“From that time on Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, chief priests, and experts in the law, and be killed, and on the third day be raised. So Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him: “God forbid, Lord! This must not happen to you!” But he turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me, because you are not setting your mind on God’s interests, but on man’s.” Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If anyone wants to become my follower, he must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.” Matthew 16:21-25 NET https://bible.com/bible/107/mat.16.21-25.NET
The meme in my head before church yesterday was Jesus gave His all to be our Savior. We must give our all to be His disciple. The sermon I heard yesterday also called us to be Jesus’ slaves to make Jesus’ will our first and highest priority. This teaching today reiterates these truths. We have made salvation too easy. It is easy at one level for us. We cannot perform a series of noble deeds to appease God’s wrath against us for our sins. We must repent and believe in Jesus alone for our salvation. Easy. Confess our sins, believe He died for those sins, and that He rose again from the dead to pardon us for our sins. Easy for us. Not so much for Him. The humility of God required to express the love of God for us is beyond our comprehension. This great God now requires we love Him with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength just as He loved us. We are not free to believe and return to our sinful way of living. The demons do that. We are free from the bondage of sin that kept us from God so that we are no longer condemned by God and can now please God through obeying everything He has commanded us. We must obey God in Jesus with the same tenacity and zeal He expressed in saving us. If we are truly disciples of Jesus, we will live for the glory of God by doing the will of God just as the Son of God modeled for us when He lived among us as one of us.