Saturday, June 19, 2010

TAKE UP YOUR CROSS AND FOLLOW ME – June 20th Lk 9: 18-24

1. Jesus prayed alone: It is not recorded that the Lord Jesus ever prayed with the disciples. He prayed for them, He prayed in their presence and taught them to pray but his own prayer life was separate from theirs.
2. He begins with the impersonal question. Jesus was on every tongue – many opinions were given about him. Like men of his own day who called him John, Elijah and Jeremiah, even today he stands supreme among different stars. From impersonal question he moves on to personal question – which is also addressed to all of us.
3. Jesus after outlining his own future (passion, death and resurrection) invites the disciples to take up their own cross. In our frantic effort to acquire all the riches if one misses the true purpose of life, what good would it do them?
Daily Cross could be
· Opposition of loved ones
· The reproach of the world
· Forsaking family and house and lands and the comforts of the world
· Complete dependence on God
· Obedience to the leading of Holy Spirit
· Proclamation of an unpopular message
· A pathway of loneliness
· Organized attacks from established religious leaders
· Suffering for righteousness’ sake
· Slander and shame
· Pouring out men’s life for others

4. Denying self does not mean, denying self-esteem but to let go of selfish desires (craving for positions) and earthly security. Following Jesus does not mean walking behind Jesus but taking the same road of self-denial and self-sacrifice.
5. To gain the whole world one would have to worship the ruler of this world- Satan- because that is the offer he made to Jesus in the desert.

Jesus is calling all of us to carry our daily cross which simply means we are called to shed our Ego. Denying self would call all of us to stop craving for positions and possessions. It is hard to work under someone who may not be as efficient as ourselves, but with faith we need to accept our situations. Our daily crosses are only temporary; we are not going to carry our cross after our death but the things we crave for may offer cross-free life but will eventually have to carry cross for ever.

Believer’s Bible Commentary.
Life Application New Testament Commentary.

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