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The Way of the Cross: Humility and Love

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Jesus tells his disciples he must suffer, be rejected by the cultural, political and religious leaders, and that he must die.

Jesus spoke plainly so that his words could not be mistaken.

But, Peter pulled him aside and rebuked Jesus, speaking for all disciples present.

To take hold of him;
To bring him under control;
To preserve his/their view of the Son of Man and kingdom of Israel

Jesus rebuked Peter and called him Satan!

(as he looked to respond to all of them)

Jesus tells his disciples that they must take up their cross and follow him.

Before you jump to criticizing Peter, ask yourself these questions:

Are you sure that you are so willing to suffer and die?

How are we to be healthy and whole as God intends while suffering to the point of death?

We are often ashamed of what some disciples do.

Are you ashamed of Jesus dying? Do skip over the part about his death?

If we are ashamed of Jesus, he will be ashamed of us.

How can anyone be successful in their mission if they suffer and die?

Many have heard the call to take on the possibility of suffering for us.

Military Members
Medical Workers
Mothers/Fathers
Clergy and Missionaries
It could be anyone, Think of someone who may have done that for you. Can you picture them? How about something that they did for you?

Why did they do it?

There are many reasons, but for most,

They simply cared enough for others to do so.

No one can teach you to care/love others, but God does birth and sustain that desire within you as you do it.

Does the Great Commission feel like a burden to you?
Do you feel like you are being drug along by your cross?

Jesus said his yoke was easy and his burden was light. (Matthew 11:28-30)

Jesus Really Suffered.

Exiled from home and was almost thrown of a cliff by a mob
People were plotting to kill him, and they were being obvious about it

Jesus was becoming ready to die.

Jesus knew his disciples intimately and had compassion on the hurting and hungry.
This is why Jesus continually prayed as his mother Mary did, what ever the will of God was, let it be done to your humble servant.

Jesus’ mission in the Gospel of Mark was to suffer and die.

Jesus was told his disciples that the chief concern of God was to save the world, not to save himself.

The suffering and death that Jesus must undergo is not the end of His reign;
Instead it is part of Him accomplishing His purposes on earth; fulfilling the promise he made to Abraham to save the world through him.

Jesus did not need to suffer or die. He is God in the flesh, the Son of Man.

Jesus said his disciples MUST deny themselves.

In the negative: to suspend our self-concern/our opinions/our rights and our positions
Those who place themselves first, instead of the gospel, will be unsuccessful in their self-preservation goals (v. 37).
In the positive: to do everything that pleases God continually
A part of pleasing God is to tolerate sinners as Christ tolerated us while we are still sinning, but we must not give up our mission spreading the Good News of truth to all who would hear.

Jesus said his disciples MUST be willing to die.

Revolting against established authorities for the Gospel may require his disciples’ lives. And for most, did.

Jesus would die for all because the Father allowed it to be so. No other reason.

He was willing to die for OUR good (well-being & eternal being)

Disciples of Jesus are made able to fulfill this seemingly heavy requirement because his gifts supply the strength for doing his tasks.

By denying ourselves even possibly to the point of literal death for the well-being of others, we suffer with Christ, and

We gain the reward of our eternal soul.

Jesus’ message leads to eternal life (compare John 3:16–17)—anything else leads to standing in opposition to God, and ultimately to being on the wrong side of His judgment (Mark 8:38).” Being ashamed.
“There is no other way for you to follow the Lord except by carrying [our cross], for how can you follow him if you are not his?” – St. Augustine
We love more those who love us for ourselves rather than our gifts. So God is known to love those who love him more than the earthly gifts he gives. - Caesarius of Arles

It is not the gift of our eternal soul that we should love, but the one who loves us and gives us strength.

Do we love others enough to do everything we can in love for them so they can gain their eternal soul?

God came for us.
God suffered/suffers for us.
God died for us.

But, Jesus was was Resurrected for us to receive New Life.

To follow God, would we humble ourselves, putting others first? In every interaction?

If we do, we gain our eternal soul, follow our Christ our Savior into eternity.

Sharing the Good News through acts of love AND words of hope is the mission.

Doing this together, for each other, strengthened by the love of God is what truly changes the world.

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