Posted by: pastormikemcdowell | August 11, 2015

August 11, 2015 “The Jesus Principle”

“Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it”. (Matthew 10: 38-39)

 

Good Morning Everyone! God has blessed us with a new day, so let’s rejoice and be glad in it!

Some years ago, a man by the name of Laurence J. Peter developed a business theory that became the basis for a best-selling book called “The Peter Principle.” Peter hypothesized that in the business world, employees were promoted based on their past success until eventually they would be promoted to their particular level of incompetence, assuring that they would eventually reach a level where their failure was a virtual certainty. While making for an intriguing business management model, the motivation of the employee to advance is almost always based on material gain and prestige more than loyalty to the company. With such an attitude on the part of the employee, it is not surprising that Peter’s hypothesis would often be affirmed.

Let’s apply this hypothesis to what I am calling “The Jesus Principle.” Assuming that the “employee”, that is, the follower of Christ, is motivated for the same reasons…comfort, wealth, worldly prosperity, or perhaps even good health, over and above complete loyalty, devotion, and obedience to Christ, the same dynamic can be expected. There will come a time when these things fail to satisfy, and the follower become discouraged or no longer motivated to obediently lead where Jesus would have them follow. Here in Matthew’s gospel, Jesus sums this conclusion up by declaring, “Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me”. Obedience to Christ should not be based on worldly blessings. These things may come, but they are not the reason one should become a follower of Christ. Christian author and Pastor David Platt writes, 

“Radical obedience to Christ is not easy… It’s not comfort, not health, not wealth, and not prosperity in this world. Radical obedience to Christ risks losing all these things. But in the end, such risk finds its reward in Christ. And he is more than enough for us.”

Understanding that the reward for radical obedience to Christ is the promise of an eternity in His divine presence is far more than our obedience deserves, and a greater reward than the world could ever hope to offer. I believe when Jesus said Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it”, he was saying that discovering our life’s purpose…”finding our life” in him, will lead to self-sacrifice…”losing our life” in his service, and in doing so, we will, discover the very reason for our being …Christ becoming our all-in-all. That’s the Jesus Principle. It’s not easy. It’s other-worldly, and it’s risky. “But in the end”, as David Platt writes, “such risk finds its reward in Christ, and He is more than enough for us.” Let’s pray!

O Holy Jesus; You are life’s greatest reward and the desire of my heart. May I not be dazzled by the allures of this world, but serve you with complete and utter devotion each day of my life, that I may spend eternity in your divine presence. This I do humbly pray in this new day. Amen!

 

 

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