“But if we walk in the light as He Himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin” (1 John 1:7, HCSB).
There’s a saying we use quite often in religious circles to describe one’s spiritual transformation. We say “I’ve seen the light.”
In this verse the Apostle John clarifies that being a disciple of Jesus is not just a matter of seeing the light but rather walking in the light.
“If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:31-32, ESV).
The phrase from these verses, “the truth will set you free,” is frequently quoted out of context. It should be understood in connection with the previous phrase, “if you abide in my word.” To be set free, you must abide in Christ’s word!
“But you, man of God, run from these things, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance, and gentleness. Fight the good fight for the faith; take hold of eternal life that you were called to and have made a good confession about in the presence of many witnesses” (1 Timothy 6:11-12, HCSB).
In Part 1 of this meditation Paul instructed Timothy to use this present life as an opportunity to prepare for eternity with God by becoming more like God. To accomplish this, Paul told Timothy to train himself in godliness through disciplined, rigorous practice in personal devotion and service to God.
Now Paul tells Timothy that he should fight for the faith and take hold of eternal life!
“Train yourself in godliness for the training of the body has a limited benefit, but godliness is beneficial in every way, since it holds promise for the present life and for the life to come” (1 Timothy 4:7-8, HCSB).
In this verse the Apostle Paul is explaining to his protege, Timothy, that we live our present life in preparation for eternity. Paul says that we should live our lives in anticipation of eternal life!
“But whenever someone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. For the Lord is the Spirit, and wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image” (2 Corinthians 3:16-18, NLT).
These verses make reference to the practice of Moses to wear a veil to hide God’s glory that was reflected on his facial features after being in God’s presence. Moses wore the veil because he didn’t want his fellow Israelites to see the glory of God fading from his face (see Exodus 34:33-35).
“Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win! All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should” (I Corinthians 9:24-27, NLT).
In these verses the Apostle Paul explains that one’s salvation is not a single occurrence, a bi-monthly activity, or even a semi-annual event. It is a way of life that requires daily discipline and training.
“There was a good and righteous man named Joseph, a member of the Sanhedrin, who had not agreed with their plan and action. He was from Arimathea, a Judean town, and was looking forward to the kingdom of God. He approached Pilate and asked for Jesus’ body” (Luke 23:50-52, HCSB).
Joseph of Arimathea was apparently a member of the Sanhedrin and a man of wealth. He was a good and righteous man so he had disagreed with the injustice of the Sanhedrin’s decision to execute Jesus.
“Now listen! Today I am giving you a choice between life and death, between prosperity and disaster.” (Deuteronomy 30:15, NLT).
We begin each day by making a choice between walking in the way of life or walking in they way of death. It’s a life or death choice!
No, I’m not saying that you have to get saved everyday, but, in a way I am.
“When he sits on the throne as king, he must copy for himself this body of instruction on a scroll in the presence of the Levitical priests. He must always keep that copy with him and read it daily as long as he lives” (Deuteronomy 17:18-19, NLT).
Included in the book of Deuteronomy are guidelines that future kings of Israel are admonished to follow.
Becoming a disciple of Jesus must be intentional and strategic. To be a disciple of Jesus, you must be a deliberate disciple.
To be a deliberate disciple you must develop a plan or strategy for spiritual formation and service to God’s Kingdom.
Deliberate discipleship requires a totality of purpose that comes through an abandonment of all other priorities in favor of the Kingdom of God. Thus, the primary characteristic of deliberate discipleship is radical obedience to the teachings of Jesus.