Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me.”
June 27, 2019
DENY, DIE AND GLORIFY
Most Christians understand that the mandate of the Church is to make disciples, but comparatively few can provide a clear definition of a disciple. The challenge to this dilemma is that if we are called to make something we cannot define then we will not have success in our endeavors. The good news is that Jesus made clear in the Scriptures His definition of discipleship.
Those who desire to have Christ live His life in and through them must do three things…
- Deny Self: A foundation for discipleship is believing that your life is no longer your own, but it belongs to the Lord Jesus Christ. This means a denial of self. Living for self-esteem, self-worth, self-help, self-pity, self-advancement, self-productivity and other self-promotion are all selfish. A denial of self is a prerequisite to be a disciple of Jesus Christ. There is no way to be or advance as a disciple of Christ if one is not willing to deny self.
- Die to the World: A second requirement for discipleship is dying to the world. The world’s system provides our carnal flesh with everything we need to fulfill our selfish and sinful desires. We must crucify our flesh and desires of this world so that we can live what God desires for us. Taking up our own cross means going public and being willing to openly suffer Christ. The disciple is demonstrating that at one time we rebelled against Christ authority by living for the world and yet now we are rejecting the world and living for Christ alone even though we will suffer.
- Glorify Christ: The words “follow me” are pregnant with meaning and signify the need to allow Jesus Christ to rule and reign in every way in our lives. Once we have denied ourselves and died to the world we are now fit to allow Christ to live His life in and through us. You see, the Christian life is not trying to live for Jesus but allow Jesus Christ to live His life through me.
This is a disciple according to Jesus Christ and is such a needed definition in our culture today. Are you a disciple of Jesus Christ? Why not repent of your sins right now and confess Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior.
Dear Jesus. Please lead my life today for your glory. I repent of the fact I have been living for my own selfish desires and for the things of this world. My life has been unfruitful because of these reasons. I repent of my sins and desire for You to live Your life in and through me. Please take over my life today.. Amen.