“What will you gain when you lose?”  It’s the slogan for a weight loss product (Special K?) and a good question, but it’s not a new question.  Jesus was trying to ask the very same thing back in His day!

What did the people have to lose?  Jesus found many things!  Unbelief, unforgiving hearts, fear, hatred, sinful ways, storing up worldly goods, guilt, shame, status, pride, and beliefs in other gods.   Jesus even asked some people to give up their possessions, jobs/careers, and livelihoods to follow Him.

Wow.  That’s a lot.  Why would Jesus ask for so much from people He was trying to help and serve?  Because Jesus knew what people could gain when they were willing to lose. Jesus knew these things were preventing people from turning their hearts over to Him and truly following Him; and that true reward would come from living for the Lord, not living for the world.  

Things aren’t any different for us today.  The same things that got in the way of following Jesus then still get in our way today.

Luke 9:23-25

Then he (Jesus) said to the crowd: “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must put aside your selfish ambition, shoulder your cross daily, and follow me.  If you try to keep your life for yourself, you will lose it.  But if you give up your life for me, you will find true life.  And how do you benefit if you gain the whole world, but lose or forfeit your own soul in the process? 

Back to the title question :   What will you gain when you lose?