“So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple.” (Luke 14:33)
Can a man or woman be a Christian but not a disciple? I’ll let you search God’s Word and come to your own conclusion about that, but I do know one thing: Jesus Christ told you in no uncertain terms what He expected in a disciple. (Read the last ten verses of the chapter.) And He had (and has) a perfect right to ask such dedication. As the great missionary, C.T. Studd said, “If Jesus Christ be God and died for me, then no sacrifice can be too great for me to make for Him.” But coming to the place of willingness to give all that we have and are to Him is not always easy. The great English preacher, F.B. Meyer, explained his own crisis experience this way in 1904:
“I remember so well when He came to my heart and challenged me as to the keys of the fortress…Before I gave them to Him I put one small key in my pocket. Have not you done that, and handed to Him the bunch minus that key? He looked at me with those eyes which are as a flame of fire, and said, ‘Are all the keys there?’ I said, ‘All but one, and I cannot give it.’ He gave it back, and said He could not be king at all if He could not be King of everything.’ I put my hand in my pocket where I had hidden it, and said, ‘I cannot give it, but you may take it,’ and He took that tiny key. Then they were all His.”
Our younger daughter, Charity, heard that illustration as a fifteen year old girl and wrote this poem:
LORD OF ALL
You ask me for so many things, more than I can remember,
And now you say there’s one more thing You want me to surrender.
The others weren’t too hard to give; they’re things I wouldn’t miss,
Some I had to struggle with, yet none so much as this.
But can I say you’re Lord of all, if to this thing I cling?
No, not till I’ve surrendered all and given everything.
I’d like to give it to you, Lord, so you’d have all of me,
But I can’t release my treasure; it’s too difficult for me.
Yet before you turn away, Lord, to this one thing I agree,
Since I’ve not the power to give it, You can take it, if You please.