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Sacrifice

18. And when Jesus saw great multitudes about Him, He gave a command to depart to the other side. 19. Then a certain scribe came and said to Him, "Teacher, I will follow You wherever You go." 20. And Jesus said to him, "Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head."

Matthew 8:18-20


Jesus lived a life of sacrifice here in the earth. His entire ministry was designed to bring Him to the place of carrying out the ultimate sacrifice, His crucifixion, to save the entire world. His example is an exemplary one for all of us who call ourselves His disciples. He demonstrated for us what true sacrifice looks like and if we are to follow Him, we must do so in like fashion.


Here in this text we have Jesus, fresh off what we would call a healing crusade, where He healed many who were sick and cast out many demon possessed people who were brought to Him. He then takes a look around and sees a great multitude of people in His immediate vicinity. Once He sees them, he gives a great command to depart to the other side.


At this point, the bible tells us a great scribe comes to Jesus and says to Him, seemingly with lots of excitement and good intention, "Teacher, I will follow you wherever You go." Right here, in my imagination, I believe Jesus is like "aight bruh I hear you talkin but is you really ready?" (Pardon my ebonic vernacular but that's just how I hear him saying this in my head lol) Jesus then says something that is quite interesting, yet amazing to get across the point of this blog. He tells this eager scribe "Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head." Not what you would expect Him to say to someone who seems eager to follow Him when so few others are.


What Jesus is doing is communicating the level of sacrifice it will take to follow Him and go where He wants to take you. It's not about convenience, but purpose. Following Christ and being His disciple requires a level of sacrifice that most aren't willing to endure. I love the fact that He makes this known up front before they ever go anywhere together. He gives us the opportunity to make the decision to follow with real, raw facts about the level of sacrifice required before we even get started on the journey. That way, we can choose to follow or not, having been given full information to make that choice with.


We can never choose convenience over purpose. If we do, we will never reach the levels God has called us to. Those levels will require sacrifice and we have to be willing to give something up for the greater cause. Jesus even told another person in verse 21-22 who wanted to bury their dead father and then come with Him to "Follow Me, and let the dead bury their own dead." Can you imagine Jesus telling you this if you were in that situation? Jesus was serious about the level of sacrifice necessary to follow Him. It's important that we get this revelation.


There's one last interesting part of this story that I want to expound on before I end this blog. As I was meditating this text, I couldn't for the life of me understand why Jesus chose to use foxes, birds, and their places of living/resting/dwelling as the analogy for what He was trying to get across. Why not use other people? I'm sure he could have said "many people have houses to rest and sleep but the Son of Man has no place to lay His head". So why didn't He? Why did He choose to use animals (foxes & birds)?


I believe it was to communicate the DEGREE of His sacrifice...to let us know that it was HIS CHOICE to be in that condition, not a lack of God's provision. He lowered Himself even below God's provision for animals. Certainly if God provides for animals, He will provide for His own Son right? Yet here Jesus was, void of something that even animals had the luxury of experiencing. The only way He wouldn't have that provision is if He CHOSE to renounce it on His own....which He did. Therefore, we must choose similar sacrifices to follow Christ as well.


Sacrificing is a choice. So I ask you today, what will you choose to and be willing to sacrifice to follow Jesus? What are you willing to give up voluntarily to reach the level you want to go to financially? Can you sacrifice that car, clothes, food, relationship, materials, etc? Can you sacrifice that money to sow into someone else's life if God ask you to? These are only a few of the choices you will have to make if you are going to reach the level God has for you and follow Christ. I hope you make the decision today to live a sacrificial life. I promise you, there's no life greater in the world!


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