The Lordship of Christ – Walking as His Disciple
I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. (Galatians 2:20)
Love and Lordship in Focus
Christ died so you could be in a relationship with God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit and there is only one way that this relationship can work…with Christ as Lord!
Two simple things The Spirit brought to my mind from His Word and from Oswald Chambers regarding Christ being Lord of every part of my life:
1) I must die completely to myself (Galatians 2:20). Oswald Chambers called this going to my own “white funeral” (read the powerful, short devotional here (https://utmost.org/do-you-walk-in-white/) and in another place he calls it going to the funeral of my own independence…fully surrendering and dependent on God in Christ, which leads to the second simple Truth…
2) Christ must live fully in me. In others words He makes His home completely and fully in me, in my heart, mind, life and relationships, rooted and grounded in His Love (Ephesians 3:17-19; refer back to Galatians 2:20).
What does it look like for Christ to be Lord? John the Baptist’s final testimony to Christ gives us this key in John 3:30, “He must increase, but I must decrease.” As I was studying and praying about this several years ago, The Holy Spirit dropped this Truth in my mind, which aligns with all of Scripture and my choosing to submit to Christ as Lord, “In order for Me to increase in you, you must willingly choose to decrease. I will force neither.”
Before we transition to what it means to be Christ’s disciple and begin to move into His Love that compels us to make Him Lord and point others to Him, let’s recap Authority. Check out these Scriptures that clearly show Christ as The Author and therefore we can confidently and lovingly submit to Him as The Authority…as our Lord!
In Matthew 28:18, Jesus said, “All authority has been given to me.” By whom? The answer is: God the Father gave it to him. Keep reading…
Matthew 11:27 – “All things have been handed over to me by my Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.”
John 3:35 – “The Father loves the Son and has given all things into his hand.”
John 13:3, 5 – “Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he had come from God and was going back to God…began to wash the apostles’ feet.”
Ephesians 1:20-22 – “God raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. And He put all things in subjection under His feet, and made Him head over all things to the church,”
John 17:2 – “Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son that the Son may glorify you, for you granted him authority over all flesh, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him.”
Philippians 2:9-11 – “Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
He is a gracious and good God and we can fully trust Christ as Lord. I pray that you know Him not only as Savior but also as Lord. He will never force His Love or Lordship on you. He patiently waits for you to surrender to Him and it will absolutely change your life.
Discipleship: Our Response to His Lordship
We’ve focused over the past few weeks as we began 2021 on what it means and what it costs for us to seek and know Christ as Lord (Author and Authority). So what does it mean to live our lives as His disciple?
So much of our teaching and “discipleship” in today’s churches revolves much more around churchianity (attendance, giving, serving) with little responsibility and accountability for us to be sold-out disciples of Christ. Attendance, fellowship, giving and serving should be an overflow of who He is in our life and who we are in Him!
Two poignant, difficult passages on discipleship in Scripture for our culture and seemingly throughout time, human nature…go figure, taught by Jesus Himself are Matthew 7:21-24 and Luke 14:25-35. Remember our difficulties never compromise these Truths.
We have to move beyond, and help others move beyond, just being churchgoers or members to being fully devoted disciples of Jesus Christ!
Oswald Chambers gives great insight (https://utmost.org/classic/it-is-the-lord-classic/) to remind us it is Christ in us doing as He desires through us as we surrender to Him rather than what we claim to do for Him.
The reason we have so watered down and compromised on discipleship is because our nature is to make things as easy as we can for ourselves. Invite folks to church, hear a short message, give some money and occasionally sign up to serve…all good things but they are not disciples making disciples.
God’s Word and Jesus Himself proclaimed discipleship as a much deeper relationship and commitment requiring obedience and accountability…a dying to self as He lives through us. And that’s the rub in my flesh. I’d much rather just show up for a message, give a bit and serve a little and call myself His disciple but that does not line up with His Word.
Discipleship is our response to His Lordship. He has freely saved us to be in a relationship with Him…Father, Son and Holy Spirit…that we could enter into in no other way. And yet we’ve made it so easy to claim His salvation (Christ as Savior…and it is easy because He has done it all!) and enter into that relationship with little or no thought to the reality that the only way we can be in this relationship is with Him as Lord! Think about it…are you deceived in thinking you’re in a relationship with Christ and He’s not Lord?
If so, then who is lord, and what is Christ in your relationship? If He is King of kings and Lord of Lords…and He is; if He is the Creator and Author of our lives and all that exists…and He is…then who is He in your life and in that relationship.
We are all on different levels of maturity in Christ but none of that changes the fact that to be in a relationship with Him means our hearts must pursue and walk with Him as Lord. That’s what it means to be His disciple and in obedience, “Go and make disciples.” (Matthew 28:18-20)
In a world of false hopes wrapped up in hollow promises, temporary stuff and fleeting fads, we have the One Hope that never fails. Hope is not in worldly governments, education, media, science, economies, possessions, feelings or experiences. These will all come and go and leave us empty.
Hope is a Person…Jesus Christ. He promises, “I am with you always, even to the end of time” Matthew 28:20; “I will never leave you or forsake you” Hebrews 13:5; “I am the same yesterday, today and forever” Hebrews 13:8.
Next week we’ll look at what it means to be His disciple in Jesus’ own words.
Make it a great day in and for The Lord!
Love and Lordship…Food for Thought – He is Hope that we can count on no matter what we’re facing. That’s why He not only came to save you but to be your Lord. Choose Him as Lord in every part of your life by wholeheartedly seeking and following Him. His Hope is eternal and you can always count on Him. Don’t lose Hope because Hope (Jesus) never loses and never fails!
Love and Lordship…Action Item(s) –
- Read Romans 6:1-23 over the next few days or week.
- Ask The Holy Spirit to reveal to you what it means for Christ to be Lord of your life and how to live as His disciple.
- Ask Him to show you areas in your life where He’s not Lord.
- As He reveals things to you and you honestly recognize them, begin to specifically ask how to change your thinking, choices, actions and relationships to reflect His Lordship and your walk as His disciple.
Love and Lordship Prayer Focus Heavenly Father, thank You for making it possible to be in an incredibly, loving and intimate relationship with You that encourages, strengthens and fulfills my life. Forgive me when I live as though Christ was simply my Savior and not my Lord. In Jesus Name. Amen.