Why Jesus? Living Beyond Myself

“And you shall love the Lord your God out of and with your whole heart and out of and with all your soul (your life) and out of and with all your mind (with your faculty of thought and your moral understanding) and out of and with all your strength. This is the first and principal Commandment. The second is like it and is this, you shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other Commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:30-31 (AMPC)

One of the most profound questions about life is Psalm 8:4 (TPT) – “…why would you bother with puny, mortal man or be infatuated with Adam’s sons?”

Why is God so vested in man?
What is our value to Him?

Our created life – spirit, soul, body – must receive God’s uncreated life to equip us to function as spiritual beings. We each must pursue, search out, experience the depth of our own nature, what the possibilities of our life are.

The wise man Socrates said – “The unexamined life is not worth living.”

His student, Plato, said – “There is an art of living and the living is excellent only when the self is prepared in all the depths and dimensions of its being.”

His “uncreated life” within us releases a power that causes us to “live beyond ourselves.”

From the moment of our new birth, His Spirit begins the process of bringing our spirit, soul and body, our mind, will and emotions, our heart, our entire being into effective cooperation with His Kingdom purposes. That power is within us yet beyond us, and its source is God Himself.

“…for it is God Who is all the while effectually at work in you [energizing and creating in you the power and desire], both to will and to work for His good pleasure and satisfaction and delight.” Philippians 2:13 (AMPC)

Once we become aligned with His Kingdom purposes, the degree to which we invest our total being mostly depends upon our initiative. The harmonization of our spirit, soul and body, mind, will and emotions, our heart into His Kingdom service will not be done for us – we must aggressively pursue His Kingdom and His righteousness.

 “So then, refuse to answer its (sins) call to surrender your body as a tool for wickedness. Instead, passionately answer God’s call to keep yielding your body to Him as one who has now experienced resurrection life! You live now for His pleasure, ready to be used for His noble purpose.” Romans 6:13 (TPT)

God will weaponize our body as an instrument of righteousness.

Peter shows us how to live beyond ourselves in spite of ourselves. Jesus has been preparing His disciples for His upcoming suffering and death on the cross. He shared His heart with them and told them that when it started, they would desert Him and run away. Peter insisted that he would not, even if all the others did. Jesus replied that Peter would deny Him three times before the rooster would crow.

 “Peter replied, ‘I absolutely will never deny You, even if I have to die with You!’ And all the others said the same thing.” Matthew 26:35 (TPT)

They all left the upper room where they had eaten the Last Supper and went to the Garden of Gethsemane. Jesus asked them to “watch with Me” – to stay awake and be with Him – but they soon fell asleep.

Luke 22:45 says they were “sleeping with grief.

Jesus came and found them and said, “The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak” Matthew 26:41 (AMPC).

They were not totally aligned in their spirit and body with His Kingdom purposes.

When the Roman soldiers came to arrest Jesus, Peter arose with his sword and chopped a soldier’s ear off.

“…Then all the disciples deserted Him and, fleeing, escaped.” Matthew 26:56 (AMPC)

Verse 58 (AMPC) – “But Peter followed Him at a distance, as far as the courtyard of the high priest’s home; he even went inside and sat with the guards to see the end.”

There on three separate occasions he was accused of being one of Jesus’ followers. Each time he denied it and the third time used profanity.

“Then Peter began to invoke a curse on himself and to swear, I do not even know the Man! And at that moment a rooster crowed.” Verse 74

“And Peter remembered Jesus’ words, when He had said, ‘Before a single rooster crows, you will deny and disown Me three times.’ And he went outside and wept bitterly.” Verse 75

But God was not done with Peter yet! His purpose would not be hindered by Peter’s betrayal. He knew Peter was a rock – “Petros.”

Peter watched Jesus suffer and die and encountered the risen Christ in John 21:17, 19, 22 –
Jesus renewed His commission to Peter – “…feed My Sheep.” “…follow Me!” “…you follow Me!”

Ten days Peter waited in the upper room with the others until the Holy Spirit came and baptized them. The hand that had reached for the sword to kill, the legs that ran away, the mouth that forgot its confession that Jesus is the Messiah and denied any relationship with Him, cursing to prove it, now were “all in” to His Kingdom purpose.

With the Holy Spirit empowering his hands, feet and mouth, Peter “standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice…” – Acts 2:14.

Three thousand souls came to Christ. Signs, wonders and miracles were performed by Peter and the Apostles. Day by day, from house to house, they proclaimed Jesus, and the Lord added to their community those being saved. (Acts 2:41-47)

Peter is now a “rock,” living in dynamic interaction with God and His Kingdom purposes.

To “live beyond yourself” – you are to love the Lord Yahweh, your God, with every passion of your heart, with all the energy of your being, with every thought that is within you and with all your strength.

Discussion Questions:
1. How are we equipped to function as "spiritual beings?"
2. What is Go's life within us called?
3. How does God "weaponize" us for His service?
4. What does the name "Peter" mean?

I love you Lord Yahweh, with every passion of my heart and with all of my energy and strength.  Like Peter, help me to live in dynamic interaction with You and Your Kingdom purposes, so I can live beyond myself.

Next Steps:
Day to day, from place to place, person to person, proclaim Jesus! By leaving "Why Jesus" prayer cards with your information or theChurch's information.  Bring someone to church with you! Sign-up for one of our Small Group Classes beginning Wednesday, February 5th. 

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