Thursday, April 1, 2010

As I was reading Mark 8 in the Bible to Jake
this week, it hit me that these were good verses
for this week as we prepare to celebrate Good
Friday (the day Jesus was crucified) and Easter
(the day we celebrate Jesus rising from the dead).

These are the words Jesus spoke to his disciples
and the crowd:
vs. 34-38: "If anyone would come after me,he must
deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.
For whoever wants to save his life will lose it,
but whoever loses his life for me and for the gospel
will save it. What good is it for a man to gain the
whole world, yet forfeit his soul? Or what can a
man give in exchange for his soul? If anyone is
ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and
sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed
of him when he comes in his Father's glory with the
holy angels."

Jesus had just finished talking to his disciples
about how he would suffer and be killed and be
raised again (what we are celebrating this weekend)
and Peter pulled him aside and "began to rebuke"
Jesus the Bible says. Really- can you imagine
rebuking Jesus? And then Jesus says, "Get behind
me Satan!. You do not have in mind the things of
God but the things of men."

Those are powerful words!!! And so are the words
about losing your life and saving your soul. God
wants us to realize that we need to give Him our
lives by surrendering to Him. If we don't do that,
the Bible says we will pay for our own sins and
will have eternal condemnation. People try to
sugar coat the gospel at times, and although LOVE
is at the very heart of the message Jesus brought,
there is also the reality of the harsh consequences
of those who do not trust in Him as Lord. Jesus
himself said that if we are ashamed of Him and his
words, then He will be ashamed of us at His coming. If
that's not a reminder to be bold about God's Word
and Truth, I don't know what is! Who cares if you
gain the whole world but lose your soul? People
may not care now, but for eternity they will regret
their decision. Jesus wants us all to come to Him.
He loves us, He died for every one of us and He gives
us the right to be called His friends! Share the good
news this Easter: Jesus is RISEN!

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