Then Peter began to say to him, See, we have left all, and have followed you.…
I. IS CHRISTIAN SELF-SACRIFICE WORTH WHILE?
1. A question relocatedly asked, by worldlings and by Christians themselves: by the former because they do not comprehend or perceive the things of God, and by the latter from an imperfect experience and an imperfectly matured spiritual consciousness.
2. Reasonably enough. The privation to which Christianity exposes men is sometimes extreme. They are called upon virtually or actually to renounce all things. Peter not to be accused of sordidness-of a desire to "make the best of both worlds." Life and the things of life are precious gifts with which we should not lightly or aimlessly part; and the neophyte in Christian life cannot be expected to have all his aims perfectly spiritual. Christianity is a means of raising men from the carnal to the spiritual, and it does so by gradually spiritualizing the desires and interests of the soul. It is an instinct of our being not to part with a real, tangible good unless in exchange for another of equal or higher value, although not necessarily estimated from a selfish or self-regarding point of view.
3. It is only from the highest point of view and he most advanced experience that this question can be properly and adequately answered. There is, therefore, a Divine fitness in Jesus, our Example, being the Answerer and Judge. Yet out of the most imperfect experience of the Divine life, if that experience be properly interpreted, the answer would still be satisfying and justifying.
II. THE CONSIDERATIONS BY WHICH THIS QUESTION IS DECIDED.
1. The measure of recompense. "A hundredfold:" an estimate not to be literally construed. It is intended to express "overwhelmingly more." "In the preceding verse the connective between the items is or; here it is and. There is great propriety in the exchange, for here the Savior is giving, as it were, an inventory of the Divine fullness of blessing, so far as it is available for the most ample compensation of those who have suffered loss. And there is, besides, in the spiritual sphere of things a kind of mutual involution of blessed relationships; the sum total of them all belongs to every true disciple" (Morison).
2. The manner of it. It is to be correspondent to the things renounced, although not necessarily similar in kind. "With persecutions: an addition that seems strange, but is justified in the experience of the Christian; as that which is lost is gain (cf. Matthew 5:10; Philippians 1:29; 1 Peter 3:14). He so that which is endured for Christ's sake is a new occasion and factor of blessedness. Suited to the differing conditions of this life and that which is to come. Here there is variety, objectiveness, material embodiment; there there is one grand reward, subjective, spiritual, viz. eternal life. And the relative position of Christians wilt be wry much altered from that which they occupy here. The honor and blessedness conferred will depend, not upon accident of birth or fortune, but upon intrinsic worth and direct Divine appointment. - M.
Parallel VersesKJV: Then Peter began to say unto him, Lo, we have left all, and have followed thee.