“Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. And a person’s enemies will be those of his own household. Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. (Matthew 10:34-39 ESV)
The gospel is a powerful message as it can come between people who once had the closest of relationships, such as father and son, daughter and mother. If one hears and believes and the other doesn’t, they become enemies. In some cultures, a family member who puts his faith in Jesus can lead to his rejection by his family or worse, death. And though the family is a very important relationship, it is not more important than the believer’s commitment to Jesus. Faith and obedience in Christ takes precedence over everything. You must be willing to lose your old life for the sake of Jesus to find new life in Him.
Lord, there are things far less than death threats that tempt us away from full obedience to Jesus. The temptations of our culture are so subtle they often come under our radar. Would you help us to be more alert and more in love with Jesus to be swayed from following him? You are an awesome God!