Something I wrote in 2006 has been coming around and back again, and I always assume that it’s on this blog. It’s not. So today I’m finally going to post it. The reason is that we’re discussing and expounding on it in this week’s podcast. I invite you to go over to ShulamitePodcast.com and listen to it. It’s really an amazing episode!
I have to confess, I’ve never been able to find the original file of what I wrote, but in 2010, Martha had it and read an excerpt in her audio series, Conquered by the Blood. That excerpt is what I’m sharing here. In it, I discuss the phenomenon of surrendering to our cross but not dying on it. I gave an example about how Peter had great commitment in Matthew 26:26-35, where he says to Christ, “Even if I must die with You!” But Peter’s committed love and surrendered spirit to the process didn’t give him the power to perform his pledge.
Love that professes to die for the Lord can’t carry it out by a determination of the flesh. No matter how much we wish it to be so, flesh is completely incapable. Oh, we so hate to be that dependent on God, but when we finally release ourselves into His ample hands, WOW! The miracles we’ll see Him perform before our eyes!
From Conquered by the Blood Disc #1, “Not Shamed”:
This morning I stumbled over something that John wrote in 2006, and it made me wish I had put it in my booklet, Decision. He’s talking about II Timothy 3, where in the last days there’ll be times of difficulty and people will be lovers of self.
He wrote, “I see very clearly that this passage is speaking of those who live the religious life without the exchanged life. Without going to our personal cross with Christ, we have no exchange of life. It’s at the cross where we surrender our life to death, that we make the transaction of exchange. We can’t have that exchange bar going to the cross. We can’t be free from our old Adamic life unless we go to the cross with Christ. The legal transaction is performed only on the cross.
I have attempted to surrender while avoiding death. I thought the surrender was the death. There’s a surrender that effects no immediate change. It’s the surrender that’s made in choice only. A choice? How can you choose to bow but not die? I have!
Peter had made the choice, “Even if I must die with You,” but the cross-life had not yet hit the Peter-life. I’ve believed in submission and surrendered to the Spirit without embracing Christ on the cross. This is impossible!
I can’t have His life without losing mine.
I believed that a bowed will was what the Lord required – a submitted self to the process. Yet I got up after each time I surrendered and lived. How could I do this? Simply. If we believe in our old life and see it as a yielded entity without the actual death that is performed on the cross, we are deceiving ourselves. But if this choice is truly made, it’s heard by God and He’s committed to take us to the next step, which is to embrace the cross and lose our own life.