(KJV.) MARK 8:34-36
(34) And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
(35) For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel's, the same shall save it.
(36) For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?
THE CALL IS CONTINUES
Brethren, as branches of the vineyard of glory, the body of Christ; it is easy to claim to be parts of his body, call ourselves his followers than to actually do his will; there are several agendas of Jesus Christ to accomplish through believers, before his second coming to earth; Isaiah heard the voice of Lord, saying, "who shall I send, who will go for us?, Isaiah answered, Here I am sent me. (Isaiah 6:8); when he heard the voice of the Lord, voluntarily, he answered to go on the assignment for the Lord; therefore, as believers, we already answered to the call of Jesus Christ, saying, to come unto him with all our labors and heavy laden, received rest for our souls, (St. Matthew 11:28); therefore, we answered to his voice, came unto him, have salvation, grace, life everlasting; consequentially, the necessary steps to take after we became born again, is to exemplify ourselves in him, do what he would do, such as, love one another as ourselves, show compassion to afflicted and sufferings souls, preach the gospel with good faith, utilize gifts and talents for his glorification, do his will in his Holy Name: be readily available to step up, to be used mightily by him to accomplish his purposes in the world of darkness.
In reference to the above text, Jesus Christ was with his disciples, called the other people unto him, said; "Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me."; let us analyze this text in segments, (i) Whosoever will come after me, that means not everybody will come after Jesus, but those who chooses to follow him willfully, will come unto him; therefore, are we really followers of Jesus Christ? If we are, then let us do what his disciples do, reach out to the world, preach the gospel unto all nations: the next command, (ii) let him deny himself; ah ooh! to deny oneself?, what does Jesus mean, in this statement?, to deny one's self in this aspect means, to give up rights, lustful desires of the flesh, focus entirely on spiritual agendas for the sake of Jesus Christ, his righteousness; for example, to have a desire to do something, yet refrain from doing that thing, for the sake of doing something else more important, for the benefit of others, to self-deny in the world of darkness is a difficult task, because of worldly distractions, obstacles, hindrances from the world of darkness, yet it is doable; others have done it in the past, currently doing it, we can do it too!; therefore, let us be in spirit at all times, resist worldly temptations, focus entirely on Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior do his will: (iii) and take up his cross; but what do the cross represent in this aspect?, it represents, hardships to endure while following Christ, Jesus encourages believers to step up to faith challenges, endure hardships, sufferings, persevere, forbear all things: Jesus bore heavy wooden trunks nailed together for his own crucifixion, after beaten up many times, he never gave up the Father's will, but persevered, carried his cross to Calvary, and was crucified upon it to save the world from bondage of iniquities; therefore when he mentioned the cross in his speech to the people, he knew exactly the sufferings he had to endure, however, the disciples did not know or understood what he spoke about, because it was not yet time for him to bear the cross that he spoke about, that humanity may perceive what his mission entails; therefore, as followers, we will suffer like he suffered when he carried his cross while we do his will, it also a warning to followers that on faith journeys there will be obstacles, however, regardless, one has to endure sufferings, do his will to the end of their days, receive eternal rewards; (iv) and follow me: that is the easiest part, if we can do all the above, we are certified to follow him, no demonic spirit will be able to derail believers from his righteousness ever; therefore, let us believe in him, do his will, even through persecutions and martyrdoms, Jesus is aware, on our sides forevermore.
Dearly beloved, as we do the will of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior, let us not be timid, fear for our lives, but rather be bold and brave Christians called to affect positive changes within the world of darkness; we are called to serve, be light of the world, shining examples of Jesus Christ, when he was on earth, before his ministry, he served as a carpenter boy, during his ministry, he ministered to multitudes, healed the sick, the lame walk, blinds saw, and raise up the dead; even to the end of his ministry on earth, he served his disciples, by washing and wiping their feet with towel. (St. John 13:5); therefore, every believer has a call to serve, whether we realized this as a fact or not, we are all gifted people on earth to serve one another; therefore, whatever our gifts and talents are, those are the areas we need to focus our minds, utilize our gifts to the maximums, for intended purposes of Jesus Christ: the subject about callings, is not for ministry alone, callings are for humanity as an entity; for humanity to function collectively as a system engineered by Jesus Christ for glorification of the Father; therefore, let us do our best in everything we do, serve one another wholeheartedly as we serve our Father through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior forever and evermore. Amen and Amen!
QUOTE OF THE DAY:
(KJV.) St. Matthew 10:38 And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.