Friday, September 12, 2008
By Ramone - September 11, 2008 (part one of two)
"Come, take up the cross, and follow Me."
- Mark 10:21This is the cross to be carried, that we carry. It's rough and uncomfortable. Every splinter, crack and crevice is made just for me -- to hurt what I do not need, and build up my strength for what I do need. It's made especially for me, with every rough part tailored to prick each part of me in just the wrong way (that is, the right way).
Our cross is meant to crush the very life out of us, just as hanging on the cross made breathing difficult for the one being crucified. Christ hung there, being crushed under the weight of crucifixion (but more by our sins) until He voluntarily surrendered His Spirit to His Father and breathed His last.
Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered.
- Hebrews 5:8In a similar way, although our cross is not made for atoning for our sins, our cross is made to be "heavy" for our flesh to bear, so that we have no other way to go on but by giving our breath & very life to the Father in surrender to Him. He gives us our cross to bring us to voluntary submission to Him, and in His strength we will be able to go on, finish the course, and drink the cup He sets before us, hallelu Yah! He will give our sufferings to us as a crown... He will redeem them and bring life out of them. And the "marks" on us will speak of life, of His life!
And He was saying to them all, "If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the good news, he is the one who will save it. For what is a man profited if he gains the whole world, and loses or forfeits himself... his soul?"
- Luke 9:23-25 & Mark 8:34-36"And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. He who has found his life will lose it, and he who has lost his life for My sake will find it."
- Matthew 10:38
Where did the church lose the truth of these things? Instead we want to lay ourselves down in palaces and let Jesus bear the cross alone.