The best defence - 15 March 2022

By Xanthe Hancox

Both this parable and the one following it (Luke 14:31-33) about a king drawing up battle plans speak about building a strategic defence. Towers provided a lookout for watchmen to warn against an approaching enemy. Then the king could rally his troops and defend his territory.

But a half-completed building project or a foolish battle plan are both bad ideas. A wise person adds up the figures and considers the costs in whatever needs to be done.

Jesus offers a defensive tactic for success in the battles that await kingdom warriors. The strategy is a strong commitment to preparation.

The life of a disciple includes many trials and tests of faithfulness. At times we lose heart and are ready to give up. But Jesus discloses the secret of success – a decisive commitment to the Word of God.

The repeated theme in these verses is whether you are able to carry out a task. Each of us must ask, “Am I able to be his disciple?” This is a serious question. But Christ has won the victory. Because of Jesus, you and I can say, “Yes, I am able. ‘I can do all this through him who gives me strength.’” (Philippians 4:13) It takes a radical belief in the power of Christ in us to stand firm and endure.

Prayer: Lord, help me count the cost and commit to serving you. Please give me the grace to pursue the course you have given me, and in your strength, to prevail. Amen