The Seed that Becomes the Harvest 2
1 Corinthians 15:36-37 (CEV)
36 Don’t be foolish. A seed must die before it can sprout from the ground.
37 Wheat seeds and all other seeds look different from the sprouts that come up.
As we read in the previous entry, we learned that the seed is placed into the ground for a greater purpose! For transformation, and for bigger impact….the seed must enter into a process. One of the great PRINCIPLES of the process of the seed is SELFLESSNESS, or giving UP our own wants and will!!
We have our GREAT example: The Lord Jesus Christ! During our consecration we observed His own submission to a purpose and objective that was BIGGER than Himself! He LAID down His life…..for the sins of the World!! He teaches us through the cross, and the Apostle Paul picks up with some very enlightening revelation of his own. But before we get into what the Paul teaches us let’s make sure we honestly talk about self. (When we are speaking of self we are not talking about taking pride in yourself or keeping yourself up. This is a spiritual application, speaking about self in the carnal nature, or the nature that draws us away from the will of God. By all means take care of yourself, but don’t give in to carnality and/or flesh.)
Self is only concerned about self. What I want, what I DESERVE, what belongs to ME!! This mindset is not a Kingdom mindset. Self obsession only leads to a cycle of emptiness.
Because SELF is NEVER SATISFIED!! Let’s be HONEST here!! (Tell the truth shame the devil!) Our selfish CARNAL nature only wants what it wants!
And our quest to please SELF puts us on the wrong side of God!! Jesus stated: “If you are going to follow me, you must FIRST deny yourself, THEN pick up your cross and FOLLOW ME!! (Matthew 16:24)
We can never be effective in the Kingdom of God if we have an unhealthy relationship with self.
Reading: Let’s study what the Apostle Paul writes to the Phillipian church:
Phillipians 3:4 Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more:
3:5 Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee;
3:6 Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.
3:7 But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ.
3:8 Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ,
3:9 And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:
3:10 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;
3:11 If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead.
Paul had a history. And his history from a religious standpoint looked GOOD! A descendant of Israel, a statesman of the Jewish law, on a mission to HONOR what he understood as protecting the mandates that law. Esteemed highly, and given orders to persecute the church….he was the MAN! Yet after meeting Christ what he gained upon himself was nothing! The part that we often forget to teach and/or preach is what we have to give up in the process of transformation.
The seed can’t keep his old form or identify with his old form after he has submitted to the process. Submission to the process requires the relinquishing of SELF! All our selfish ambitions (not knocking ambition at all) have to be adjusted for the relationship with Christ.
Thank You for your awesome example you set before us in the person of Jesus Christ. Denying even His own comfort, for Your purpose and Your will. Thank you for the process that transformed our future FOREVER!! Your selfless love.
We ask that you would help us to deny ourselves. Our transformation will not start without first putting down everything we THOUGHT we needed. Forgive us for putting ourselves over Your purpose. Give us the desire to know you in the power of resurrection, and the understanding of Your sufferings…so the this process will be successful in our transformation from the seed to the harvest.
In Jesus Name, Amen.
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