WE OUGHT TO LAY DOWN OUR LIVES FOR OTHERS

There is something in the experience of being a part of the family of God – so wonderful that you can’t feel at home in this world anymore. Do you feel strange when you watch the television, and see what’s going on in the world and somehow feel strangely that you’re not a part of it? Do you listen to the issues that swirl on our social agenda as a nation and somehow feel estranged by it’s “dog eat dog” mentality? I guess it happens slowly over a period of time in our Christian experience that’s why it surprises us so much. I cannot help but be transported back in time in the days of my youth when all i cared is about me, mine, and myself. And everything i did had an internal focus and purpose geared toward what i want. My life is so different than that now. There has been a radical change. There’s been an absolute reversal of worldviews. I do not see the world any longer through my own eyes. I see the world through the eyes of a crucified Savior, and He has changed everything. Everything is different! Different!

I must admit i can still feel the tremendous pull of the world that says, “you will enjoy this, this is fun”. But my mind in Christ says, i have been called to be different. I don’t care what others are doing. I don’t care what society says is right or wrong. I have been called to Christlikeness so that i could bring a lost world to God. I am not my own. I’ve been bought with a price, i ought to glorify God in my body (cf. 1 Cor. 6:20). 1 Peter 2:21-25 shows us the Chief Shepherd of the sheep, the pre-existent God Incarnate giving us an example of how to live in this fallen world. And how did He live while He was a stranger and alien and pilgrim in this world? What did He do with self and temptation? How did Jesus fight the good fight? “Since Christ also suffered for you leaving you an example for you to follow in his steps who committed no sin nor was any deceit found in His mouth and while being reviled He did not revile in return while suffering He uttered no threats but keeping but kept entrusting himself to Him who judges righteously and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. For by His wounds you were healed for you were continually straying like sheep. But now you have returned to the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls”. So the Life of Christ is laid out to us alive for He did not please himself but laid down His life for others. Now we are called to walk in His steps. There’s no way that we’re going to be crucified. There’s no way that we’re probably going to be asked to die for our faith; that might occur, but it probably won’t. There’s no way that we can live without sin. He did. I’m not sure we can, but I tell you this – as He laid down His life for others. We’re called on in this context to lay down our lives for others (cf. 1 John 3:16).