Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. 38 And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39 Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. (Matt 10: 37-29)
Jesus said if you love your mum or dad more than him, you are not worthy of him! That’s a strong statement, and who can say that? Only the Savior of the world, the Son of God himself and also who loved you enough to die for you, is qualified to say that. Seriously your parents didn’t die for you, for the eternal salvation of your soul. Therefore he is worthy is having such allegiance from us, because He is talking about eternity. Recently I heard about the struggles of folks holding onto something he or she loves in life, to such an extent that, he/she lost the life that Jesus promised. That’s exactly what Jesus says here in v39—whoever finds his life will lose it. Some cases of real life examples: Some have pursued financial prosperity so much that he gives up on his walk with the Lord. Some have been so influenced by the world’s liberal views that, it’s questioning even his own faith in the salvation of Christ. Some have been so swept away by girlfriend or boyfriend that, it overshadows the relationship with God, and plunged forward to what’s ‘gained’ in this life. Now if you want something or somebody so strongly that is against God’s will, you just gained your life in your worldly desire, so to speak, but you just lost the real life, the eternal life in Christ! (v39). In other words, those who go all out to get what they really want in life, but against your own deep conscience as a Christian and hence God’s will, will lose it altogether. That’s like you build your identity on something or someone you love so much that, it’s becomes yours eventually but you will go down. The only way out of this, is to continually look to the Lord for his deliverance, for his captivation of your heart of his love, beauty and what he can do for you instead. Only the Holy Spirit can convict you to come back. Think of the all the patriarchs and folks that held on to Christ in their persecuted life, some were extremely persecuted to death even, and especially in the early church era during emperor Nero in Roman empire for instance. Christians suffered persecution in China, Iran etc now in this 21st century, and they persevered to the end. But we are nowhere near that now. The point is the Lord is faithful and will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear.
13 No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it. (1 Cor 10)
Then it talks about this: 26 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul?
This is a realistic and practical question but deadly serious that we will really need to answer from the bottom of our hearts. Just exactly what’s important to us really? People who rush into foolish decisions in life may wreck their eternity forever. This is the darkest thing one ever will encounter in your entire life! How would anyone trade that heritage in Christ? For what? This is certainly not a decision to be taken lightly.
But those who lose what they love much in life for the sake of Christ, will gain the real life like a zillion times better. This is big. What a victory in sight. What a joy set before him. That’s how Jesus endured all the pain and shame & sufferings on the cross. (Heb 12) And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
Lastly consider these verses: Heb 12: 16 See that no one is sexually immoral, or is godless like Esau, who for a single meal sold his inheritance rights as the oldest son. 17 Afterward, as you know, when he wanted to inherit this blessing, he was rejected. Even though he sought the blessing with tears, he could not change what he had done.