THIS Is Eternal Life!
At the beginning of His public ministry crowds seemed to follow Jesus everywhere as He healed the sick, cast out demons and even raised the dead! But Jesus knew their hearts. Much like today, people will follow a “phenomenon,” and that is what Jesus was to most of those who were following Him around the Judean countryside. From the beginning, Jesus made it clear that there would be a cost to following Him; that it would not be easy. It even seemed at times that He discouraged people from following Him, and at the end, even His closest disciples were thinking only of themselves and what they would get out of following Jesus. Perhaps Jesus could have learned something from those who gather large crowds today. He should have been more “positive” and should have made following Him sound more attractive. Instead, Jesus simply told His disciples and others the truth! He told them that following Him would require their lives; that those who followed Him must leave their lives of self-centered pursuits in order to find real life in a life of service to God that would be lived out in service to others. Only those who are born again by the Spirit will either understand or follow Jesus, but for those who do, the reward is great, for “the last shall be first” in God’s kingdom!!