. . . Grace is costly because it compels a man to submit to the yoke of Christ and follow him; it is grace because Jesus says: “My yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
On two separate occasions Peter received the call, “Follow me.” It was the first and last word Jesus spoke to his disciple (Mark 1.17; John 21.22). A whole life lies between these two calls. The first occasion was by the lake of Gennesareth, when Peter left his nets and his craft and followed Jesus at his word. The second occasion is when the Risen Lord finds him back again at his old trade. Once again it is by the lake of Gennesareth, and once again the call is: “Follow me.” Between the two calls lay a whole life of discipleship in the following of Christ. Half-way between them comes Peter’s confession, when he acknowledged Jesus as the Christ of God. ~ The Cost of Discipleship, Costly Grace
He who is called the Man of Sorrows had a calling of His own.
So He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up. And as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read. And He was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written:
“The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me,Because He has anointed MeTo preach the gospel to the poor;He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,To proclaim liberty to the captivesAnd recovery of sight to the blind,To set at liberty those who are oppressed;To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD.”Then He closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all who were in the synagogue were fixed on Him. And He began to say to them, “Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” So all bore witness to Him, and marveled at the gracious words which proceeded out of His mouth. And they said, “Is this not Joseph’s son?” He said to them, “You will surely say this proverb to Me, ‘Physician, heal yourself!…”
- To preach good news to those in need of good news.
- To proclaim sight for those who cannot see.
- To give liberty to the oppressed ~ not argue with them about their oppression.
- To heal broken hearts, not condemn them.
- To heal broken hearts, not try to convince them why their pain is invalid.
- To set captives free with no agenda other than freedom ~ “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.” (Gal. 5:1, NIV) Why does Paul warn the Galatians to stand firm? Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty; but the idolatrous yoke of slavery entices many away from the grace-yoke of our tender Shepherd.
- Last but not least, He came, obediently, to the cross.
My Hiding Place
“If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it.”
“After this man, Judas of Galilee rose up in the days of the census, and drew away many people after him. He also perished, and all who obeyed him were dispersed. And now I say to you, keep away from these men and let them alone; for if this plan or this work is of men, it will come to nothing; but if it is of God, you cannot overthrow it—lest you even be found to fight against God.”
Jesus didn’t abandon the cross. Through His grace and help, I won’t leave mine. It is my privilege to join Him in His ministry.
“…Whatever we have heard done in Capernaum, do also here in Your country.’” Then He said, “Assuredly, I say to you, no prophet is accepted in his own country. But I tell you truly, many widows were in Israel in the days of Elijah, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, and there was a great famine throughout all the land; but to none of them was Elijah sent except to Zarephath, in the region of Sidon, to a woman who was a widow. And many lepers were in Israel in the time of Elisha the prophet, and none of them was cleansed except Naaman the Syrian.”So all those in the synagogue, when they heard these things, were filled with wrath, and rose up and thrust Him out of the city; and they led Him to the brow of the hill on which their city was built, that they might throw Him down over the cliff. Then passing through the midst of them, He went His way. ~ From Luke 4
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