Dying to Self

Dying to Self

John 15:12-13 – 12 “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. 

In the ultimate display and act of love, Jesus gave up His life for His friends. He has called His followers to follow His example and give up their lives, in love, for their friends. Loving each other in this way is the mark of a New Covenant believer. Loving God displays itself in how we love each other. It is a self-less and self-sacrificing love that continuously seeks to put the needs of others before our own needs. This shows itself in a variety of ways as we take up our crosses daily and follow Christ in this way.

The nature of our sinful flesh, when confronted with sacrificing our needs and desires for someone else, is to ask “what’s in it for me?” Our sinful nature will battle opportunities of selfless acts of love with the desire to put our own needs first…even if it is merely our need for recognition. This me-first attitude toward life flies in the face of how Christ describes His followers in John 15. It can be so hard to love as we are called to love because our flesh, the rest of the world, and Satan are telling us that it isn’t worth it. The risks aren’t worth the reward. They wouldn’t do the same thing for you. And so on and so on. In fact, we may rightly acknowledge that in of myself, I CANNOT love you as Christ has. Who will rescue us from this body of death?

Praise to God through our Lord Jesus Christ that He who is in us is greater than our flesh and greater than he who is in the world. The only way we can grow into this sacrificial love is through constantly abiding in Christ…. constantly communing with Him through prayer and His Word….and consistently fellowshipping with Him through His people. Let us be consistently mindful of Jesus every day; worshiping Him in all of life, not just on Sunday mornings. When you abide in Christ in this way, the love of Christ overwhelms you in ways that you and your sinful flesh least expect, enabling you to love others. Something to think about…

Are there areas of my life and in my relationships that I am living completely for myself and not loving the body of Christ like I am commanded to do?