THE COST OF TRUE DISCIPLESHIP
And he said to (them) all, If any (man) will come after me,
let him deny himself,
and take up his cross daily, and follow me.
Following the Lord Jesus Christ means self-denial. We cannot love the world, riches and other situations and faithfully serve the Lord. There has to be a change from the things of the world, and the sins which easily beset our lives.
Jesus told the disciples and the rich young ruler, that they must make a conscious decision concerning their desire to follow Him. The same instruction rings true today for us that if we are to be true believers in Christ. We cannot love the world and the Lord at the same time. There has to be a separation which indicates self-denial and bearing the cross even as Christ did for us.
Another very important point is that we must surrender our wills to God, and turn our lives over to Him as living sacrifice, which is what He desires of us (Romans 12:1-2). We will not make it any other way, but the way of the cross.
If we are going to follow the Lord, we must put Him first, otherwise our efforts will be in vain. We have to give up the old lifestyle to please Him. God requires obedience, faithfulness, honesty, reliability, sincerity and so many other qualities which are produced through the working of the Holy Spirit and grace.
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