Monday, February 23, 2015

Counting the Cost

This concept is really well known in the business world, perhaps not as well known as it should be in our personal finances, but when it comes to our life direction, it is absolutely essential. In the business world, if we don't count the cost correctly, we might bid low on a job and lose money. In our personal finances, we might start a project and not be able to finish it... or in the worst case, have to declare bankruptcy. When it comes to our life direction, we either determine to follow the Christ or to live our own way. We need to count the cost for these choices.

Let's look at the cost of these choices:

If we determine to live for Christ:
  • We must give up living for ourselves (2 Corinthians 5:14-15).
  • We must be willing to suffer for the sake of Christ (Philippians 1:29, 1 Peter 3:13-17, Matthew 10:22)
  • We must have new priorities--now Christ must take first place (Colossians 1:17-18, 1 John 5:21)
  • We must be willing to give up anything for the sake of Christ, perhaps family, friends, jobs, possessions, health, money, comforts, etc. (Luke 9:57-62)
  • We must commit for the long-haul... not just for the moment (Matthew 24:13

If we determine to live for ourselves:
  • We will spend eternity separated from God in hell (Revelation 20:11-15).
  • We will live a life of being humbled by God (James 4:6, 1 Peter 5:5-6)
  • We will find ourselves hoping in worthless things that will always let us down (Isaiah 44:9-20).
  • Our lives will ultimately be useless (1 Peter 1:18)
  • We will have no lasting peace (Romans 5:1, 1 Thessalonians 5:3)

We have a decision to make. We must count the cost of both options. We would do well to carefully consider the words of Jesus. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world, and forfeit his soul? This is not an easy choice, but is the most important choice we will make.