Do You Count the Cost?
JESUS CHRIST offered his disciples the hope of everlasting life, but he also urged them to count the cost of being a Christian. He illustrated the point by asking: “Who of you that wants to build a tower does not first sit down and calculate the expense [or, count the cost], to see if he has enough to complete it?” (Luke 14:28) What cost did Jesus mean?
All Christians encounter trials—some serious. (Psalm 34:19; Matthew 10:36) Therefore, we need to be mentally and spiritually prepared so that we are not surprised when opposition or other problems come our way. We must already have figured such challenges into the cost of being a disciple of Christ, knowing that the reward—salvation from sin and death—is worth far more than anything that the present system can offer us. Yes, nothing that God permits—even death—can permanently harm us if we continue to serve him.—2 Corinthians 4:16-18; Philippians 3:8.
How can our faith become that strong? Our faith grows stronger each time we make a correct decision, take a firm stand for Christian principles, or carry out an action in harmony with God’s will—especially when we are under pressure to do otherwise. When we personally experience Jehovah’s blessing as a result of our faithful course, our faith is strengthened and deepened. In that way, we follow the example of Jesus, his first disciples, and all the men and women of faith who down through the ages correctly ‘counted the cost’ of serving God.—Mark 1:16-20; Hebrews 11:4, 7, 17, 24, 25, 32-38.