WHAT'S YOUR EXCUSE?
The following are the words of Christ Jesus.
"Then said he unto him, A certain man made a great supper, and bade many: And sent his servant at supper time to say to them that were bidden, Come; for all things are now ready. AND THEY ALL WITH ONE CONSENT BEGAN TO MAKE EXCUSE. The first said unto him, I HAVE BOUGHT A PIECE OF GROUND, AND I MUST NEEDS TO GO AND SEE IT: I pray thee have me excused. And another said, I HAVE BOUGHT FIVE YOKE OF OXEN, AND I GO TO PROVE THEM: I pray thee have me excused. And another said, I HAVE MARRIED A WIFE, AND THEREFORE I CANNOT COME. So that servant came, and shewed his lord these things. Then the master of the house being angry said to his servant, Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in hither the poor, and the maimed, and the halt, and the blind. And the servant said, Lord, it is done as thou hast commanded, and yet there is room. And the lord said unto the servant, Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled. For I say unto you, That none of those men which were bidden shall taste of my supper. And there went great multitudes with him: and he turned, and said unto them, IF ANY MAN COME TO ME, AND HATE NOT [love less] HIS FATHER, AND MOTHER, AND WIFE, AND CHILDREN, AND BRETHREN, AND SISTERS, YEA, AND HIS OWN LIFE ALSO, HE CANNOT BE MY DISCIPLE. And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple. For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it. Lest haply, after he hath laid the foundation, and is not able to finish it, all that behold it begin to mock him, Saying, This man began to build, and was not able to finish. Or what king, going to make war against another king, sitteth not down first, and consulteth whether he be able with ten thousand to meet him that cometh against him with twenty thousand? Or else, while the other is yet a great way off, he sendeth an ambassage, and desireth conditions of peace. SO LIKEWISE, WHOSOEVER HE BE OF YOU THAT FORSAKETH NOT ALL THAT HE HATH, HE CANNOT BE MY DISCIPLE. Salt is good: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be seasoned? It is neither fit for the land, nor yet for the dunghill; but men cast it out. He that hath ears to hear, let him hear." (Luke 14:16-35 KJV)
This is the Word that the disciple of Jesus Christ stands on. The Word of Christ Jesus is the word of life.
Personal Declaration: I don't just want to be a disciple. I am a disciple of Jesus Christ. When I gave my life to Christ Jesus, I gave him my whole life. I heard His call and I gave (fully committed) to Jesus my all. I counted the cost - that I may finish. There is nothing that I will not lay down for Jesus. This has never been a joking matter for me. I have been tested on some but not everything yet. I do pray to be found faithful through the end. I've made a lot of mistakes. However, I have decided to continue going forward in Christ. I've heard it many times, "CONTINUE." That is what I shall do in Christ. I shall continue.
More words of Jesus...
"But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible. Then answered Peter and said unto him, Behold, we have forsaken all, and followed thee; what shall we have therefore? And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. AND EVERY ONE THAT HATH FORSAKEN HOUSES, OR BRETHREN, OR SISTERS, OR FATHER, OR MOTHER, OR WIFE, OR CHILDREN, OR LANDS, FOR MY NAME'S SAKE shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life. But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first." (Matthew 19:26-30 KJV)
I speculate that if these words weren't in the Bible, the life of a disciple could be much easier. But these words are written, along with the following. More from Jesus...
"And they asked him, saying, Master, but when shall these things be? and what sign will there be when these things shall come to pass? And he said, Take heed that ye be not deceived: for many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and the time draweth near: go ye not therefore after them. But when ye shall hear of wars and commotions, be not terrified: for these things must first come to pass; but the end is not by and by. Then said he unto them, Nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: And great earthquakes shall be in divers places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven. But before all these, THEY SHALL lay their hands on you, and PERSECUTE YOU, delivering you up to the synagogues, and into prisons, being brought before kings and rulers FOR MY NAME'S SAKE. And it shall turn to you for a testimony. Settle it therefore in your hearts, not to meditate before what ye shall answer: For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay nor resist. AND YE SHALL BE BETRAYED BOTH BY PARENTS, AND BRETHREN, AND KINSFOLK, AND FRIENDS; and some of you shall they cause to be put to death. AND YE SHALL BE HATED OF ALL MEN FOR MY NAME'S SAKE. But there shall not an hair of your head perish. In your patience possess ye your souls."
And for those who would try to explain away the word of Jesus for various reasons, we are also given the word of the Apostle Paul to Timothy [The son of a Greek who died around 97 AD ... about 27 years after the destruction of the Jewish temple]...
"This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: FROM SUCH TURN AWAY. For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts, Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith. But they shall proceed no further: for their folly shall be manifest unto all men, as their's also was. But thou hast fully known my doctrine, manner of life, purpose, faith, longsuffering, charity, patience, Persecutions, afflictions, which came unto me at Antioch, at Iconium, at Lystra; what persecutions I endured: but out of them all the Lord delivered me. Yea, and ALL THAT WILL LIVE GODLY IN CHRIST JESUS SHALL SUFFER PERSECUTION. But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. BUT CONTINUE THOU in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; And that from a child thou hast known THE HOLY SCRIPTURES, which ARE ABLE to make thee wise unto salvation THROUGH FAITH which is IN CHRIST JESUS. All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works."
(2 Timothy 3:1-17 KJV)
Why are these words written and published? Are they mere speculation? Are they optional?
Or, are they TRUTH?
1 Corinthians 13, The book of John, and the book of 1 John speak of "love" ... and 2 Thessalonians 2 speaks of "the love of the truth." These are the same love.
GOD is love (1 John 4:8).
JESUS is truth (John 14:6).
"I will praise thee with my whole heart: before the gods will I sing praise unto thee. I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name."
(Psalm 138:1-2 KJV)
GOD has magnified His Word is above all His name. And the name of JESUS is worthy of all worship and praise. This is the word of life that I stand and contend for.
Personal declaration: "I've had enough."
What I am referring to is compromise.
"I've had enough of compromise."
Compromise does not work. Compromise always falls short of the "ALL" commitment of a disciple.
However: Praise be to GOD! For the Word of God works with the Holy Spirit of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
WARNING: Don't be deceived. Many think that their way is the right way because their way looks good or feels good. Being a disciple of Christ doesn't always look good. It doesn't always feel good. Sometimes it may feel like you are the only one standing. But the Word of God is the rock that doesn't move.
Sometimes, all that is left is to stand.
Stand on the solid foundation of the Word of God in Christ Jesus and watch as God delivers you [and those who stand with you] time and again into His arms of true love.
"Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore..."
(Ephesians 6:13-14 KJV)
Personal declaration: I choose to believe, to stand on, and to follow the Word of the Lord Jesus without compromise. I refuse to attempt to put my conditions or anyone else's conditions upon the Word of God. It may look hard to some. It may look harsh to others. It may turn all away from me. But the Word is the Word. Jesus is my Lord and my defender.
God bless you.
HOW FAR ARE YOU WILLING TO GO?
WHAT'S YOUR EXCUSE?
Related: What is "our Gospel?"