I teach the bible at my church.
I'm not a scholar, but every now and then I believe I get some light shed on some passages that I like to share.
My pastor was speaking this morning about Luke 14:25,
26 If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.
This verse has always caused me some problem, trying to explain it to non-believers.
Ours is not a religion of hate as it is accused of being by some.
I always felt that "hate" here meant "love less", but when reading the Strong's definition of the greek, it's clear that it means "hate" or "to despise".
Then I got it.
My pastor's focus was primarily on "counting the cost" and he used the example of a brand new pickup costing around $40,000, so if you buy it, expect to pay over the next ten years (if you could get a ten year term) $4,000 a year, or $333.33 a month (not including interest and full coverage for the term of the loan, tires, oil, etc).
In other words "count the cost", evaluate what your getting vs what you'll pay.
I spoke to him after the service and told him that I once had a 1994 F-150 that as beat up as it was, I liked and was satisfied with. But if I was given a brand new F-150, I might come to despise the older.
After driving the new, and then being denied it, I'd hate driving the old.
If I was shown the world to come that is offered by Jesus to those that sign up, would I not come to despise this world and all that was in it, relative to the glory revealed to me?
And if my parents, brothers, sisters, children and friends didn't want to sign up for it, should I let them hold me back?
Sometimes we have to make hard choices in our own self-interest.