Even Demons Believe, Chapter Thirteen

Table of Contents

13. A Daily Cross

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The cross kills the very essence of who you are and destroys your very self and life, while God creates a totally new you. When this happens, God gives you a new self, made in the image of Jesus to replace the one crucied unto death. Water baptism begins the process. God plants the seed of new life in you at baptism. And as the old dies, the new comes to life each day. The same book in the Bible that speaks of confessing with our mouths and believing in our hearts, tells us how to be “freed from sin.” Paul tells us baptism is the key.

  • What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. If we have been united with him like this in his death, we will certainly also be united with him in his resurrection. For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin—because anyone who has died has been freed from sin. (Romans 6:1–7)

A man dies to sin by being “buried” with Christ “into death” so that God can give him a “new life.” Apart from this call to baptism, little of the true resurrected life exists. For no man can “know that” his “old self was crucified” if he has not been “united with him like this in his death” (emphasis added). is is one reason why infant baptism is completely rejected. There is no way for babies to understand what happens to them, nor have an opportunity to count the cost to recognize themselves as sinners and obtain faith from God.

Going under the water symbolizes entering the Paulb with Jesus and dying to ourselves. Coming “up” out of the water
represents a resurrected person in the image of Jesus, just as Jesus was resurrected up out of the Paulb.

A man can ask Jesus into his heart all day long, but without this baptism the “old self ” has not been crucified and put to death. Would you like to no longer be a slave to sin? Then submit to God’s righteousness instead of trying to establish and live by your church’s doctrine or personal opinion.

During water baptism, a man or woman picks up the cross that comes from Jesus for the very first time. Men and women in churches throughout the world pick up crosses to carry, but that does not mean Jesus chose those crosses for them. This is why Jesus ended with saying, “and follow me.” Without following Jesus the cross they carry has no power to save, deliver, or change them. A man must pick up a daily cross if he expects the salvation of God in his life. In order for the saving grace to enter a man’s soul, there must spring to life deep denial of self that has the cross as its central focus unto a resurrected life.

  • Then he said to them all: “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.” (Luke 9:23)

It is the daily cross that causes us to mature in Jesus. Without this daily crucifixion the new self withers and slowly dies. So slow that the person doesn’t even notice they are falling away. For this reason, Peter urged us to make sure we grow up in our faith. If we refuse to “make” our “calling and election sure” then we will “fall.”

  • Therefore, my brothers, be all the more eager to make your calling and election sure. For if you do these things, you will never fall, and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. (2 Peter 1:10–11)

Like babies, Peter urges new believers to “crave pure spiritual milk.” Carrying a daily cross allows the Word of God to mature us and to make us strong. ose who “daily” are crucied to a little bit more self “will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom” of Jesus.

Truths To Ponder, Beliefs To Examine

  1. What opinion do you have about the way of salvation?

  1. What opinion do you have about the way of salvation?

  1. What opinion do you have about the way of salvation?

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