “traitors” to the cause of Christ as well as traitors to our nation.
Here are some examples of men who desired to be called disciples of Jesus, some of whom even received the call to the ministry, and yet they would not sell out to perform the duty that God had for them. They were easily persuaded to turn back and to sell out their very souls for the things of this life. They spurned their allegiance to Jesus and turned back to serving the devil instead. They were the ultimate “traitors”.
But we can’t point any fingers at these men for how many of us have done the same thing? How many have we seen who started out living for Jesus but who were quickly persuaded or discouraged to the point that they gave in and turned back to their old life.
Here is a scribe that desires to follow Christ, but he seems to have been hasty and rash, and not to have counted the cost. If we mean to follow Christ, we must lay aside the thoughts of great things in the world. Let us not try to join the profession of Christianity, with seeking after worldly advantages.
If you look at this verse on the surface, you may think that this man really wanted to be a disciple of Christ. But Jesus knew his heart, that his desire was not for the right motive. This scribe had seen the miracles that Jesus did, and observed the fame of Jesus among the people, began to think that Jesus would be accepted as the Messiah; and by joining himself to him, promised himself a life of honor, and wealth.
These seem to be the motives, which prevailed upon him to take so sudden and hasty a step; for he did not wait to be called to follow Christ, as the other disciples were, but offered himself to become one.
Have you seen men like this scribe? There are many who look upon the lifestyle of a preacher of the gospel in some churches who think that they want to be a preacher so that they can sleep in, play golf, get the recognition and be able to tell others what to do. They don’t see the late nights, the hospital visitations, counseling sessions, planning meetings, sermon preparations, hours in prayer and bible study, or the opposition and troubles that plague the ministry.