True biblical conversion to Christianity comes only through the giving up of your life to Jesus Christ, making Him Your Lord. Our discipleship should be characterized by the laying down of our life, just as our salvation is:
“Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it.” ~ Jesus The Christ @ Mark 8:34b & 35
Lordship Salvation creates Lordship Discipleship. Lordship Discipleship results from Lordship Salvation. Lordship Discipleship is the Biblical Model and mode for all Christians.
But were does the motivation come from? Should we change a lot? Should we see things differently than we did before Christ? How does our discipleship fit into God’s plan for us to be part of a church body? How do we figure out what our role is in the church body? What should the life of a ‘Lordship Disciple’ look like?
Today’s passage gives a clear & complete vision of what I call ‘Lordship Discipleship’. It answers all the questions I just asked.
1 Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.
- Brothers and Sisters who have received God’s mercy means: ‘Saved People’
- What might be considered a proper view of God’s mercy?
- We should be awed, amazed, remorseful, grateful, repentant & convicted!
- Understanding what God has done for us will compel us to to lay down our life
- ‘Being’ A living sacrifice is a continuous process
- A living sacrifice can crawl off the alter…but will always crawl back on.
- A Proper / Reasonable response to God’s mercy is surrender
- This is the only ‘True’ response, the only response that pleases God
Lordship Disciples respond to God’s mercy by laying down their life!
2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
- Conforming to the pattern of this world involves where you place your treasure
- What you conform to is what you value, it is what you put your trust in
- The pattern of this world is NOT the pattern of God’s ways!
- The pattern of this world is mostly dictated by Satan and human sin
- Prior to Christ entering our lives we’re all conformed to the pattern of this world
- You cannot be who God wants you to be and still value this world’s views
- You cannot be a True follower of Christ and not change how you think
- You must ‘Change Your Mind’ about a lot of things
- Our brain is capable of being renewed, the physiology exists (God designed)
- Lordship Discipleship is a process of mental & emotional transformation
- It is through that transformation that you begin to see things from God’s view
- Only through that transformation (Led by The HS) that you see God’s viewpoint
- You have to learn & know God’s will to recognize it in your life. (Counterfeit Money)
Lordship Disciples are changed by God’s Will & Word so they know His will!
3 For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you.
- God placed Paul in the position to bring this hard truth to us:
- Be honest with yourself, especially beware of overrating yourself
- Use realistic judgement (we need others for this)
- Be realistic about how you are, where God brought you from & where you are
- Don’t work from who you would like to be or hope to be, but from who you really are
- Knowing more about who God is helps us know who we are
Lordship Disciples are real with themselves & God!
4 For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5 so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.
- We are not all meant to play the same role, we are pieces of God’s puzzle
- The picture is only complete when every piece is in it’s proper place
- We can’t complete the picture unless all of us do our part / play our role
- In doing this we become interdependent, we all need each other
- Because we all belong to Christ, we all belong to each other
- Belonging to each other involves sacrifice (good thing we’re learning to do that)
Lordship Disciples live for the good of the Body of Christ, not their desires!
6 We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith; 7 if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; 8 if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.
- We have various talents, expressed at different levels, based on God’s work in us
- If you are meant to speak from God’s viewpoint, do it based on HIS work in you
- If you are gifted to serve, don’t try to be a prophet or a teacher (avoid seeking attention)
- If you can teach, do it! Don’t try to do something else
- If you are good at encouraging people become more intentional about it
- If you have means to give then you must realize that is a gift to be shared
- If called to lead take it really seriously, a lot is at stake (judged & rewarded)
- If you can show others mercy be happy you get to be the ‘hand of God’
Lordship Disciples are good stewards of the gifts Christ gives them!
9 Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10 Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. 11 Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13 Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.
- All of these things are expressions of conformity to God’s ways, not the world’s
- Sincere love is unconditional love. Sincere love doesn’t need reciprocation
- Tolerance of evil is NOT hating evil. It’s not wrong to hate what God hates
- You can’t cling to what is good and what is evil at the same time (One Master)
- Focusing on others takes God’s grace, the opposite of the pattern of this world
- Honoring others above yourself takes HS transformation / a renewed mind
- No place for apathy regarding God in the life of a Lordship Disciple
- A Lordship Disciple’s life is marked by joy, hope, patience, faithfulness & prayer
- A Lordship Disciple’s life is marked by sharing what you have with the Church
- At Lordship Disciple’s life is marked by a spirit of hosting & welcoming others
14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.
- True Disciples of Christ don’t play tit for tat…we don’t have to return fire
- Lordship Disciples are emotionally invested in the lives of others
- Lordship Disciples seek harmony in their interactions (not possible with evil)
- Lordship Disciples are humble and gracious to the marginalized
- Lordship Disciples are not full of themselves: They are full of God’s Spirit
Lordship Disciples live out the life that Christ has given them as their Lord!
The impact of receiving God’s mercy drives a desire to lay down our lives for Christ.
Christ’s Disciples live a transformed sacrificial life, rejecting this world, so we can truly know God.
Honest self assessment is crucial to learning and living our our role in the body.
In living our lives for Christ, our lifestyle will display God’s ways of doing things.
Do you agree that Lordship Salvation / Lordship Discipleship is the Biblical model?
How would you describe your need for God’s mercy and your response to it?
How do you think differently about things since surrendering your life to Christ?
How honest are you with yourself and with God? How can you be more honest?
How are you specifically using what Christ has given you to live under His Lordship?