SN 28 May 2022
Last week explored on how entering heaven is a process
… that involves striving (action, but of faith)
… about finding the narrow gate
… then entering through it
… and persevering through the difficult way that leads to life
– It is not only about saying, but doing as well, particularly doing the will of the Father.
– It is about seeking and going through the straight and narrow
… but all the while ensuring that we don’t fall from grace
… by doing works of the flesh
… but rather laboring to enter into the ‘Rest of God ‘
… through actions that are done in pleasing faith.
We touched on the various crowns that await those who succeed in their walk…
… Crowns > Rejoicing for an Imperishable & Glorious crown(s) from a Righteously lived Life!!
– Noah & Abraham
– Where both strove, against all hope, to do the will of the Father
… and in the process demonstrating pleasing faith to God
… and it being accounted as righteousness.
Today we briefly look at what Jesus said are the requirements to follow Him…
… to be a disciple ( a disciplined follower)
Welcome all & be blessed by today’s Manna 4 Thought…
Luke 9:23-24, 35 NKJV
– Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him
>> Deny himself
>> and take up his cross daily
>> and follow Me.
– For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it.
– And a voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is My beloved Son. Hear Him!”
– .. A disciple is a disciplined follower of the master!!
Or the Amplified Version
Luke 9:23-24, 35 AMP
And He was saying to them all, “If anyone wishes to follow Me [as My disciple], he must deny himself [set aside selfish interests], and take up his cross daily [expressing a willingness to endure whatever may come] and follow Me [believing in Me, conforming to My example in living and, if need be, suffering or perhaps dying because of faith in Me].
– For whoever wishes to save his life [in this world] will [eventually] lose it [through death], but whoever loses his life [in this world] for My sake, he is the one who will save it [from the consequences of sin and separation from God].
– Then a voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is My beloved Son, My Chosen One; listen and obey and yield to Him!”
One of the things that is coming out in the SN series of the past few weeks…
… with all the discipline , trials and tests
… is the notion of total surrender ( sacrifice).
… Am I able to fully surrender to God?
… Give up all for God & trust Him fully?
… and therefore please God with my faith
The essence of love is surrender (sacrifice)…
… where I am willing to give up my own way for the one I love
… For God, who is love, also gave us His dearly beloved Son… 1 John 4:16; John 3:16
>> Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends…John 15:13
>> But God proves His love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us…Romans 5:8
>> By this we know what love is : Jesus laid down His life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers… 1 John 3:16
My total surrender (sacrifice) to God
>> Seeking the will of God first and foremost in all things
… which is essentially that I make Him ruler (Lord) over all aspects of my life
… to do what He wants whenever He pleases…
… – Giving up my own way – denying self
… – Taking up my cross daily – dying to self
… – Following Jesus faithfully to the end
>> Denying self
… basically involves dying to self, sin & the world around
… loving not life to the death… Revelations 12:11
… and being birthed and growing in a life of righteousness
All the while
… Fighting the good fight
… Finishing the race
… Keeping the faith to the end
Striving to find and enter through the narrow gate…
… persevering through the difficult path
… with the Good Shepherd as my shepherd … John 10:11; Psalm 23
Losing life in order to save life !?!
… Jesus ‘lost’ ( gave up, sacrificed) His life
… in order to save mine!!
For me also to save my life ..
… I need to give it up (sacrifice it) …but to Jesus Christ
… The only WAY to the TRUTH of LIFE
… or, the only Way to the Truth about Life
… into the presence of the Father
… now and into eternity
>> Is that how I accept the free gift of salvation??
… my act(ion) of faith?
… I have to give up the ways of the world and the flesh
… and focus on the spirit
>> For God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth… John 4:24
>> Spirit and flesh are contrary and opposed to one another… Galatians 5:17
>> … with no good thing found in my flesh… Romans 7:18
>> … without Jesus I cannot do any (good) thing… John 15:5
But I am the righteousness of God in Christ … 2 Corinthians 5:21
>> My Righteousness – Jehovah Tsidkenu
>> My Holiness – Jehovah Makadesh
He puts on me the
>> The Garments of Salvation & the
Robe of Righteousness … Isaiah 61:10
He opens to me the Gate of the Lord
>> the Gate of Righteousness that I may enter and give thanks to the Lord … Psalm 118:19-20
He leads me in paths of righteousness for His Name’s sake…Psalm 23:3
I can only be Righteous …
… because of Christ
… when in Christ
>> with all our (attempts at our own) righteousness as filthy rags… Isaiah 64:6
Honor (love) is basically shown by obedience & service…
… despite the circumstances
… withstanding (resisting) evil & persevering through the test of faithfulness
.. while walking in the ways of the Lord.
Some aspects entail…
… Walking in the Fear of the Lord
… fearing to offend God in any way
… fear of letting Him down (disappointing Him) in any situation (e.g. Joseph)
… walking in obedience and in diligent & faithful service >> Fear of the Lord??
… indeed, walking in total & unconditional love, for God??
All the while the joy of the Lord strengthening me
… where, all because God, first and foremost, will be happy with me
… I am strengthened and encourage to go on faithfully, despite the circumstances
… Therefore the joy of the Lord being my strength… Nehemiah 8:10
All in all
…Like for Jesus, I would like to also hear God say to me…
… This is my son…listen to him
… That I am indeed considered worthy to ably represent Him and His business
Today when I hear His voice,
… may my heart not be hardened
… but be good and fertile ground
… for His word to take root, grow and bear fruit
… all for His kingdom and glory
For this is the day & now is the time for my salvation
… From the God of my salvation
… My Saviour, Redeemer, the Mighty One of Jacob
Salvation works best with total submission (Lordship)
… May I surrender ( sacrifice, give up) all …
… and exchange it for all His good
An Amazing, Divine Exchange
… The Cross of Christ
… Where I get all His good in exchange for all my bad!!
What Amazing Love!
What Amazing Mercy!
What Amazing Grace!
Thank You Lord God Almighty!