And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. (Matthew 10:38)
The Blessedness of Self Denial
Our Lord referred to this tyranny of things when He said to His disciples, ’If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever shall lose his life for my sake shall find it.’
Breaking this truth into fragments for our better understanding, it would seem that there is within each of us an enemy which we tolerate at our peril. Jesus called it ’life’ and ’self,’ or as we would say, the self-life. Its chief characteristic is its possessiveness: the words ’gain’ and ’profit’ suggest this. To allow this enemy to live is in the end to lose everything. To repudiate it and give up all for Christ’s sake is to lose nothing at last, but to preserve everything unto life eternal. And possibly also a hint is given here as to the only effective way to destroy this foe: it is by the Cross: ’Let him take up his cross and follow me.’
This month Heart2Heart is posting excerpts from A. W. Tozer’s “The Pursuit of God” We hope this series will bless and encourage you in your own pursuit of a deeper relationship with our Lord.