All Christians Must Die (Part 2)

2 Sep

This is what Jesus meant when he said, “He that loves his own [fleshly] life will lose it!  Christians that choose not to respond to the Holy Spirit’s beckoning and prompting to lay down one’s life (i.e. their own carnal dreams, lusts, ambitions and desires) will lose much on the final day when the whole earth is judged.  They will be ashamed as they will have so little fruit to bring to Christ!  These Christians will suffer great loss as they will have to relive with horror every act – every intent of the heart – those things that they thought were “good deeds” before the eyes of a Holy God.  Christ, with a broken heart will say “no that was not from me” while burning up many of their works before them.  They may escape the judgments of hell, but will have little reward throughout eternity.  They will have to live with the fact that they could have done so much more for Jesus while they were alive.  Their deeds will be counted as filthy rags and will not stand the fire and purity of Jesus’ gaze.  Oh what an awful day awaits Christians that play games with the Word of God!

If we wish to live like Jesus lived, then let us examine what he truly was like.  Jesus said in Matthew 16:24: “If any man wants to follow me, let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow me.”  And again in 1st John 2:6: “He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.”  That’s is what it truly means to be a Christian.

Going back to our original text (John 12) we read in verse 26-27: “Now is my soul troubled and what shall I say?  Father save me from this hour?  But for this cause I came into the world –  Father, glorify your name!”  This is the clearest example we have of what it means to live according to the Spirit and detached from our own carnal lusts and desires.  Jesus had to make a decision, one that in so doing would change the course of history.  Yet, as a man he felt terrible sorrow as he knew his decision to go to the cross would mean extreme amounts of mental and physical pain – more pain than anyone one us reading I believe ever had to or ever will endure.

It was not that Jesus had to die – he had done nothing worthy of a Roman death on the cross.  But he knew what his purpose was, and as always, was obedient to the loving heavenly Father.  We too, can and should know our purpose – why God put us on this earth – and thus be willing to follow that path until Jesus takes us home to be with him in glory.

The longer I am a Christian, the easier it becomes for me to, as Paul the apostle says – die daily.  The reason, I believe for this is that I know the fruit that I produce for my heavenly Father when ever I choose to submit my will to his own.  I am not yet perfected, and I know I can easily stumble – but not for too long.  Proverbs 24:16 says, “For a righteous man falls seven times, and rises up again, but the wicked are overthrown by calamity.”  I have become very sensitive to what the Spirit wants to do – and thus I know my heavenly Father is well pleased with me.  This is not always easy, but I do know the joy that comes from being a follower of Jesus.  That is what it means to be a disciple.

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