Seek first (Luke 9:57-62)


Thanksgiving day was yesterday and I have been thinking about the scriptures I am planning on covering during our Dining with The Master time for about four days. No, I would lie to you if I said that it has taken my priority all the time. Table setting, turkey sizes, flavors, colors, and meal details have kept my mind busy. Last week I went to Florida for my son’s football tournaments and drove there and back. It was great and had a blessed time with parents and football players alike, but it was time-consuming. Thirty two hours travel time! When life gets busy, I wonder if I am fit for the Kingdom. I wonder what Jesus meant by “no one after putting his hand to the plow and looking back, is fit for the Kingdom of God”. Our reading comes from Luke 9:57-62

Well, we are finally completing chapter nine of the book of Luke! yay! The title of our scripture section says Exacting Discipleship. It seems to me that chapter nine of the book of Luke has been mostly about Jesus’s teaching how to be a disciple. He taught the disciples what to do, He empowered them and sent them out to do His work, He taught them how to pray for provisions when He fed the five thousand, He told them to take out their cross daily and what that meant, He showed them how to remain focus on kingdom work by remaining close to the source of power and allowed them to see the transfiguration and being able to hear God the father as He directly spoke to them,  He was disappointed when they could not perform cleaning of the demon possessed boy as He knew they were empowered, He clarified the meaning of greatness in God’s kingdom and now He tells us What it means to be His disciples in verses 57-62.

In my mind, I think, but does He want everyone to be His disciples? Are we all meant to be disciples?. I think that once you have an idea of how much Jesus has done for you and the world, and understand what He and the prophets have said about the end times, You can’t be anything else but join Him in His effort to reach out and spread the Gospel. I think He wants for all to become His disciples. Yes, the first thing is to draw close to him, no matter where we are. He wants all of us, no matter what we have done or where we have come from. He loves us all and when we join Him, there is love in our hearts for all. As we get to know him, we take steps, some big, some small but hopefully in the direction He want us to go which is following him.

Back in chapter nine verses twenty-four, He said that if anyone wishes to save his life, will lose it but whoever looses his life for His sake, will save it.We went through this scripture back in Take up my cross? on this blog. In describing exacting discipleship, Luke tells us of three examples Jesus gave us of what it means to be His disciples. number one: When the first man offered to follow Jesus, He told him that the birds and the foxes have a place where they can rest but He doesn’t. If Jesus doesn’t have a place to sleep or call his own, we should not rely or expect to have one either. It is not priority in this world. When the man said Lord let me bury my father first, Jesus said “allow the dead to bury their own dead” this is a though one. was He meaning spiritually dead or physical death? or was He simply saying don’t worry, Focus on the kingdom, your needs will be taken care of. If the father is dead, He is done. right?. This is also not a priority in this world. Carrying Jesus’s Message is priority.

The third example is like it as well. The man offers to follow Jesus but wants to go back and say good bye to his family first. Jesus said ” No one, after putting his hand to the plow and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God” Was He meaning literally or was he trying to make an impression as to what it means to be His disciples? Once a decision has been made for Christ, he is telling us not to look back. Move forward, we are told we are a new creation.

What does it mean to be fit?. When it comes to fitness of the body google’s description by fit for says that to be physically fit, means to be in a state of health and well-being. Physical fitness is defined as the body’s ability to function efficiently and effectively in work and leisure activities. To be healthy is to resist disease and to react to emergency situations. Being spiritually fit has to be the same don’t you think? we have to have had time with Jesus, walk with Him to see how He is with us and learn to trust Him. We have to  have such conviction, that we no longer care about ourselves but how we fit in His plan.

When He stated no one who looks back after He starts plowing is fit for the Kingdom of God was He meaning worthy of salvation? I don’t get that from this Scripture. Salvation is free for all those who accept Jesus’s gift.This promise is found on John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life”.

He already paid the price and as soon as we accept it and receive Him in our hearts, we are saved. The tricky part is that if that is all we do, we have to ask ourselves did I really believe?. I am really thankful that He is the only one that sees our hearts and will judge on judgement day for He can see what each and every one of us did with our time. After spending time with Him, only us and Him will know how he wants us to serve. My understanding is that the best thing I can do is to follow Him . He will teach me along the way how to be fit for the Kingdom.