Parkland First Baptist Church
May 23, 2021 CORRECT ONE
      • 1 Samuel 15–17ESV

      • 1 Samuel 18–20ESV

      • Psalm 11ESV

      • Psalm 59ESV

      • 1 Samuel 21–24ESV

      • Psalm 7ESV

      • Psalm 27ESV

      • Psalm 31ESV

      • Psalm 34ESV

      • Psalm 52ESV

      • Psalm 56ESV

      • Psalm 120ESV

      • Psalm 140–142ESV

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        November 29, 2020 - 10:00 AM - 10:00 AM
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        November 29, 2020 - 10:00 AM - 10:00 AM
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        April 14, 2021 - 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM
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  • Why and How to Deny Yourself

    I would like to focus the next several weeks on God’s Plea and Promise to His Church.
    So many churches coming out of the COVID crisis are anemic and spiritually sick.
    I believe God is heartbroken over this and wants us to Return to Him.
    Malachi 3:7 says, “Return to me, and I will return to you,”
    God’s Holy Spirit can take His Word and guide us to be healthy, powerful, and fruitful for Christ against which the gates of hell will not prevail.
    With inundation of false worldviews, great temptations, and spiritual warfare that we are in, it is easy to get weak or sick needing help.
    So we are going to look a biblical process where we will identify God’s design for us and how to obediently respond to what the Spirit is saying.
    My prayer is that as we seek the Lord with renewed vigor He will bring new life in return.
    At a previous church I pastored, we began a recovery ministry.
    One thing we did at each meeting was to recite the “Serenity Prayer”
    This is a prayer written by a great theologian, Reinhold Niebuhr
    His version goes like this:
    God, give us grace to accept with serenity the things that cannot be changed, Courage to change the things which should be changed, and the Wisdom to distinguish the one from the other.
    Living one day at a time, Enjoying one moment at a time, Accepting hardship as a pathway to peace, Taking, as Jesus did, This sinful world as it is, Not as I would have it, Trusting that You will make all things right, If I surrender to Your will, So that I may be reasonably happy in this life, And supremely happy with You forever in the next.

    Surrender to God’s Will

    Open you Bibles to Luke 9:23.
    Earlier in the chapter Peter confesses that Jesus is the Christ.
    Jesus explains what that means in terms of his betrayal, crucifixion, and resurrection.
    Then Jesus teaches the disciples that following him as their Christ has a requirement, a reason, and a reward.

    Discipleship Requires a Cross.

    Don’t let Twitter and Facebook define “following” Jesus for you.
    If following Jesus only meant clicking a button, then everybody would do it.
    “If anyone wants to follow after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow me” (v. 23).
    Jesus goes to a cross, so we who follow him must go to a cross too.
    He dies for us, and we die with him.
    The cross of suffering and death comes first in the Christian life.
    As Dietrich Bonhoeffer once put it, “When Christ bids a man to follow him, he bids that man to come and die” (Cost, 89).
    That’s the requirement.
    This cross is necessary.
    As the hymn writer puts it, “There is no other way than to trust and obey.”
    We can’t follow a crucified Savior without a cross of our own.
    Some people say, “Yes, Christ is up front carrying the cross and we are to follow.”
    But they think Christ is up front carrying his cross while we are in a parade behind him, riding floats and waving at the crowds like the queen.
    We are in a parade, but it’s a long parade of men and women, boys and girls, walking—not floating—each hunched over carrying the tool of their own death.
    This cross-carrying is necessary.

    This Cross-Carrying Is Humbling

    “Let him deny himself.”
    We can’t follow Jesus and at the same time come first.
    We have to deny ourselves: say no to our desires so we can say yes to Jesus.
    He is King; we are servants—slaves of Christ.
    This cross-carrying is daily.
    “Let him . . . take up his cross daily.”
    No vacation.
    No holidays.
    No sick days.
    No summer breaks.
    Every morning we wake, we must say, “Good morning, my cross.”
    Every morning we wake to die to self and the world so we can follow Jesus.

    What’s The Reason We Carry Our Cross?

