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Posts Tagged ‘THE REWARD OF hIS SUFFERING’

LOVE ROMANCES # 4 PM pay_the_price

Do you love me?

When your significant other asks you the question, “Do you really love me?” We cringe and think – “Yes, well of course I do, but where is this leading?”  “What do you want?” “Well…” They answer sheepishly, “You know that diamond ring I’ve been looking at in the Michael Hill jewellers store lately? Well, it’s on sale at half price!”

Now we pit the depth of love for the little lady against the depth of love we have for the three thousand dollars we have saved up; and all the different things that money could do instead of buying a diamond ring. Life is full of choices like that.

“Do you love me?” Your mother says to you. “Then you’ll be home by 11 o’clock tonight.”

“Do you love me?” Your husband says to you. “Then you’ll let me go on this fishing trip with the boys to wolf creek.”

“Do you love me?” Your work colleague says to you in the corridor at work? “Then cover for me doing this extra shift, so I can go to a wedding interstate.”

“Do you love me?” Your old school friend says to you. “Then you’ll let me stash this stolen property in your garage for a couple of days while I find a place to stay then I’ll move it back.”

There’s the love commitment; and there’s always the cost.

Jesus said to Peter the disciple, “Do you love me?”

What a question! Loaded with so many expectations. When Jesus asks do you love Him, that’s totally different to anyone else in this world asking, do you love me? What’s more difficult is that Peter had just let Jesus down big time. Like, really let him down! Like betrayal at the big moment in Jesus’ life when He really needed support.

No pressure Peter, but “do you love me?”

There’s a cost, there’s always a cost. Peter was waiting for the cost. What would it be?

  • Confess my sin to all the disciples?
  • Give away all my money and possessions like Jesus asked of the rich young ruler?
  • Go back and tell the Roman guards that, Yes. I was the one who was with Jesus.

No; the cost was just this, Feed my sheep. – is that it? Is that all? Is that your best shot?

That is a statement of purpose. Jesus is always on purpose. Not a “make-you-feel-good” purpose, a kingdom purpose.

So I’ll ask you this same question tonight. Do you love Jesus?

Yes there is a cost. Will you baulk at it? Will you say yes now, and walk away later? Will you genuinely and sincerely mean yes now, but just never pay the price and have endless excuses as to why it was too hard for you?

Do you love me Peter, was followed by the next two times Jesus asked the same question. Peter was wondering why that was necessary. Didn’t Jesus believe him the first time? As usual Jesus had a reason for asking the same thing three times, and whether it was because Peter denied Him three times or not; it worked! Peter was restored and not just one of the boys but the lead preacher and top disciple in Jesus band of unlikely world changers.

You see Jesus prepared Peter for the kind of cost that he would later be asked to when He goes on to say, John 21:18 “I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, when you were young you girded yourself [put on your own belt or girdle] and you walked about wherever you pleased to go. But when you grow old you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will put a girdle around you and carry you where you do not wish to go.” There was going to be a cost for Peter to pay, and it was more than any of us will ever pay.

Are you ready for the question? Do you love Jesus? Sure there’s a price to pay when you answer that Question. So, will you answer it?

Paul talks about the price of that question when he says, Phil 3:7-8 But whatever former things I had, that might have been gains to me, I have come to consider as [[a]one combined] loss for Christ’s sake.

Yes, furthermore, I count everything as loss compared to the possession of the priceless privilege (the overwhelming preciousness, the surpassing worth, and supreme advantage) of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord and of progressively becoming more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him [of perceiving and recognizing and understanding Him more fully and clearly]. For His sake I have lost everything and consider it all to be mere rubbish (refuse, dregs), in order that I may win (gain) Christ (the Anointed One),

This is why we read the bible…. This kind of statement is loaded with so much truth and value as to what it means to follow Jesus. Do you love Him? It will cost you everything.

Teeny price I have paid, left well paid career, abused for following Christ, punched twice, endured hardship. What price will you pay to follow Jesus?

Jesus is asking you, “Do you love me?” The answer is in your heart. And if you want to know whether you do already love Him here’s the test….

John 14:15 If you [really] love Me, you will keep (obey) My commands. (AMP)

The story of Brother Yun in China shows pretty much the ultimate price a man could pay to follow Jesus. (Read the book) If you love Jesus in Australia today there may come some ridicule or maybe even some workplace bullying or persecution, but we get it pretty easy. Still there is a price to pay and that’s “Not my will but yours be done” – It’s all the things you want to do in your life but it isn’t what Jesus wants for you.

Sometimes obeying Jesus commands is dead easy, other times it takes every bit of courage and strength you’ve got. So what’ll it be? Do you love Him or not?

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