Playing for Time

by Greg Laurie on Jan 20, 2023
Then He said to another, “Follow Me.” But he said, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.
—Luke 9:59

If you didn’t understand the culture of the day, it would seem rather heartless of the Lord to say what He said: “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and preach the kingdom of God” (Luke 9:60 NKJV).

Jesus had just called someone to follow Him, but the man replied, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father” (verse 59 NKJV). It would seem to us that this man’s father just died, and he was getting ready to bury him.

But that wasn’t the case. This was a Near Eastern figure of speech referring to a son’s responsibility to help his father in the family business until the father died and the inheritance was distributed.

So, when Jesus said, “Follow Me,” it appears the man already was a believer, and this was a call to service. It seems as though the Lord was calling him to a deeper level of commitment.

But this person was making excuses. He was saying, “I have to wait until Dad is gone and the inheritance is divided. I can’t make a commitment like that right now.” He was playing for time, believing that when his father eventually did grow old and die, Jesus would be long gone and he wouldn’t have to worry about it.

Has God called you to serve Him in some capacity? Maybe He has spoken to your heart and said, “I want you to serve Me with the gifts that I have given you.”

But you’re saying, “I would love to, but I am so busy here. I have this business. I have this passion. I’m a little too busy to serve You right now. I have bills to pay, fun to experience, and family to be involved with. I just don’t have time.”

Don’t be like this person and make up excuses. Respond to His call.

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