57As they were going on the road, someone said to Him, “I will follow You wherever You go.” 58And Jesus said to him, “The foxes have holes and the birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head.” …
57¶ And it came to pass, that, as they went in the way, a certain man said unto him, Lord, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest. 58And Jesus said unto him, Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath …
Why is the kingdom of God so divisive? It may seem strange to say that Jesus and His message are a source of controversy and division, but in this sermon on Luke 9:57–62 titled “Entering the Kingdom,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones shows that it is just that. Jesus’s call is to follow Him and to become a member of His kingdom. It is a call to put Him above all things and Jesus takes precedence of all earthly comforts, even one’s own family. This is the radical message of the gospel: it tells that Jesus is everything and that His kingdom is now the most important thing in life. All conceptions of the kingdom of God that do not challenge the sinful human conception of power and the meaning of life are not the message that Christ brings. This sermon tells that Jesus has come to save and that nothing one does can bring about the kingdom of God. No amount of good works can bring heaven on earth, for the gospel is the only power of salvation. Only the gospel confronts with the need for salvation and God’s Savior, Jesus Christ.
- The sermon begins by introducing the passage from Luke 9:57-62 which describes Jesus’ encounters with three men who want to follow him.
- The first point is that it’s important to have the right understanding of the nature and character of God’s kingdom. The first man was enthusiastic to follow Jesus but didn’t understand the true nature of Jesus’ kingdom.
- Jesus rebukes the first man, saying “foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head.” Jesus’ kingdom is not like earthly kingdoms. Jesus has no place of His own and will suffer and die.
- The second man wants to follow Jesus but first bury his father. Jesus rebukes him, saying “let the dead bury their dead, but you go and preach the kingdom of God.” The kingdom of God is urgent and must come before all else.
- The third man wants to follow Jesus but first say goodbye to his family. Jesus says “no one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.” The kingdom demands total commitment and undivided loyalty.
- The kingdom of God is the only hope for the world. Nothing else can solve man’s problems and put the world right.
- The kingdom of God is not like man’s kingdoms. It does not appeal to man’s enthusiasm or make it easy to follow. The kingdom is not a popular movement but a call to die to self.
- The three men illustrate common misunderstandings about the kingdom. The first man misunderstood the nature of the kingdom. The second man failed to see the urgency of the kingdom. The third man lacked total commitment to the kingdom.
- Entering the kingdom demands a right understanding of Jesus as the Son of Man who has come to die, not gain popularity or success. It requires urgency, total commitment, and unconditional surrender.
- The world offers fleeting pleasures but the kingdom offers lasting treasure. We must give up all for the surpassing worth of knowing Christ.
Sermons on the Kingdom of God
Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.