The message of the Cross – If any man is willing.

At this year’s annual CTMI conference in Mauritius the vision was shared ever so clearly, we want the message of the cross to spread to every man and women in every nation.

The cross speaks of suffering, pain, affliction, a denial of self and ultimately death. It is not imposed on the Christian for Christ says, “If any man is willingMath 16:24 This simply implies that our desire to follow after Christ and grow in spiritual maturity is based on willingness to lose our lives, deny ourselves and surrender our will unto God. It would not be sound to believe that because Christ has accomplished ALL things on the cross that we as Christians don’t have to do anything at all but sit back, relax and be miraculously transformed everyday from glory to glory into the image of Christ. This would mean that without Christ finding in us a desire to detach our lives from the carnal things of this world,  He would rob us of our free will and impose Himself on us. But the hand of God is not forceful, therefore “If any man is willingMath 16:24 to accept the road set before him and the work of the cross in his/her life, then the grace of God would teach us to deny all ungodly things. As Paul says, ”And those who are Christ’s have put to death on the cross the flesh with its passions and its evil desires. “ Gal 5:24

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The message of the cross: The power of God!

CTMI has endeavored to preach the message of the cross, Christ and Him crucified, in, if possible, every nation. It is what Paul and the early apostles preached. The early church embraced it as, “the power of God” 1 Corn 1:18 and were ready to identify their lives to Christ, both in His sufferings and His death with the hope of resurrection life. As foolish as it may sound, the fundamental message of the church can only be centered on the cross. It is not just a topic in the bible that we consider once in a while, perhaps only on Easter day or when we wear our trendy necklace, but scripture clearly portrays that it is an everyday identification with Christ. Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.” Math 16vs 24

To the man on the streets that doesn’t know God, this message is one of repentance leading to salvation and to the Christian…. Gods work in us to bring us to maturity and the image of Christ. It is a life style submitted to the will of God through the denying of ourselves and loosing of our lives.

Until a man is crucified with Christ he will not and cannot taste of resurrection life and victory over sin in the flesh.

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We can be Gratefull!

“Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die.  But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Rom 5:7-8 If we just think back at the events and circumstances that took place leading to our salvation we could truly say that Gods hand has been upon us.

There is no greater joy than to know Christ and experience His love for us. A pastor who once stayed at my house on transit to a CTMI conference in Mauritius shared with me a way of seeing grace as God restraining His hand of wrath to extend His other to offer salvation. Paul goes on to say in Rom 5:9,”Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him!”

Not only have we been saved from the misery and disorder that sin brings in our short life on this earth but from the ultimate wage of sin – death. We have so much to be grateful for as Christians and can concur with what the bible says: “always giving thanks to God the Father for everything,” Eph 5:20

 

 

 

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Dont let your weakness hinder you!

The Lord desires that all His people would serve Him in the fullness of the call that He has placed on our lives. He has given us the grace that we might stand and serve Him with all our hearts so that He would accomplish the work of salvation He has started in us to bring us to perfection. We are precious to Him, a people He has redeemed with His own blood and set apart for His good pleasure.

We should never look at our weakness or shortcomings when we serve the Lord, these can so easily discourage us and make us feel inadequate. It is true we are all weak and we all have our lacks and struggles but if we always look at ourselves and not at what the Lord has done for us we will never serve Him because we will never be perfect. Discouragement is the enemy’s way of rendering us ineffective in our service to God.

Solomon exhorts us to consider the rock badger,“the rock badgers are feeble folk, yet they make their homes in the crags” Prov 30 vs 26 Although a weak animal prone to attack from its enemies in the wild, it is unable to defend itself so it makes its home in the rocks, a fortress where it is safe from any danger or harm or sudden attack. It is important that we always look at what the Lord had already accomplished for us on the cross and strengthen ourselves in this.

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