Imagine a man proposing to his sweetheart . . . He says . . .
“Honey, I love you and I want us to be married.
I promise to take good care of you. I’ll provide for you.
You will have the best of everything.
I’ll be a good father to our children and I’ll give them the best education.
All I ask is that you will allow me just one day a month
to spend with another woman.”
Would a woman accept that offer?
Is that what she would expect of his commitment in marriage?
Or would she expect a complete commitment?
I think we would be very quick to criticise a man who made that sort of commitment – would we not? . . . but before we condemn the man, maybe we should look at ourselves.
The living God says to every blood-bought, adopted child of His,
“I love you so much that I gave My beloved Son for you,
to die in your place and to bear My wrath as punishment for your sin.
I have bought you so we can be to be together for all eternity.
I promise to take good care of you at all times.
I will provide your every need and undertake for you in every situation.
I will be your strength and will enable you to do great things.
I will never leave you. You will be totally safe and secure in My keeping.”
Jesus gave 100% commitment and He asks 100% commitment in return.
He said that to be His disciple, I must “take up my cross” and follow Him. Just exactly what He was saying would have been very clear to anyone who heard Him. Everyone knew that anyone who took up a cross was as good as dead. He was on the way to be crucified, with no possible outcome except death.
Jesus was clearly saying, as Paul also said later, that we are to count ourselves – our own desires, our own will – as DEAD. We are no longer our own, but we belong, completely, to God.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20
You are not your own. You have been bought with a price.
Therefore, glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.
Is our response to our God any less out-of-place than the man’s proposal to his girl? Do we tend to hold back a tiny space for ‘self’?
God does not want a 90% commitment or even a 99% commitment.
He wants – and is entitled to – a 100% commitment.
ANYTHING that takes GOD’S place is OUT of place
The Lord is King! I own His power,
His right to rule each day and hour.
I own His claim on heart and will
And His demands I will fulfill.
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God,
that you present your bodies a living sacrifice,
holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.
And do not be conformed to this world,
but be transformed by the renewing of your mind,
that you may prove
what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God.