Tag Archives: deny your self

TEACHING THEM WHAT? 110515

Teacher talking with students in the clasroomOK, In Matt. 28:18-20, Jesus says, “I have all authority, so go into all the world and make disciples, baptizing them .  .  .  teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you. .  .  . and [know this] I am with you always, even unto the end of the world [age].”  What does in mean, “all things”?  Some folks would say those things are particular things, like ‘love God with all your heart’, ‘love your neighbor as yourself’, ‘seek first the kingdom of God . . .’, ‘don’t resist evil’; ‘trust in the Lord with all your heart’; ‘rejoice evermore’.

If we really want to ‘make disciples’ maybe we should teach an attitude of surrender; of surrendering ourselves to Jesus; like it says in Luke 9:23, “If anyone wants to be My disciple, let him deny himself, and take up his cross [meaning “die to yourself”](see Galatians 2:20), daily, and follow Me.”  To have the attitude in your heart that comes from Jesus, that says, “I’m not touched by things in this world, because Jesus has put His Spirit in my heart.”  So you get to the point where you really don’t care what happens to you and your stuff, because you’re thinking about Jesus and helping others come to a personal relationship with Him.   That’s something really worth teaching and worth learning.

Like Paul said in Romans 5:3-5, “And not only that, but we also [rejoice] in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces [endurance]; 4 and [endurance], character; and character, hope. 5 Now [this] hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.”  When you get that attitude in your heart, then observing all the things Jesus commanded becomes possible.

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Galatians 2-20. 031415

Open graveOne day I was reading Luke 9:23, where it says, “If anyone would be my disciple, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me;”  and I was thinking about what that means, “Take up your cross daily”.  I heard a number of preachers and teachers say that it means 1 We all have our burdens (problems, troubles, sacrifices) to bear, and each of us has to trust God to bear those burdens in a Christ-like way.  2 Or some say your cross is whatever job or career or ‘calling’ God has called you to, and to be a disciple, you must focus your attention on doing that calling well and properly for the glory of God. Continue reading

BEAR FRUIT? 021215

In John 15:5-8: Jesus says to his disciples, “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned. If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.

Galatians 5:22 says, “The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.”  Matthew 28:19, in Jesus’ Great Commission, He says, in part, “Go make disciples  .  .  .”   What is fruitFruit is two things: 1] the fruit of the Spirit; and 2] disciples we help God bring to Jesus.  If you are filled with the Spirit, [1] you will bear (show, demonstrate, produce) the fruits of the Spirit. You’ll act and talk nice, you’ll be happy and giving and forgiving; you will exhibit the characteristics of love that are discussed in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, “the Love Chapter”.   AND  [2]  You can’t help but tell what you’ve seen and heard about Jesus. (see Acts 4:20) When you do that, others will come to know Jesus; they will become disciples of Jesus; they will become the fruit of your discipleship. Jesus says, in Luke 9:23, “If you want to be my disciple, deny yourself, take up your cross (die to your sinful nature) daily, and follow Me.”  That’s what it means when it says in John 15, “If you abide in Me and I in you, you will bear much fruit.”

I was going to ask, “How do we bear fruit?”, but Jesus already answered it.  So let me add:  God picked us (Christian brothers and sisters) before the foundations of the earth to be His, to be surrendered to Him, to do His will, so He will be glorified, and He will give us whatever we ask because we bear much fruit.  Talk about being in tune with the Spirit!  Praise the Lord, Hallelujah!