Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message #160
TEXT: Luke 14:25-33
During our first three messages in this series, we began discussing some of the things that hold Christians back from being fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ. Based on Jesus' words in Luke 14, we saw that some people are caught up in the enthusiasm and excitement of the crowd -- they enjoy the good times with Jesus -- but they never really venture into the area of full and total commitment. Others may have gotten over the crowd, but they are tripped up by family ties. They experience a tug of war within themselves between what mama has to say and what Jesus has to say. And then, there are those who have gotten over family troubles, but they are hung up on that old, persistent enemy -- self. They are not willing to give up what they desire in order to follow Christ with their whole heart.
Today, we are going to continue looking at what it means to be a true disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ.
1. Taking up your cross means being determined. Jesus Christ says in verse 27, "And whosoever doth not bear his cross... cannot be my disciple." If you are going to be a disciple of Jesus Christ, one of the requirements is that you must bear your cross.
2. Taking up your cross means sometimes walking alone. You might recall that on the night when Jesus was arrested, Jesus said to His disciples, "smite the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered." What He was saying was, when the Jewish authorities come to take me -- when they smite the Good Shepherd, the sheep (that is the crowd, and the disciples) will flee. And, that is exactly what happened.
3. Taking up your cross often means not being able to do what you want. Jesus says in verse 27, "And whosoever doth not...come after me, cannot be my disciple." In other words, you cannot pick up your cross and go your own way.
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