Luke 14 v 27. “And anyone who does not carry his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.”
If you were alive in the days of Jesus and happened to be walking through a town anywhere in the Roman Empire, you would know exactly what was going on if you happened to see a man carrying a large wooden cross on his back.
It would mean that man has lost everything. He has committed some offence against the Empire and had been sentenced to death. He would be on his way to the execution and he would have to carry his own cross, which was the method by which the Romans executed all criminals who were not Romans. It was truly a dreadful business and you would walk by shaking your head. This poor man would be leaving behind everything – his wife, children, friends, hopes, dreams – to pay the price for whatever crime he committed.
Jesus uses this image to make an important point. We have already learned that the heavenly banquet is free because it represents the great hospitality of our awesome God and His Grace to us in Christ. But because it is free, that does not mean it is cheap. On the contrary, Jesus now tells us that salvation is so valuable that if it means suffering the loss of all things, we must face that loss. Nothing can compare with the greatness of what Jesus has done for us on the Cross.
The reason why we so often do not realise the magnitude of His sacrifice on Calvary is because it is hard for us to really grasp how terribly sinful our sins really are, and how devastating the great Judgement of God is really going to be. But be that as it may, here Jesus tells us to embrace salvation at all cost.
Perhaps some of you have already had to endure the cost of following Jesus in some way. Be encouraged. It is worth it all.