Then Peter answered and said to [Jesus], “See, we have left all and followed You. Therefore what shall we have?” So Jesus said to them, “Assuredly I say to you, that in the regeneration, when the Son of Man sits on the throne of His glory, you who have followed Me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My name’s sake, shall receive a hundredfold, and inherit eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last first.”
When people consider whether to follow Christ and become part of the Church, they might think of what they could lose. For example, in many nations, the decision to become a Christian has real-world consequences such as financial loss or societal ostracism. As Jesus mentioned here, some will lose very prized relationships as a result of their conversion. Whether we are speaking of people, property or simply a person’s good name, we might have to sacrifice a host of things to follow the Lord. Many would call those sacrifices a loss, and I even used that word here to describe the process, but there is no such loss according to Jesus.
We make sacrifices for Christ not because we want something in return, but the scriptures clearly tell us that we certainly receive something in return. Jesus himself said here that those who sacrifice so much because of their faith will receive so much more in return. It is like going before a judge and seeking restitution when something has been taken from you. The hope is that the judge will make you whole by allowing you to recuperate what is gone. Here, Jesus guarantees not only that we will be made whole for these sacrifices but that we will come out ahead. When that day comes, we will see that we have lost nothing at all through those sacrifices.
The mother who must sacrifice her relationships with her children because of her faith might find this to be a hard word. She might find it difficult to believe that she could receive anything that would make up for those relationships. That is why teachings like this take faith. We must believe that what seems so improbable and impossible is the truth because the Lord himself has told us. We must believe that following Christ results in no loss at all but in incredible gain in every single way imaginable. We think we know, but we have no idea what He has in store for us. Father, help us to sacrifice gladly and without a thought of loss but only with the expectation of eternal gain.