Discipleship: Don’t Hike without Hate

“Large crowds were traveling with Jesus, and turning to them he said: ‘If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters—yes, even his own life—he cannot be my disciple.’ ” (Luke 14:25-26)

Jesus recognized a difference between his disciples — especially the 12 he handpicked — and the rest of the large crowds following Him. It had to do with commitment. Why wouldn’t they follow? Jesus was healing the sick with a touch, casting out demons, performing mind-blowing miracles.

disciples_350Everyone believed He was something special. Some were convinced He was the Messiah. But not all were ready to commit themselves fully to following Him. So Jesus spelled out exactly what it would take.

His first requirement was hatred. Hate sin? Hate Israel’s enemies? Hate the self-righteous religious leaders? Nope. Hate your family. Hate your own life. It was a shocking statement, and we’ll dig into what it means in tomorrow’s devo.

Think: Do you tend to think of yourself as curious about Jesus’ life and power? As a follower of Jesus? As a committed disciple? Did you realize that Jesus had requirements for those who would be His disciples?

Pray: Ask God to help you to know what it means to be a disciple of Jesus and to help you to count the cost of making that commitment.

Do: Read Matthew 10:37-39.