The Tower of Love
Luke 14:25-30 (ESV): Now great crowds accompanied him, and he turned and said to them, (26) “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. (27) Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple. (28) For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it? (29) Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, (30) saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.’
Here we see the Lord Jesus teaching about the cost of discipleship: putting spiritual relationships above natural relationships. You must love the Lord Jesus more than you love your wife, parents, children and even yourself or you will not be able to perfect God’ purpose in your life when these relationships conflict with God’s purpose.
Notice that Jesus Himself had to love His disciples more than He did His mother and natural brothers:
Luke 8:19-21 (ESV): Then his mother and his brothers came to him, but they could not reach him because of the crowd. (20) And he was told, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside, desiring to see you.” (21) But he answered them, “My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it.”
When he was dying on the cross Jesus entrusted His mother to the care of His disciple, John and not to His natural brothers:
John 19:26-27 (ESV): When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold, your son!” (27) Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother!” And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home.
Now Jesus likens our spiritual lives to building a tower and indeed the scripture says:
Proverbs 18:10 (ESV): The name of the LORD is a strong tower; the righteous man runs into it and is safe.
Now the name or character of the Lord is love, so our purpose of our Christian lives is to build a ‘tower of love’ which when it is completed we can run into and live in and so be safe from all fear:
1 John 4:16-18 (ESV): So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. (17) By this is love perfected with us, so that we may have confidence for the Day of Judgment, because as he is so also are we in this world. (18) There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.
1 John 5:18 (MKJV): We know that everyone who has been born of God does not continue to sin, but the one born of God guards himself, and the evil one does not touch him.
When we get born-again the foundation is laid:
1 Corinthians 3:10-17 (MKJV): (10) According to the grace of God which is given to me, as a wise master builder, I have laid the foundation, and another builds on it. But let every man be careful how he builds on it. (11) For any other foundation can no one lay than the one being laid, who is Jesus Christ. (12) And if anyone builds on this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble, (13) each one’s work shall be revealed. For the Day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try each one’s work as to what kind it is. (14) If anyone’s work which he built remains, he shall receive a reward. (15) If anyone’s work shall be burned up, he shall suffer loss. But he shall be saved, yet so as by fire. (16) Do you not know that you are a temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? (17) If anyone defiles the temple of God, God shall destroy him. For the temple of God is holy, which you are.
Now we are to build on this foundation by paying the price of loving God more than we love our natural relations, so we can build with as it were gold, silver and precious stones and so complete or perfect the ‘tower’ or ‘temple’ of love that God can inhabit and so keep us invincible since God is invincible and so keep us permanently free from fear.
The Christian who does not finish or perfect this ‘tower’ of love will be saved so as by fire, like Lot (Genesis 19.15-38); go to heaven but will suffer loss of eternal reward and destiny.
So now let us ‘pay the price‚’ of loving God above all others and so finish and perfect in us the ‘tower’ or ‘temple’ of love!