51 Now as it was getting closer for Jesus to be drawn up into the heaven-determined events of the cross and resurrection, he resolutely set his course for Jerusalem.
52 Jesus sent a vanguard of messengers to make arrangements for his stops along the way. They entered a certain Samaritan village 53 but the residents there were inhospitable toward the advance men because Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem.
This was a precursor of the rejection that would follow once he arrived there.
54 When the apprentices James and John saw this, they said to Jesus, “Boss, do you want us to summon fire from heaven to wipe them out -- like when Elijah called down fire in 2 Kings 1 to kill those soldiers who were disrespecting him?” 55 But Jesus rebuked the apprentices for their response to the insult.
56 So they just went on their way toward another village.
57 As Jesus and his apprentices walked
along the road, someone volunteered to
join him and his entourage, saying, “I
will follow you wherever you go.”
58 Jesus replied, “If you’re going to
follow me you need to understand that
foxes have their dens and birds have
their nests but Uberman is homeless.”
59 Then Jesus invited someone else to
join him -- “Follow me.”
That man replied, “Boss, I need to wait
a bit so that I can go fulfill my
obligation and bury my father.”
60 Jesus said to him, “Let those who are
dead take care of the dead. Your
priority, however, is to go spread the
news of God’s kingdom.”
61 Another person said to Jesus, “Boss,
I’m ready to follow you, but first I need to go get my house in order.”
62 Jesus replied, “Don’t get distracted! Anyone who starts plowing but looks away -- even for a moment -- creates a
crooked row. If you turn away you’re not helping God’s kingdom.”