Our Lord is telling us that our measure of devotion to Him must be so much greater than our love for our families and ourselves as to seem like hate for them in comparison to our love for Him.  There is a difference in kind and quality, not just in degree, respecting our love for Christ in comparison to our love for each other, or even for ourselves.  Although we should love one another as Christ has loved us (v. 26), discipleship is a matter of life and death, or life and everlasting life.  It is appropriate here to say something about the position of a disciple relative to his/her master.

In Matthew 10: 24 – 25 and Luke 6: 40 the Lord describes the Teacher/disciple relationship in spatial metaphors.  “A disciple is not above his teacher, nor a slave above his master.  It is enough for the disciple to become as his teacher, and the slave as his master.” A pupil is not above his teacher; but everyone, after he has been fully trained, will be like his teacher”.  If we revisit Exodus 33, 11-15, we find that God spoke with Moses “just as a man spoke to his friend.”  This word ‘friend’ in the Hebrew implies the same kind of Master/disciple relationship, a superior/inferior positioning that is implied in the New Testament word, ‘mathetes’.


William H. “Bill” Hicks is a graduate of Wesleyan University, BA, Religion, 1971 who also holds a Masters in Public Health Degree (MPH) from the University of Oklahoma Hudson College of Public Health (1973). Bill also has studied at the Dallas Theological Seminary. He grew up in Harlem, New York City, USA during the 1950s and 1960s, graduating from high school before attending Mount Hermon Preparatory School and undergraduate school in Connecticut. He has spent most of his professional life in the public health arena, while being constantly in ministry. He received his license to preach the Gospel at Oklahoma City, OK in 1971. He has written extensively on Christian topics. He enjoys life in Chattanooga, TN with former District Public Defender Ardena Garth Hicks, his wife of 30 years. They have two daughters, Rachel (BA, University of Memphis magna cum laude, 2014) and Sarah (Phi Beta Kappa, magna cum laude, Global Scholar, University of Tulsa, 2017).
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