Summary: Jesus tells the disciples He will have to suffer and Peter rebukes HIm. Jesus tells them that unless they deny themselves & take their cross, they'll be rejected. The power of God only flows into a crucified life. Have you surrendered all yet?
THE COST OF DISCIPLESHIP
1. A teacher with obvious liberal tendencies told her class of small children that she was an atheist. She asked her class, “How many of you want to be atheists too?” Not knowing what atheism is, but wanting to be like their teacher, their hands shot into the air like fleshy fireworks.
2. There was, however, one exception. A little girl named Lucy had not gone along with the crowd. The teacher asked her why she had decided to be different.
3. "Because, I’m not an atheist." “Then,” said the teacher, "What are you?" "I’m a Christian." The teacher was a little perturbed now, her face slightly red. She asked Lucy why she was a Christian.
4. "Well, I was brought up knowing and loving Jesus. My mom is a Christian, and my dad is a Christian, so I am a Christian." The teacher was now angry. "That’s no reason," she says loudly.
5. "What if your mom was an idiot and your dad was an idiot. What would you be then?" Lucy paused, smiled and said, "Then, I’d be an atheist!"
1. 31 He then began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and after three days rise again. 32 He spoke plainly about this, and Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. 33 But when Jesus turned and looked at his disciples, he rebuked Peter. “Get behind me, Satan!” he said. “You do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns.” 34 Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 35 For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it. 36 What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? 37 Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul? 38 If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his Father’s glory with the holy angels.” Mk. 8:31-38
TITLE: “THE COST OF DISCIPLESHIP.”
I. JESUS MAKES TWO CORRECTIONS
A. 1ST – THE FAULTY MESSIAH IDEA (vs. 31)
1. Just before this (vss. 27-30), Peter had made his great confession that Jesus is the Christ, the Messiah the Jews had been waiting 1,000s of years for.
2. Jesus thought this was the right time to tell them, that His Messiahship, would not fit the standard Jewish conception – He was going to suffer and be killed!
3. This was a shocker. The Jews believed their Messiah would conquer all the world’s powers and set up an earthly kingdom (which He will later). They just didn’t know He had to redeem the world by substitutionary atonement first.
B. PETER’S WRONG THINKING (vss. 32-33)
1. Verse 32 says that Peter “took” Him. The Greek word is proslambano and means “took hold of Him” as if to hinder Him. He began to rebuke the Lord for saying He would suffer.
2. The Jew’s teaching was that God would protect the truly righteous person from suffering. We have that thinking today. Christians who suffer often think God has let them down.
3. The Apostles came to understand the exact opposite: suffering is expected if you’re a true Christian. “All who live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution” 2 Tim. 3:12; and we’re “counted worthy to suffer shame for his name” Acts 5:41; “For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe in him, but also to suffer for him” Phip. 1:29; “if we suffer, we shall also reign with him” 2 Tim. 2:12. (see also 1 Pet. 3:14; 4:19).
4. Peter loved Jesus and didn’t want Him to suffer, but he didn’t understand God’s plan. The Cross of Christ was a stumbling block to the Jews and foolishness to everyone else, but it was the power of God and the wisdom of God! It was God’s way of saving the world!
5. Jesus, in verse 34A, felt that willingness to suffer for the kingdom by His followers, was so important that He called all His disciples and the crowd together to exhort them to make the ultimate commitment.
II. COST OF BEING A DISCIPLE OF JESUS
A. REQUIRES SELF DENIAL (vs. 34B)
JESUS DISCOURAGED PEOPLE FROM FOLLOWING HIM
1. Often people declared that they wished to follow Jesus; to become His disciples. What strikes me as unusual is the way in which Jesus handles these inquirers. MOST pastors would be trying to recruit as MANY as followers as possible, but Jesus takes a radically different approach: He usually tried to DISSUADE men from following after Him - or at least that’s what it looks like.