Take up his cross...

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Rubato 1, Apr 11, 2008.

  1. Rubato 1

    Rubato 1
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    From the thread by nunatak:

    I have always wondered what this phrase means. What did it mean to the disciples (who were told this before Christ took up his)?

    I've taken the part about 'follow me' to mean disciple, etc., but what about carrying a cross w/you? What exactly does that mean to us?
     
  2. nunatak

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    I think that part of what Jesus was saying had to do with the COST of following him.
     
  3. webdog

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    I believe the phrase was intended for the 12, however the implications behind the phrase are for all (that we should be willing to even die for Christ). If you notice, all but one apostle died a gruesome death, and John spent much of his life in less that desirable conditions.

    The problem I have with it's use today, is this phrase is casually thrown around in churches today by believers who speak 'christianese' to mean having a bad day at work, a sore back, relational problems, etc.
     
  4. Havensdad

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    Actually, if you read the accounts, you will notice this is not just something he told his disciples: he told it to the unbelieving crowds. This was message of Salvation.

    I agree it is thrown around to much.
     
  5. webdog

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    It was not a salvational message. An unbeliever doesn't know what it means to follow Christ and giving up their lives to do so.
     
    #5 webdog, Apr 11, 2008
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  6. Havensdad

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    Yes it was. Are you saying Christ was wrong to preach this to the masses? You can use the same logic with faith..

    "An unbeliever doesn't know what it is to have faith in Christ".

    Since salvation is a supernatural work of God, we don't have to worry about such things.

    BTW, Paul condemns VERY strongly, those who would try to make our sanctification some type of separate "choice". It is ALL a work of the Spirit, beginning to end.
     
  7. webdog

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    Not at all. Those who had genuine faith in Christ would have understood this message.
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but you are a calvinist, right? It is common knowledge in your theological system that man is "dead". Dead means dead, right? How can a dead person know anything, particularly what it takes to follow Christ?

    Salvation is a supernatural act...faith leading up to that is not. Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.
    The problem you now have is God wanting some believers to be more like Christ than others, which goes against His very nature of wanting us ALL to be conformed to the image of His Son.
     
  8. Havensdad

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    Anyone would have understood this. Jesus tells EVERYONE "deny yourself and follow me". If this is not a salvation message, since he was preaching to the crowds, he was leading MANY people knowingly astray.

    Dead man also can't have faith. When you respond to Christ's call to "follow him", that IS faith!

    Faith is a supernatural gift of God. It is called a gift (in other places: not just Ephesians) it is demonstrated over ad over. You don't believe it, because you simply don't like it.

    Since the Bible says God had appointed our every step, I do not have that problem. God brings about sanctification in each one of us, at exactly the speed he wishes, in each individual case.

    Rev 3:19 Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline, so be zealous and repent.

    Heb 12:7 It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline?

    Heb 12:8 If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons.

    Heb 10:14 For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified.


    There are many many more. Notice, if we can act how we wish, without discipline, and straightening by our father, then we are not sons.

    Also, this last one is nice. Notice the way it speaks> we are being sanctified. This is active> it is something being done to us...
     
  9. webdog

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    That's strange, because prior to getting saved I would have no idea what this meant. It's a sanctification message, not a justification message.
    From the above, you believe all of the crowds who followed Jesus around were believers? I used the dead analogy as an example. Dead doesn't mean corspe. It means separation. A spiritually dead person can, and does have faith. It is the object of that faith that saves, not faith itself.
    I don't like it because it's not scriptural. Even those who hold your view agree that "that" in Eph. 2:8-9 is referring back to " bygrace you are saved through faith"...the whole phrase, salvation. The greek doesn't allow for faith to be the gift spoken of. All men have the ability to have faith. Mankind perishes because they put their faith in themselves, that they don't need God. If the lost don't have faith, the lost are merely cyborgs.
    Determinist, eh? Has God appointed the steps of the rapist and child molester, too? God is the cause?
     
  10. Havensdad

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    Actually, that passage only refers to God's children>

    However, since the Bible DOES say that (God appoints our steps), the opposite view, that is that all people are "equal" (that is, a denial of the Biblical doctrine of election), would have God appointing rapists and child molesters.
     
  11. webdog

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    Now we are back to if it is only pertaining to God's children, and they sin, He has appointed that to happen? You're digging yourself into a deeper pit...
     
  12. FERRON BRIMSTONE

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    Luke 14:25 Now great multitudes went with Him. And He turned and said to them, 26 "If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple. 27 And whoever does not bear his cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple. 28 For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost, whether he has enough to finish it-- 29 lest, after he has laid the foundation, and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, 30 saying, 'This man began to build and was not able to finish.' 31 Or what king, going to make war against another king, does not sit down first and consider whether he is able with ten thousand to meet him who comes against him with twenty thousand? 32 Or else, while the other is still a great way off, he sends a delegation and asks conditions of peace. 33 So likewise, whoever of you does not forsake all that he has cannot be My disciple. 34 "Salt is good; but if the salt has lost its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? 35 It is neither fit for the land nor for the dunghill, but men throw it out. He who has ears to hear, let him hear!"
     
  13. John of Japan

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    It means being willing to suffer and die for the cause of Jesus Christ. The religion of the Roman Empire at the time was emperor worship. Anything else was called atheos, "without a god" (the etymology of the word "atheist"). The penalty for this crime could be and was often death (though Jews were excused to preserve the culture, as was the practice of the Roman empire). And of course the Roman death penalty was execution by the cross, a long and excruciating death.

