Is Being a Christian Hard? (Y1.T1.D56)
Updated: Dec 29, 2021
I’ve heard it said, “Becoming a Christian is simple, while being a Christian is hard.”
When it comes to salvation, all the work has already been done on the cross. Christ paid the wages of our sin with his death (Romans 6:23). All it takes to be saved is to “confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead” (Romans 10:9).
But what happens after we accept Jesus into our lives? Is it easy to live what we believe?
No, it’s not.
“Loving thy neighbor” sounds nice, but actually doing it requires sacrifice which can be painful. Imagine if you were told that the people you were sent to love would hate you in return.
That’s what Jesus told the twelve apostles whom he sent out. He said they would be rejected, falsely accused, and martyred saying, “You will be hated by all men for my name’s sake, but he who endures to the end will be saved.” (Matthew 10:22)
Living a Christ-like life means I stop living for myself. I must give up my friendship with the world because “Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God” (James 4:4).
The choice comes down to an easy life with God as my enemy, or a hard life with him as my friend. Personally, I have chosen the road less traveled (Matthew 7:14) and accept what Jesus said in Mark 8:34: “Whoever wants to come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.”
I Choose You, Lord
1 He went around the villages teaching. (Mark 6:6b)
2 He sent them out to preach God’s Kingdom and to heal the sick. (Luke 9:2)
5 Jesus sent these twelve out and commanded them, saying, “Don’t go among the Gentiles, and don’t enter into any city of the Samaritans. 6 Rather, go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 7 As you go, preach, saying, ‘The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand!’ 8 Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, and cast out demons. Freely you received, so freely give. (Matthew 10:5–8)
12 As you enter into the household, greet it. 13 If the household is worthy, let your peace come on it, but if it isn’t worthy, let your peace return to you. (Matthew 10:12–13)
16 “Behold, I send you out as sheep among wolves. Therefore be wise as serpents and harmless as doves. 17 But beware of men, for they will deliver you up to councils, and in their synagogues they will scourge you. 18 Yes, and you will be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a testimony to them and to the nations. 19 But when they deliver you up, don’t be anxious how or what you will say, for it will be given you in that hour what you will say. 20 For it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father who speaks in you.
21 “Brother will deliver up brother to death, and the father his child. Children will rise up against parents and cause them to be put to death. 22 You will be hated by all men for my name’s sake, but he who endures to the end will be saved. 23 But when they persecute you in this city, flee into the next, for most certainly I tell you, you will not have gone through the cities of Israel until the Son of Man has come.
24 “A disciple is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his lord. 25 It is enough for the disciple that he be like his teacher, and the servant like his lord. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebul, how much more those of his household! (Matthew 10:16–25)
13 They cast out many demons, and anointed many with oil who were sick, and healed them. (Mark 6:13)
You warned me I would have trouble in this world but to cheer up because You have overcome the world (John 16:33). I rest in that overcoming. Thank you for accepting wounds for my transgressions, for being crushed for my iniquities. Upon You was the chastisement that brought me peace, and with Your stripes, I am healed (Isaiah 53:5). Since You oppose the proud but give grace to the humble (James 4:6), help me extend that grace to others—even if they reject me. I'd rather be Your friend, than the world's.
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