Minden Press-Herald

Sep 21st

No bed, no burial, no goodbyes

Jesus and His disciples were traveling. "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 plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God" Luke 9:57-62.

In considering these three encounters, we see that the first man offered to follow Jesus anywhere. Apparently Jesus, reading the man's heart, realized that he needed some applied reality to clarify his decision. Given the facts, which included no provision for the man's physical comfort, there is no record of his ever becoming a follower.

The second man is invited by Jesus to become a follower. He requested a delay in the timing until a later date – after his father's death and burial. Does Jesus' reply seem insensitive? We know He had a love and regard for all. His point seems to be that we not let anything delay us from responding to Jesus' call.

In the third encounter there is a spoken commitment to follow Jesus after taking care of all the goodbyes back home. Jesus states that the one who accepts discipleship and then looks back is unfit for the kingdom of God. So what is it that Jesus is looking for in a follower? -- A willingness to unselfishly sacrifice any of the creature comforts, a promptness to wholeheartedly respond as soon as He calls on us, and a focus to fulfill His will not allowing any other considerations to interfere. Are you; am I, a follower of Jesus?

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