Summary: Jesus confronts three men with the high cost of following Him.

READ: Luke 9:57-62.

Luke records for us in this passage an account of THREE (3) MEN whom Jesus met as He travelled along with His disciples. Two of these men declared that they wished to follow Jesus; to become His disciples. The other was one whom Jesus SUMMONED to follow Him.

What immediately strikes me is the way in which Jesus handles these inquirers (and I think that this is Luke’s reason for recording the details of these meetings). MOST men with a cause are busy trying to recruit as MANY as they can. Most preachers are busy trying to get as many members for their church as they possibly can (and most have good intentions). I like seeing new members myself!

It’s natural. It’s what we expect to see. But Jesus is radically different in His approach. He seems to spend a great deal of His time trying to DISSUADE men from following after Him - or at least that’s what it looks like.

A minister friend of mine was sharing with me recently some advice he was given by an aging preacher whom he greatly respected. The old man said to him, “Son, always endeavour to keep your church as SMALL as you can!” That’s strange talk isn’t it?! And that was coming from a man who himself had pastored quite a large congregation. But what he meant was, preach the truth of God’s salvation, and the demands of following Jesus, SO CLEARLY that ONLY those who have counted the cost and are ready to give up ALL for Christ will join themselves to you.

Friends, it’s my desire to see as many as possible come to Christ - I pray to see them come in their hundreds and even thousands - BUT I DON‘T JUST WANT TO GET A CROWD . . . that doesn’t interest me at all! I want to see men and women, young people, boys and girls turning to Christ with whole hearts; becoming TRUE sold out disciples of the Master. Hallelujah!

And so, it’s interesting to read of Jesus’ way of dealing with those who expressed a desire to follow Him; He seems to be trying to DISCOURAGE them. BUT NOT REALLY. In actual fact Jesus’ desire is that people WILL follow Him - but He wants them to think it through first . . . to count the cost involved . . . so that once they DO follow Him they’ll never turn back. Even as He spells out what is required in such clear, shocking terms, inside He is longing for them to accept it - He’s rooting for them - but the cost is the cost . . . it’s non-negotiable . . . and they MUST be prepared for it.

Would you look with me tonight at these three men who Jesus confronted with His demands, and consider with me “THE COST OF FOLLOWING JESUS”.

We read of the first man in VERSES 57-58. And from Jesus’ conversation with him we learn that:


[READ vv57-58]

It’s quite a bold statement this one makes, isn’t it?! “I will follow you WHEREVER you go!” Can you say that without any idea of where this Jesus may be headed . . . what may be involved in the journey?! Perhaps you need some more information first, and then if you’re still willing to follow all well and good.

Jesus replies that to follow Him “WHEREVER He’s going” will not be an easy road. He’s not one of these “high-flying” Rabbis who jets from village to village, staying in the best hotels, and collecting nice offerings from the crowds that come to hear them. No sir. His is a true “FAITH” ministry!

When Jesus stepped out of His throne in glory to come to the earth and live and die for us, He left behind all that He had. He exchanged wealth for poverty - out of the ivory palaces into a rude cattle shed. He exchanged rulership for servanthood.

He says, “Foxes have holes, and birds have nests, but the Son of man has nowhere to lay His head”. What an irony . . . the King of glory - heir apparent to the throne of the Universe - doesn’t even have a place to call “home”. He has no earthly security. He was loaned accommodation by those who loved Him. He borrowed a coin to tell a story. He borrowed a donkey to ride into Jerusalem and fulfill prophecy. Why, He was even buried in a borrowed tomb! (It was just as well that He didn’t need it for too long!) HE had NOTHING. Oh, but here I see His glory shining! He gave up all when He came and stood by me!!!

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Gregory Hogan

commented on Sep 6, 2006

Thanks for that quote from John Stott.

Madhusudhan Babu

commented on Feb 20, 2014

Pray for me and for my work to win and save the souls in the land of India

Greg Nance

commented on Mar 1, 2008

Phil, Great lesson with a powerful punch about the meaning of following Jesus. I thought you did a very good job with the exposition and application of the text. Jesus wants our whole hearted devotion! Amen.

Madhusudhan Babu

commented on Feb 20, 2014

Amen and I agree with you . U from brother

Sam Sutherland

commented on Jul 25, 2008

We have to look at the cost of following our Savior - great message....

David Garver

commented on Aug 16, 2008

As a recently retired pastor, I had to hear again the call to discipleship, and the continuing cost to follow Jesus, all of your life. Thanks for the challenge.

Madhusudhan Babu

commented on Feb 20, 2014

Hello dear brother David Graver, this is Deyon, evangelist from India, may God bless u and gives u strength, jesus is coming very soon and so we need to stir up the spirit of God in the people of God to stand for God amen. This is my email and my website . God saved me 5 times from my death and using me for His glory

Raymond Hull

commented on Mar 14, 2009

Very thought provoking. When I first acknowlwedged my calling to preach the Gospel my pastor sounded like Jesus in that he warned me of cost of acccepting that called. He said that the road was long , full of twist and turns, slippery at times and mostly uphill. He also said that many give up and turn back because of how tough it can be. I concur after six years that he was right and actually down played it. With God as my witness I wont turn back. When I look back I see emptyness, despair and sure death.

John Fults

commented on Jul 23, 2013

good sermon. I was so blessed to be reminded about the cost. I see some points to remind my congregation. Thanks!!

Jonathan Crews

commented on Aug 2, 2013

Thank you for this well-thought out message. My mentor and I are considering returning to China on His mission, and I am deciding whether or not to enter a Fall 2013 Biblical Ministry graduate program this week. The words of Jesus are incomparable, as are His riches. All followers of Christ need to be reminded of the cost.

Ruben Esparza

commented on Sep 25, 2013

We need to always be reminded of the cost of following Jesus, because our human nature has a tendency to dig in and find a foxhole or a nest to settle into. We were created for a purpose other than having contentment, joy and peace in this world and that is to step out into the trenches of spiritual warfare, wherever that might be.

Gordon A Ward Jr

commented on Mar 8, 2014

om at a loss about "burying his father". could anyone expalin this part? the scripture states that "i need to go home and bury my father". yet you state that He may already have been buried because of a days end.? please help so i may expound this to my people. thank you


commented on Jul 18, 2014

The cost of following jesus, Foxes have holes(house) to stay, Birds have Nest(house) to stay but son of man cannot make any place in this world to stay forever because this world doest belong to us, as peter said we are aliens and strangers in this world. When Jesus called a fellow to follow him, he said i want to bury my father first , bible didnt say that the father was dead, but he was waiting to get the property and shares which he will get after his father is dead, Many of us has ignored the calling of JESUS because of our personal reason, God wants us to be with him forever............ God Bless u all

Clement Manenga

commented on Aug 18, 2014

Great revelation, I have never looked at this scripture from this angle.

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