Called to Be Like Jesus? Joyously…except..

Devotional Thought of the Day:

33  I, too, try to please everyone in everything I do. I don’t just do what is best for me; I do what is best for others so that many may be saved. 1  And you should imitate me, just as I imitate Christ. 1 Corinthians 10:33-11:1 (NLT)

213    Jesus suffers to carry out the will of the Father. And you, who also want to carry out the most holy will of God, following the steps of the Master, can you complain if you meet suffering on your way?

Also they teach that this faith is bound to bring forth good fruits, and that it is necessary to do good works commanded by God, because of God’s will, but that we should not rely on those works to merit justification before God.

As I approach Holy Week and Easter Sunday, I begin to think about the cross, and I think about Christ dying for us. It is a sobering thought, but it something of us as well. 

Paul describes it as “imitating Jesus”, Jesus invites us to follow accompany him.

And we are all for it, we will gladly follow Jesus to heaven, we will gladly let Him show us the way to the Father.  We will gladly take on the hordes of hell, the armies of atheism, the alliance of agnostics. and all the religions of the world.  We will pound them into the ground, assured of our victory and the demise of those who would denigrate us.

Wait a minute.

You need to be careful here… before you go out to war before you take on the world in spiritual warfare…

How did Jesus defeat evil both the demonic and the evil within us?

Yeah, he took up his cross… and died.

Paul describes it as doing what is best for them – so that they may be saved.  The Augsburg Confession talks of this as the good fruit that comes from obeying Christ, and St Josemaria notes the illogic of saying you want to carry out the will of God, and then complain when you find it too taxing, too hard.

This life we’ve been chosen and empowered to live, walking in the steps of Jesus, isn’t supposed to be easy. It isn’t supposed to one continuous moment that is fun and frivolous.

It is a life with Jesus… it is a life spent in the presence of God, therefore it is a life where love requires us to be patient, to sacrifice for others best, to love, and to desire the other person to be freed by forgiveness. That we desire their peace more than the trauma it requires to free them from guilt and shame and our wrath.

This isn’t easy, and more than it was easy to hear that we are sinners in need of Christ’s grace.

But it is what happens to us when Jesus changes our hearts and minds… and the Holy Spirit begins to transform us into Jesus image.

So take up your cross, and walk with Him…. the joy is worth it… take His word for it!

Escriva, Josemaria. The Way (Kindle Locations 607-609). Scepter Publishers. Kindle Edition.

— Augsberg Confession, The

About justifiedandsinner

I am a pastor of a Concordia Lutheran Church in Cerritos, California, where we rejoice in God's saving us from our sin, and the unrighteousness of the world. It is all about His work, the gift of salvation given to all who trust in Jesus Christ, and what He has done that is revealed in Scripture. God deserves all the glory, honor and praise, for He has rescued and redeemed His people.

Posted on March 23, 2018, in Devotions. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. i had to stop myself as I was reading this msg. the thought came into my mind about knowing jesus. and what all of this here means to ME! this has gone well beyond what I know or have come to know in my growing faith. how can I make it to the cross when I cant get past the rail?

    • justifiedandsinner

      The rail is not something that bars you from the cross, but is there to hold you up as He draws you to Himself at the cross.
      Otherwise we would just collapse on the ground

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