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"Not Worthy of Me"

It is hard to think that any of us could ever be considered worthy of the Lord.  None of us can earn salvation or merit the Lord’s sacrifice.  His coming and dying were wholly by the grace of God.

 

What does make us worthy is that God loved us enough to consider us worth the sacrifice.  We all know the verse, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)

 

Yet we can be decidedly unworthy of Christ in spite of God’s love for us.  The Lord declared a number of choices that would make one unworthy of Him.  All of these choices have to do with setting our priorities and choosing where to place our loyalty.

 

“He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me; and he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me.” (Matt. 10:37)  As God has loved us to such an extent that He gave His only begotten Son, He now expects us to love Him to such an extent that we will part ways with our family members if necessary.  This requirement is not a matter of emotions but of actions.  It shows that our loyalty to Christ must be stronger than our loyalty to our families.  For many, this is not just a hypothetical situation to make one think, but rather it becomes a real choice that has to be made.

 

“He who does not take his cross and follow Me is not worthy of Me.” (Matt. 10:38)  In another place, Jesus said, “If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.” (Matt. 16:24)  Now we learn that not only must we choose the Lord over all others, but we also must choose the Lord over self.  In many ways, this is a much more difficult choice than choosing Christ over family. Self-denial is to place the interests of others, especially Christ’s, above one’s own.  The cross that we must bear is whatever burdens we must carry to follow the Lord faithfully.  Many of us would like to follow the Lord without carrying our crosses, but to do so would make us unworthy of Him because He bore so much Himself on our behalf.

 

“No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is worthy of the kingdom of God.” (Luke 9:62)  If one should begin the course of following the Lord and then turns back to the ways of the world or even harbors a desire to go back, Christ says that one is unworthy of His kingdom.  This affects those Christians who for one reason or another begin to long for the “good old days” when they did not carry their crosses.  It may be a Christian who experiences difficulties because of his faith.  It may be a Christian who is tempted by the world.  It may be a reluctant Christian who is doing just enough to sooth his conscience.  Any so-called Christian who is not fully dedicated to Christ has proved himself unworthy of the Lord and His kingdom.

 

Claiming Christ as your Lord is no small commitment.  While God freely gave Christ as our Savior, much is required for us to be proven worthy.  It is a lifetime pursuit.  In the end, how wonderful it will be to hear our Lord say, “You are worthy of Me.”  Certainly He is worthy of all that we have to give.  “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!” (Rev. 5:12)
 
Stacey E. Durham



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