Discipleship in a Difficult Day
No one has better captured the journey of the Christian life than the 17th century Baptist preacher John Bunyan. His Pilgrim's Progress is a must read and re-read for every one of us.
His picture of the Christian life mirrors our text, as Christian, Faithful, and Hopeful learn to deny self, die to earthly desires, and follow the narrow path of Christ.
I think that it is appropriate to consider these words of Christ to be a description of the Christian pilgrim's journey through this life to eternity.
When you look at Matthew 16 verse 24 the words of our Lord are a little hard to swallow. If any man come after me let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. And he that shall find his life shall lose it and he that would lose his life for my sake shall find it.
And the Lord says three things. One is negative (deny thyself) and the Lord says one thing that is positive. Take up they cross. And the Lord says one thing that is progressive. Follow me and what does the Lord try to say to us.
The Lord says to us discipleship in a difficult day means:-
I. Total Commitment Of The Whole Self.
Deny yourself and pick up your cross and follower me. One over lying principle, one over lying goal, one central meaning, one central purpose, one central priority, one central thing for which we all live for is to be like Him.
The healthiest kind of principle we need today because Christ put His finger on the problem of the church in these difficult days. He said I look out there and everybody looks like they are sheep scatter that have no shepherd they had no bases for living.
And when our Lord said deny thyself and pick up your cross and follower me He was saying give me your total self. Now He is not saying you are to deny your uniqueness or your value or your worth.
You come to Christ denying yourself. And that means you take Christ on His terms, not yours. The proud si ...
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