    Here is what A. T. Robertson wrote in his comments on Matt. 10:38--"Criminals were crucified in Jerusalem. It was the custom for the condemned person to carry his own cross as Jesus did till Simon of Cyrene was impressed for that purpose. The Jews had become familiar with crucifixion since the days of Antiochus Epiphanes and one of the Maccabean rulers (Alexander Jannaeus) had crucified 800 Pharisees."

    So, BB members, have you ever knelt and told Jesus Christ you would be willing to be tortured and killed for His cause? If not, then you have not yet taken up your cross.
     
    #13 John of Japan, Apr 12, 2008
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  14. John of Japan

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    Please look more carefully at the six times Jesus said this. In three of them (Matt. 16:24, 10:38 & Luke 9:23) He was speaking exclusively to the disciples, according to the context. Thus it is certainly not a salvation message.

    In fact, in Matt. 10:38 it is even more obviously not for salvation, since this passage is in Christ's message to the twelve before they went out on a preaching trip.
     
    #14 John of Japan, Apr 12, 2008
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  15. Havensdad

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    John,

    But he also told it to the masses. It is both a message of obedience (to the believers) and a message of salvation (to the unbelievers). Anyone unsaved, who would have heard this message, could respond to it in faith, and thereby be saved.

    Jesus would not have preached a non salvific message to the crowds. This would lead many astray.

    Also> there is nothing in scripture that separates being saved, or being a disciple. When you are saved, you become a disciple. If you are not a disciple, you were never saved. Sanctification starts at the moment of our Justification. When we are a Child of God, we are "being perfected". Please note that everyone called "false brethren", or "false believers" etc. in scripture, are done so because of actions they perform which show them not to to be a disciple.
     
  16. John of Japan

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    If you'll look more closely I believe you'll find that He preached it to the disciples and sometimes the crowd (oxlos in the Gr.) happened to be there. The crowd might or might not have been believers, we can't tell by the text. It is putting something into the text that is not there to say the crowd must have been unbelievers.
    Actually, I've done extensive study on this very issue, and I urge you to study the issure more carefully. Christ used the word differently from the book of Acts, maybe due to His Aramaic. He often put conditions or distinctives on the term disciple which were not there in the book of Acts: abiding in the Word, loving the brethren, committment, etc. (I have a message in which I preach four signs of discipleship, four distinctions He made for the term "disciple.") On the other hand, Luke (with his pure Greek as opposed to translated Greek) used the term in Acts to simply mean "believer," such as the disciples first being called Christians at Antioch.

    Note also that the Pauline equivalent of "take up your cross" is "Offer your body as a living sacrifice," which was specifically said to brothers, not the lost.

    I have to hit the sack here in Japan. Oyasumi nasai. (Sleep well.) :sleeping_2:
     
  17. Havensdad

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    Actually, if you look closer, you will see that he specifically calls to everyone with this message, and this is also, specifically in context, a message of salvation, and a warning to the "throng".
    Mar 8:34 And calling the crowd to him with his disciples, he said to them, "If anyone( he said anyone> not just believers) would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.

    Mar 8:35 For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel's will save it.
    Mar 8:36 For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul?

    The point of one taking up his cross, and following Christ, is that they woulld save their life, and not forfeit their soul. Very much a salvific message.

    I have studied this subject more than any other. It is very clear in scripture one cannot be "saved", and yet not be a disciple. I have already shown how Christ used a message of discipleship as a salvific message. We also see in the epistles, that when one turns away from their faith, abandons the cause, etc., they were never saved (called "false brethren", "to show they were not one of us" etc.).

    In Jude, those Christians who "pervert the Grace of God", by teaching someone can be saved yet living, as the NLT puts it "immoral lives" are condemned to Hell...
     
  18. LeBuick

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    :applause: :applause: :applause:

    By not understanding the culture and times I think many of us never "get" the book of Romans or much of Paul's writings. Paul stressed the fact that Christianity was not just a "sect" of Judiasm. This would have been the easy road to acceptance but none the less a lie.

    I think many of us who have only lived in this land with freedom of religion don't truly understand the implications and risk it takes to be a Christian in a non-Christian land. Taking up one's cross is a great sacrifice and a symbol of absolute commitment to Christ and his cause. Even if martyrdom is the price we have to pay.
     
  19. LeBuick

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    I have always taught/preached this as a threefold COST of discipleship not to be confused with how t become a disciple.

    First he says, "deny oneself"--- This means a willingness to give up worldly materials and self gratification in order focus and surrender one's self to the purpose and Will of God. A man can't serve two masters, this includes one's self. We are encouraged to not be self-center but to be God-centered (kind of gives prosperity preaching a black eye).

    Secondly (and separately) he says, "take up His cross" or more appropriately "Take up THE cross". This deals with the extent to which you will deny self. Unto death as the cross in their time was a symbol of death. This means followers must be committed to be obedient to God's Word no matter what the consequences are for the sake of the gospel. This is really extreme religion in Jesus time because it meant facing social and political oppression and ostracism. There was no middle ground and certainly no turning back. Taking up the cross was expressing your willingness to die.

    The last being, "and follow me".

    I see this more as the COST of being saved vs How one is saved.
     
  20. Palatka51

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    This generation will know the meaning of "Take up thy cross and follow me" very soon. It will come upon us just as quick as the Berlin wall came down.
     

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