Take Up Your Cross

When He had called the people to Himself, with His disciples also, He said to them, “Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?”
Mark 8:34-36

Sacrifice, CHRISTLIKENESS. Growing in the likeness of Christ requires that we be willing to lay down our lives and take up our cross daily. It regularly confronts the human insistence on our own will, way, and wants.

But even as Jesus laid down His life for us, He invites us to lay down ours for His. It is not an equal exchange. He died to do for us what we could never do for ourselves—to save us and give us eternal life. But when we sacrifice for Him, that opens the way for His life to reveal even more of the glory of His way and will—to discover new dimensions of eternal love and liberty that bring freedom from bondage to our self-life.

TRUTH: With Jesus, righteousness no longer consists of observance of an external legal code. He likens it to an apprenticeship to Himself as Master Teacher through the Holy Spirit. Jesus Himself has fulfilled the Law and become our righteousness. In response, let us walk as devoted disciples being faithful to Him and obedient to His commands.

ACTION: Understand and accept that discipleship means forsaking all selfish personal ambition. Know that every true disciple must take up his cross.

Drawn from a “Kingdom Dynamic” and “Truth-in-Action” notes in the New Spirit-Filled Life Bible.

What does it mean to you to “take up your cross” and follow Jesus? Join the online conversation >





  • I definitely agree about when we lay down our lives it will reveal more glory of His way & will. To take up your cross and follow Jesus is a subject that many leaders do not share the “how to go about it”. I tried for years and finally prayed “Lord, take away anything in my life that keeps me from knowing You intimately and knowing I’m in Your will.” A few months later my husband lost his joy and we lost our house, but there was an inner knowing that this was God’s doing =Hope filled me. There were many trials until I finally realized I couldn’t live the Christian life. The Lord started showing me His Jealousy(Ex.34:14). He showed me He was jealous of me by asking me questions like: Do you love My Word?, Do you love to witness? Do you love to sing praises to Me? Of which I definitely said yes! He then said “That is what I’m jealous about, because it is not you but My Son in you Who is doing those things.” That is when I really experienced Gal. 2:20, but I had to face a lot of trials, pain and pruning before realizing it. Most Christians do not want to be pruned nor are they willing to tell the Lord “Do whatever it takes to let me know you more intimately.” i.e. They are not willing to “lose their lives for Him!”
    I still continued to have many painful trials but each one showed me what was in my heart (self-pity, jealousy, fears, anger) that no one else knew about. God used them to cleanse my conscience (Hebrews 4:12; 9:9, 14) by speaking to my heart His Word when they surfaced.
    We cannot die to self (take up our cross) but have to just be willing for the Lord to apply the cross (prune).

  • Esther Igbokwe says:

    Taking up our cross daily is very important in following the Master and asking the Lord’s help in areas where it seems heavy will make it easy to lay down our lives like He laid down His ,like Him he was always going to His father in a quiet place to receive daily help and instructions which helped Him to submit to the will of God the father and sacrifice his life .This way we will be able to carry our cross and follow Him.

  • Yolanda says:

    I believe I just need to be a servant for him. Try each day to improve my walk with Jesus Chirst.

  • Andte says:

    It’s dying to your will , wants, and things not of God but it not easy. And like tge sister said you can’t do it, it has to be God. We just yield and with Him we can do all , Lord help me!

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