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The Parable of The Unprepared Builder Made Simple

(Luke 14:28-30)

This is returning back to a theme covered in an earlier parable. But it is good to be reminded about this regularly.

I read this parable in the context beginning from Luke 14:26.

26 “If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple. 27 And whoever does not bear his cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple. 

The word hate here doesn’t necessarily mean the bad way. To be Christ’s disciple, we are told to hate our father, mother, wife, children, brothers and sisters, even our own life. “Hate” here means to love less. It then goes to say that anyone who doesn’t love their father, mother, children, brothers, sisters and his own life “less” than God is not worthy of Him. Anyone who doesn’t love everyone who’s important to them less than Jesus isn’t worthy of Jesus.

Jesus set a very high standard here. We all love our family and relatives; we love our own life too. In this passage, Jesus was saying, “You can’t be my follower unless you love them less.” Some people take this as a strict command literally. For them, this is all too much; this is all too hard.

Sounds impossible?

You might say to yourself, “I really love my wife; I really love my mother and brother, I really love my friends; I love my own life. I can’t love Jesus more. What does He expect from me? I can’t do it.”

The apostle Paul said, “I can do all things through Christ that strengthens me (Philippians 4:13).” We cannot do it in the natural; but with the Holy Spirit’s help, we can love Jesus more than our loved ones and even our own life. And to be honest, until Jesus is in that place, life simply is not as rich as it can be.

I know this can be a scary sort of verse. But this is what the Christian life is going require of you. This is the way you have to be prepared. When we make a decision to follow Jesus, it is with all our heart; with everything we have, no holds barred. It is like saying, “I’m going to devote my life to Him more than anything. I’m going love Him more than anyone.”
You see, the trouble is when you become a Christian and you start to act in godly ways, sometimes your family start to act differently towards you. If you are the only Christian in your family, there may be persecutions and tribulations.

Let’s get some more context in verse 28, “And whoever does not bear his cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple.”

Here, Jesus was saying that if you want to be a disciple, there’s going be a price to pay. It is one thing to say you love Jesus; it’s another thing to be a disciple. A disciple is someone who practices everything that Jesus taught.

The parable starts in verse 28:

28 For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost, whether he has enough to finish it— 29 lest, after he has laid the foundation, and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, 30 saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish’?

Living the kingdom way is hard. When people around you find out you’re a Christian, they are going to be watching you, just like the builder of this tower. It is not going to be easy leaving your family and loved ones for the sake of Christ.

Let’s say you are going build a block of apartments, rent them to people, and make a lot of money. It was your dream and you started in faith. You had a good job and you are confident that you could arrange the finances for the construction. What if in the middle of the project, you suddenly lost your job and you couldn’t pay the loan back? The work stopped suddenly and you felt really foolish.

Or if you had money and you projected a cost but you made a wrong calculation. It says here that before you start something like this, you should sit down with proper accountants and cost analysts for the projection. Because if you start putting up half block of apartments and then you stop building due to bad finances, everyone in the neighborhood is going to laugh at you.

In this passage, Jesus was essentially saying that the Christian life is like that. If you decide to become a Christian, people are going to watch you. And believe me, they are going to laugh at you, mock you and cause all sorts of trouble in your life.

However, Christian life is not at all that bad. Once you get in touch with Jesus and move in the right direction, Christian life is a joyful experience, albeit difficult. It’s not something that should be taken lightly.

Through this book, I encourage you to make the decision to give your life to Him. Say the prayer written in the appendix of this book and see the Holy Spirit come into your life.

For some Christians, things may not go as well as you thought they would. Maybe you’re stuck, depressed, hurt, broken, you don’t have vision, you don’t know the purpose of your life, you’re not being used, you’re not fulfilled. Well, that’s not the life God had planned for you. God’s has a life for you where you live in total abandonment to Jesus Christ and your life is fully surrendered to Him.

A ship without the sails up just doesn’t go anywhere. But it takes a lot of effort to put those sails up and once they’re up the boat meets the resistance of the wind and it sails. And now a boat not only sails with the wind but can go against the wind in a tack and the wind is a very necessary thing for a sailing boat.

Now, if you haven’t got your sails up in your life to catch the spirit of the living God; if the wind can’t move in your sails; if you haven’t given your life to God and say, “I surrender, Lord”; if you’re still trying to run your own life and not allowing the Holy Spirit to give you directions, you’re like a ship with no sail up, you’re going nowhere.

If you are hundreds of miles at sea, you’ll starve and you get in a desperate condition and the seas will break all over you if your sails aren’t up. You got to learn how to move in the Holy Spirit. But you need to know that Christianity comes with a cost and if you’re one of those people who made a decision for Christ and you think it’s not working for you now, just take comfort in the fact that Jesus warned us in this parable.

Know that you can have love, success, joy and peace; God can turn tremendous suffering into tremendous joy. You can have purpose in life. Your sin-muddied life can turn into a life of holiness and righteousness.

You can be transformed by God but it comes at a cost. Be prepared to pray to the Lord and surrender your life fully to him. Ask Him to take control.



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