    We are required to carry our cross because life lies on the other side of it (v. 24).
    The death in discipleship is the door to eternal life.
    Broad is the way that leads to destruction; narrow is the way that leads to life.
    Nothing in the world—not even the entire world itself—is worth our souls (v. 25).
    The world is a soulless and soul-destroying system, so we are required to abandon the world to save our souls.

    What Then Is The Reward For Accepting The Cross?

    In the Christian life, first comes the cross, then comes the crown.
    The reward is a crown, a kingdom.
    This kingdom is a share in God’s glory see verse 26.
    The kingdom of God is a kingdom of glory.
    Our blessed hope is the glorious appearing of our Savior from heaven.
    When that happens we will see his glory and be transformed into his glory (see 2 Cor 3:18).
    For all the self-denial and suffering of the cross in this life, those who follow Jesus will receive unending glory and joy in the life to come.
    Don’t be ashamed; look to his glorious coming.
    This is what makes it wise to die daily in order to live forever.
    This is why it makes sense to forsake the world in order to gain glory.
    For our encouragement and hope, Jesus allowed some to see that glory even before he or they died.
    That’s why in verse 28 Luke flashes forward eight days.
    He joins the transfiguration to the promise of verse 27 because the transfiguration is a foretaste of the glory that is to come.
    This glory, this kingdom, this crown is what Jesus provides for all those who take up their cross.

    What Does This Look Like?

    Galatians 2:20 says, “I have been crucified with Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”
    Then Galatians 5:24 says, “Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.”
    “But as for me, I will never boast about anything except the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ. The world has been crucified to me through the cross, and I to the world.” Galatians 6:14
    Jesus model how to live this way as found in Luke 22:29-43, “He went out and made His way as usual to the Mount of Olives, and the disciples followed Him. When He reached the place, He told them, “Pray that you may not enter into temptation.” Then He withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, knelt down, and began to pray,“Father, if You are willing, take this cup away from Me—nevertheless, not My will, but Yours, be done.”
    Here we find Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane prior to his arrest
    He is praying for the father to take away his impending death on the cross
    His separation from the father due to the sin of the world being laid upon him
    Yet, he says, “not My will, but Yours, be done.”
    He then went out and took his cross upon himself and died
    That’s how we take up our cross
    Daily, we have to tell God that we will do his will for our lives rather than our will
    Let me give you and example
    Dear Father,
    Thank you for this day. A new day to serve you and to bring you glory and praise. A day for me to live out my core values. Today, father, I take up my cross and follow you. That means
    1. I will be Devoted To You. That means I will seek to bring you praise, honor, and glory in all I do. I will do your will and not my will. I will seek to be your hands, feet, and mouth in the world around me. I will tune into you, to hear your voice, to spend time with you in your word and prayer. I will put you first before anything else.
    2. I will Adore My Family. That means I will love my wife as Christ loved the church. I will put her needs before my own. I will seek to train my children in your ways and not exasperate them. I will pray for my family, especially Jordan and for his salvation. I will seek to be the spiritual leader of my family.
    3. I will Witness to the World. I will seek to intentionally build relationships with people so that I might have a chance to share the gospel. I will seek to live out the gospel in my life. I will be aware of the divine appointments you bring my way and then with boldness and courage share the gospel.
    4. I will Serve Your Church. I will seek to encourage those you have given me oversight. I will build a close relationship with them to strengthen them, to assist them in becoming the pastor you want them to have. I will seek to be discerning to discover how each member can grow to become the strong healthy reproducing and disciple making believer you desire.
    Help me father to live out these values. Give me the strength and power to battle my enemy who will tempt me and cause me to stumble and not succeed today. By the power of the Holy Spirit, In the name of Jesus, I pray to you Father, Amen
    This is a prayer that I say daily
    It is built around my core values – those overarching principles that I try to live my life
    You need to develop your own, maybe Pastor Dave can help you
    Then tell God you will live according to His will for your life, whatever that may be.
    He will never ask you do anything you cannot handle with his help

    Your Turn

    Today, make a commitment to “take up your cross” daily
    Allow his will give you the serenity to live day by day
    Trust in his Holy Spirit as he gives you strength and power to overcome the temptations to do your own thing.
      • Luke 9:23–27CSB

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