[Thought questions for The Cost of Discipleship March 26, 1014]
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1. A promise of persecution. Have you ever been persecuted? What do you think of Paul’s admonishing us with these startling words: “All who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted”? (2 Tim 3:12). What would you say if Peter was the preacher this week and said we’ve been called to follow in Christ’s steps that lead to suffering. Or [...]
Some tools lived together in a carpenter’s shop. They were having some problems getting along, and some complained that others were not doing their share of work. They met to discuss their issues.
The Hammer spoke first, for he served as the chairman. “Brother Drill,” he began, “you and your family are so noisy. And you seem to spin in circles, but go nowhere.”
The Drill quickly spoke up. “It’s true that I go around in circles, and my work makes noise. [...]
Further Study: Ellen G. White, In the Regions Beyond, pp. 219, 220; Berea and Athens, pp. 241, 242; in The Acts of the Apostles.
Fire comes down from God out of heaven. The earth is broken up. The weapons concealed in its depths are drawn forth. Devouring flames burst from every yawning chasm. The very rocks are on fire. The day has come that shall burn as an oven. The elements melt with fervent heat, the earth also, and the works [...]
Read Hebrews 11:32-12:4. What do these verses say to you, personally, about the cost and the reward of discipleship?
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What a powerful concept this passage reveals, especially in the verse that says: Women received their dead raised to life again. Others were tortured, not accepting deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection (Heb. 11:35, NKJV).
In a sense, being both a disciple and disciple-maker can be boiled down to one thing: a better resurrection. We [...]
Corporations explore the viability of proposed projects through cost-benefit analysis. Do specific proposals contain the ingredients necessary for bringing successful returns on investments? Does benefit outweigh outlay? Another frequently used measurement is durability. Does the proposal offer sustainable returns?
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The rewards of discipleship may likewise be measured through comparison with costs. Those costs may include emotional suffering, social rejection, physical torture, financial deprivation, imprisonment, and death itself. Everyone who undertakes discipleship should first consider carefully [...]
From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him. John 6:66
To outward appearances this was a crushing rejection – the defection of a multitude of disciples. Only a day prior these same defectors were intent on making Him the king of the nation. Their enthusiasm had never been higher as they saw in Him the potential to fulfil all their dreams and desires. Now they turned their backs on Jesus and walked away.
What happened? [...]
Key Thought : In order to be a disciple, we must discipline ourselves. We can’t police each other intensively; we need to keep ourselves under Christ and His law.
[Lesson plan for The Cost of Discipleship March 24, 2014]
1. Have a volunteer read Luke 12:51-53.
a. Ask class members to share a thought on what the most important point in this text is.
b. What does it mean to put Christ before everyone, including family?
c. Personal Application: In what ways do [...]
Analyze the following passages: Luke 14:31-33, 1 Cor. 9:24-27, Heb. 12:1-4, 2 Pet. 1:5-11. What are these texts telling us about the life of a disciple? How have you, yourself, experienced the reality of what the Bible tells us here?
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The cost of discipleship involves discipline. Every impulse, every imagination, every ambition, and every desire must be submitted to Christ. Every possession, physical or invisible, every talent and ability, and everything of value must be [...]
And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple (Luke 14:27).
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Discipleship means accepting Christ as Savior and Lord. Following Jesus means that you are ready to undergo the same suffering that Christ did. Thus, we must be honest in the way in which we present our message. Certainly the glorious truths of righteousness by faith, Christ’s forgiveness, Jesus’ imminent return, heaven’s incomparable wonders, and God’s unmerited grace should [...]
Study Luke 12:49-53; 14:25-26; Matthew 10:37. In what way are we to understand these strong words? What is Jesus telling us here?
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Modern television newscasters would have concocted a prominent scandal from these words. Today, celebrated religious leader Jesus of Nazareth advocated familial hatred during His afternoon address. Analysts are comparing these current pronouncements with previously released statements that promoted loving relationships with neighbors and enemies. Informed commentators wonder if this indicates recent policy shifts. [...]