May 4th 2009

I Will Follow You

In the next three studies we are going to look at what seem, at first glance, strange and hard responses of Jesus to some followers in Luke 9:57-62.  The first one, today, is found in verses 57 & 58.

“As they were walking along the road, a man said to him, ‘I will follow you wherever you go.’ Jesus replied, ‘Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.'”
Luke 9:57-58 (NIV)

What could be a more clear statement of intent than this? A young would-be disciple approaches Jesus with what appears to be a very simple and unlimited commitment. This commitment seems to be sincere and if I had been Jesus, I would have accepted him with open arms. But there is the problem–I am not Jesus, and Jesus saw something in this young man that we all need to consider.

Jesus, in effect, responded to this young man by asking, “You say you will follow me anywhere. I do not own a home, nor a place that I can call home. I do not even own my own bed – in fact – the wild animals have more permanence than me. Are you willing to follow me under these conditions?”

I suppose the relevant question here would have been if the young man would have followed Jesus to Jerusalem knowing that our Lord’s death was imminent? Probably not!

Following Jesus is more than being in one geographical location or another. It means to pattern our life on his, to imitate him in every respect, to be like him in every aspect of our lives. This means not only to be willing to go, but to be willing to leave everything behind to go.

Our willingness to be a disciple of Jesus is a commitment to everything he is, as well as to be willing to go wherever he directs us. This young man learnt that his idea of discipleship was very limited in comparison with Jesus’!

Father, give us the strength and commitment to be a disciple of Jesus in all of it’s fullness.

Study by David Silcox

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