19 November 2013 |



Luke 9

New Living Translation (NLT)

Peter’s Declaration about Jesus

18 One day Jesus left the crowds to pray alone. Only his disciples
were with him, and he asked them, “Who do people say I am?”

19 “Well,” they replied, “some say John the Baptist, some say
Elijah, and others say you are one of the other ancient prophets risen
from the dead.”

20 Then he asked them, “But who do you say I am?”

Peter replied, “You are the Messiah sent from God!”

*Jesus Predicts His Death*

21 Jesus warned his disciples not to tell anyone who he was. 22 “The
Son of Man must suffer many terrible things,” he said. “He will
be rejected by the elders, the leading priests, and the teachers of
religious law. He will be killed, but on the third day he will be
raised from the dead.”

23 Then he said to the crowd, “If any of you wants to be my
follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross
daily, and follow me. 24 If you try to hang on to your life, you will
lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it.
25 And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but are
yourself lost or destroyed? 26 If anyone is ashamed of me and my
message, the Son of Man will be ashamed of that person when he returns
in his glory and in the glory of the Father and the holy angels. 27 I
tell you the truth, some standing here right now will not die before
they see the Kingdom of God.”

The Western world has done a great job of turning Salvation, and
following Christ, into a 3 part prayer (thank you, sorry, please) and
a 90 minute service once a week. Jesus was somewhat more hardcore
about what it means to follow Him. He said right near the end of His
ministry that being a follower of His means turning from our own
selfishness, and giving up our ambitions to live our own lives.
Rather, we are to give up our lives for the cause of Christ. That
speaks of sacrifice!

Sacrificial worship. Sacrificial giving. Sacrificial service. These
are terms that have been included in ‘Christianese’ (the language
only Christians understand). But really, /all/ worship should be
sacrificial, because God deserves for us to step out of our comfort
zones and adore Him because He is magnificent. All giving should be
sacrificial because everything we give was given to us by God in the
first place, and if our giving is not sacrificial (if it doesn’t
hurt a little giving it up) then it doesn’t have much value. All
service should be sacrificial. We should be giving more time to God
and to the extension of His Kingdom, than anything else. More time
than we devote to social gathers; gym; recreation; hobbies. The Holy
Spirit has empowered us with gifts and abilities so that we can use
those to further the Kingdom of God. When the Kingdom has been
furthered sufficiently, Jesus will return. The Kingdom is going to
extend pretty slowly if Christians are devoting less than 2 perfect of
their weeks to serving Christ (recent survey in the USA revealed most
Christians spend less than 2 hours a week serving God practically).

Being a follower of Christ requires effort, energy, time, sacrifice.
But, afterall, it comes with that incredible promise that if we are
faithful, He will be faithful to us, and the reward of our sacrifice
has eternal benefits.

Take time to examine your own journey. Look at how you worship, how
much you give, and how much you serve? Do these things show God He is
your priority?


Lord you are magnificent and worthy of all worship and adoration.
Today I think you for your continual blessing, favour and faithfulness
over my life and that lives of those I get to do life with. Thank you,
too, for the opportunity to be part of Your Kingdom through worship,
giving and serving. Please help me to do these things in a way that is
both sacrificial, and honouring to You. Amen.

Click here to stop receiving these devotions:

powered by phpList, —

You may also like...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *