Isn’t it sad how completely contrary fleshly people are who do not pursue God through His word and do not follow Christ in the way of the cross to those who have placed themselves on the altar of demonstrated love?
Many think that salvation is the ALPHA and OMEGA of the gospel, when it’s only the beginning of our Christian walk.
Many are spiritually asleep and live complacent lives while they became spectators, even critical and judgmental of those that actually run this race.
Fleshly Christians reasons everything out through their natural minds and stay therefore deceived by their darkened understanding exactly as God said to me that most of His people are offended by the price that love requires through the sacrificial call and commandment which Christ gave to all of us in John 15 that we love one another through a laid down life.
The love of God is a fruit and attribute of His nature and of His Spirit which each born-again seed are supposed to grow into. We can only be brought into His selfless self sacrificial kinda love when we willingly yield ourselves to be slain by the Spirit through the administration and work of our own cross.
Jesus never instructed us to take up “HIS CROSS” because His cross saves us from sin and the consequences of sin if we live a life of repentance. The cross which we are instructed to take up is a call to die to the sinful influence of our flesh which is clearly laid out in scripture.
Romans 8:5 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.
6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.
7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.
8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.
9 But you are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
10 And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.
11 But if the Spirit of Him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He that raised up Christ from the dead shall also bring to life your mortal bodies by His Spirit that dwells in you.
12 Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh.
13 #For if you live after the flesh, you shall die: but if you through the Spirit do put to death the deeds of the body, you shall live.(THIS SPEAKS OF A THOROUGH REPENTANCE WORKED OUT IN US BY THE SPIRIT OF GOD THROUGH THE PRINCIPLE OF THE CROSS)
14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
15 For you have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but you have received the Spirit of adoption, by which we cry, Abba, Father.
16 The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:
17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, so that we may be also glorified together.
18 For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
19 For the earnest expectation of the creation waits for the manifestation of the sons of God.
WE ARE CALLED TO SUFFER THE WORK OF THE PURGING OF THE SPIRIT AS WE EMBRACE THE WORK OF THE CROSS IF WE DESIRE TO BE SUCCESSFULLY CROWNED AND PRESENTED AS OVERCOMERS.
Scripture speaks of this upward call of God to mature in Christ and explains it as a race in which we are called to lawfully compete if we desire to receive the Victor’s Crown.
1 Corinthians 9:24 Know you not that they who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? So run, that you may obtain.
25 And every man that strives for self control is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.
26 I therefore so run, not with uncertainty; so fight I, not as one that beats the air:
27 But I roughly treat my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be disqualified.
This exact same race is explained in Hebrews 12 by which God clearly admonishes His people to undergo the suffering of being disciplined by the Father until He brings forth the fruits of righteousness. This disciplinary process and foundational work can only be accomplished by God in us and each child of God needs to realize that we are called to this, otherwise scripture declares us to be illegitimate unruly rebellious children.
In Hebrews 12 the pathway into the Mountain of God unto mature sonship is clearly explained.
1 Therefore seeing we also are surrounded with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which does so easily ensnare us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
2 Looking unto Jesus the author and perfecter of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.
3 For consider him that endured such hostility of sinners against himself, lest you be wearied and faint in your minds.
4 You have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin.
5 And you have forgotten the exhortation which speaks unto you as unto children, My son, despise not the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when you are rebuked of him:
6 For whom the Lord loves he chastens, and scourges every son whom he receives.
7 If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chastens not?
8 But if you be without chastisement, of which all are partakers, then are you illegitimate children, and not sons.
9 Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh who corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?
10 For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness.
11 Now no chastening for the present seems to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them who are trained by it.
12 Therefore lift up the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees;
13 And make straight paths for your feet, lest that which is lame be turned out of the way; but let it rather be healed.
14 Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:
15 Looking diligently lest any man fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;
16 Lest there be any immoral, or profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of food sold his birthright.
17 For you know how that afterward, when he would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected: for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears.
18 For you are not come unto the mount that might be touched, and that burned with fire, nor unto blackness, and darkness, and tempest,
19 And the sound of a trumpet, and the voice of words; which voice they that heard entreated that the word should not be spoken to them any more:
20 (For they could not endure that which was commanded, And if so much as an animal touch the mountain, it shall be stoned, or thrust through with a spear:
21 And so terrible was the sight, that Moses said, I exceedingly fear and quake:)
22 But you are come unto mount Zion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels,
23 To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, who are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect,
24 And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaks better things than that of Abel.
25 See that you refuse not him that speaks. For if they escaped not who refused him that spoke on earth, much more shall we not escape, if we turn away from him that speaks from heaven:
26 Whose voice then shook the earth: but now he has promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not the earth only, but also heaven.
27 And this word, Yet once more, signifies the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that are made, that those things which cannot be shaken may remain.
28 Therefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear:
29 For our God is a consuming fire.
We have been called to pursue holiness by submitting ourselves to God in every area of our lives. Yes obviously it is a long, intense and deep painful walk but as God declared “THE CROWN IS WORTH THE COST!”
WE ARE CALLED TO OVERCOME TO BE SUCCESSFULLY CROWNED.
Revelation 3:21 To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me in My throne, even as I also overcame and have sat down with My Father in His throne.
No athlete can lay claim to the Victor’s Crown unless he successfully finish the race as the Apostle Paul declared in 2 Timothy 4:7 I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:
8 From now on there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but to all them also that love His appearing.
You do not automatically receive the crown of the overcomer by camping your entire Christian life on the level of salvation while you stay a spiritual infant.
WE ARE CALLED TO OVERCOME OURSELVES AND OUR CARNAL APPETITES, AND THE DEMONS THAT FIGHTS US THROUGH OUR WOUNDED SOULS AND BROKENNESS BY ANSWERING THE UPWARD CALL OF GOD INTO MATURE MANIFEST SONSHIP.
Yes Christ already won the war, but we are made overcomers as we walk with Him through this life battle.
He commanded us to work out our salvation because only the overcomers will receive the crown. God declared to me in 2009 that the crown is worth the cost.
What cost is He referring to?
The sacrifice and the price which it takes to lay down our lives to be made useful in the kingdom, otherwise we stay trapped and enslaved within our selfish ways. The sacrifice of a laid down life by which we are stripped by God of our own rebellious ways so we might grow up as sons and daughters truly led by His Spirit after the order and similitude of Christ.
A selfish selfcentered person cares not for the needs of others and only live to please themselves because they are settled in the rebellion of their own hardened lifestyles.
Few follow Christ in the way of the cross in obedience unto the death of the selfcenterdness of the nature of the earthy Adam which wars within our souls.
Few understand that the human soul must be sanctified by fire, through various trials and renewal of the word.
Are we not commended by God in Romans 12:
1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
2 And be not conformed to this world: but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
3 For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God has dealt to every man the measure of faith.
4 For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office:
5 So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.
6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith;
7 Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teaches, on teaching;
8 Or he that exhorts, on exhortation: he that gives, let him do it in simplicity; he that rules, with diligence; he that shows mercy, with cheerfulness.
9 Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good.
10 Be tender loving one to another with brotherly love; in honor preferring one another;
11 Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord;
12 Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; constant in prayer;
13 Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality.
14 Bless them who persecute you: bless, and curse not.
15 Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep.
16 Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits.
17 Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.
18 If it be possible, as much as lies in you, live peaceably with all men.
19 Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, says the Lord.
20 Therefore if your enemy hungers, feed him; if he thirsts, give him drink: for in so doing you shall heap coals of fire on his head.
21 Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.
Consider your walk beloved!
WE ARE ALL CALLED TO BE CRUCIFIED TO OUR HUMAN WEAKNESS SO WE MIGHT LIVE THE LIFE OF CHRIST BY THE POWER OF GOD.
2 Corinthians 13: 4 For though He was crucified through weakness, yet He lives by the power of God. For we also are weak in Him, but we shall live with Him by the power of God toward you.
5 Examine yourselves, whether you are in the faith; prove your own selves. Know you not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, unless you are counterfeits?
WE HAVE A MIGHTY KING THAT WILL FAITHFULLY WALK US THROUGH THE BATTLE.
We are more than conquerors through Him that loves us.