The comprehensive cost Jesus is referring to is made explicit at the very end of Luke 14:26, in that following Christ entails a hatred of one’s entire existence. Keep in mind that hating one’s life is not an attempt to throw an increasingly larger pity party, for that would be evidence of great pride. Hating one’s circumstances and hating one’s life are two vastly different things; the former is natural and does not require the Spirit of God; the latter supernatural and necessitating divine help.

Think about what one’s life consists of—relationships, abilities, roles and possessions. In comparison to one’s allegiance to Christ, one must hate all those things in order to be a true disciple. One commentator summarized v.26 this way: “Coming to Jesus means acknowledging Jesus as the preeminent relationship in one’s life, whose costly mission determines the way of one’s life, and whose [lordship] takes precedent over all things in life.[1]”

[1] James R. Edwards, The Gospel According to Luke (PNTC; Accordance electronic ed. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2015), 425.