One who has a new life is he who lives completely for God. Nothing in his life is drawn on for his own will. For him, living for God is not an obligation but a necessity. Living for God or the Kingdom of God is the lifestyle of Lord Jesus. Jesus showed us that kind of lifestyle as in His statement “My food is to do the will of the One who sent me and to complete His work.1 In other translation, it is translated “My sustenance is to do His will”. In other statement, Paul said: “And to be like Him in His death”.2 The phrase “being made comfortable unto His death” means to die just like Lord Jesus died. What kind of death did Lord Jesus have? It was the crucifixion. He suffered not because of His fault, not because of defending His ambition, but it was for our interests.
In the Bible we find some facts about this death. Paul said: “For the love of Christ controls us, since we have concluded this that Christ died for all therefore all have died.” 3 Please pay attention to the sentence “therefore all have died”. In King James Version, it is translated as “… then we’re all dead.” In other version, it is translated as “… which means that they all share in His death.” In this case, we find out that one who has not lived in God is one who has not yet died. They are useless. They are not counted by God. That was what meant by Lord Jesus “Let the dead bury their own dead, but as for you, go and proclaim the Kingdom of God.”4
Not a few Christians seal their hearts towards God’s interest. They live in egoism that saddens God. Ironically, many people do not realize their egoism. We do not want to understand the truth depicted in 2 Corinthians 5:14-15 and Philippians 1:21. Living for Christ means to live for advocating the message of the Lord’s cross, living for the broadening of God’s Kingdom to salvage the unsaved souls to be recovered by God Himself.
In this case, we understand why Jesus Christ said: “For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.” 5 Saving life here means concerning merely about one’s own interest but not God’s. People like these will become poor and have nothing in eternity, they will lose their lives.
In Colossians 3:4, the Bible said: “For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God.” Many Christians do not desire to lose the natures of their old selves. They still want to maintain normal lives just like others and enjoy all pleasures. This unwillingness is a disadvantage for one self. Because of that, it is important when Lord Jesus said: “If anyone wants to become My follower, he must deny himself, take up his cross and follow Me.” 6 It is good if we also remember what Paul who by the inspiration of the Spirit suggested: “Keep seeking the things above, not things on earth”, whereas that verse is similar to Lord Jesus’ statement: “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” The church should teach the congregation to be spiritual by locking them in this truth. Sermons about physical blessing will make the congregation unaware of His calling. Our willingness to collect treasure in heaven is our way to live our life as populace of the Kingdom of God. It is until we realize deeply that our home is in the new heaven and earth. This world is our temporary dwelling only as we all have died in Christ. Up to this level, the devil’s enticement cannot manipulate us anymore.7
1) John 4:34 ; 2) Philippians 3:10 ; 3) 2Chorinthians 5:14 ; 4) Luke 9:59-60 ; 5) Matthew 16:25; Mark 8:35; Luke 9:24 ; 6)Matthew 16:24-25 ; 7) Luke 4:5-8