People often become disciples of Jesus from desperation, and Jesus is okay with that. But he invites people who aren’t desperate to become disciples too. Do we bring our troubles to Jesus, but forget to bring the parts of our lives that are working pretty well? Pastor Luke teaches from Luke 9:51–62 in “Sticker Shock,” the concluding message in his series “Discipleship.”
Questions for Consideration
OPEN. 1. When have you delayed making a decision when you needed to? Why did you delay? What finally caused you to act? Did the delay matter?UNPACK. 2. Compare the incident in Samaria above with 2 Kings 1: 9–16 where Elijah called down fire on those sent to arrest him. How are they similar? (Consider 2 Kings 2: 11 and Luke 9: 51.) How are they different?
3. Read Luke 9: 1–5. How did Jesus instruct his disciples to handle rejection? Why do James and John think a different method is warranted now?
4. In Luke 9: 57–62, Jesus makes several demands of his disciples. What are they? Why are those things “deal breakers” for the would-be disciples?
People today who join churches are usually called to make commitments. They might be asked, for example, to acknowledge Jesus as Lord and be instructed by the teaching of his church, to gather regularly in worship, to pray and read Scripture, to contribute their material gifts and goods to support the mission of the church, to offer their spiritual gifts by serving in and beyond the church, to work for purity, unity, and peace within the church, etc.
APPLY. 5. What things would you add to or omit from the previous list?
6. Pick a commitment you find difficult to keep. What makes it hard? Imagine saying that to Jesus. Based on Luke 9: 57–62, how might Jesus respond to you? Does he want you to succeed? What help can he give you? (If you’re not a Jesus follower, what commitment would you find hard if you were?)
7. How would your life be different if you kept the commitments required of Jesus followers? What is one thing you can do to move in that direction?