Losing your life for christPresentation Transcript
Losing Your Life For Christ Mark 8:34-35 Greg Heath May 27, 2012
Audio Text for Previous SlideI want you to meet Martha MeyersMartha was born on March 13, 1945She graduated from Lee High School in Montgomery, Alabama in 1963She earned her Bachelors degree in Biology at Samford University in 1967She earned a medical degree from the University of Alabama in 1971While attending the University of Alabama, she completed a residency in the country of Yemen.While in Yemen she fell in love with the people of Yemen.She later attended seminary and after completing seminary she became a missionary in Yemen for the thenForeign Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention—Now called the International Mission Board.She served for 24 years as a Southern Baptist Missionary to Yemen working at the Jibla Baptist Hospital.While at the hospital, she made countless visits to families out in the country providing medical attention toadults and children.She was always aware of the danger of being a Christian missionary in a Middle Eastern country.One day, while on one of her trips for medical visits, her vehicle was hijacked and she was taken hostage.Her captives put her in the back of her SUV covered her with a carpet and commanded that she stay quiet orthey would kill her.She replied “I will be in heaven”She was later releasedThree years later, on December 30, 2002, she and two other Southern Baptist missionaries were killed whena lone gunman smuggled a gun into the hospital and opened fire. Martha was 57 years old.She had already shared with others that when she died she wanted to be buried in Yemen.Martha Myers is one of an estimated 70 million Christians who have died for the cause of Christ in the last2,000 years. Most of them in the 20th Century.
Dying for Christ• Over the course of American history, 1.3 million Americans have died serving their country in a time of war.• In that same period, over 45 million Christians gave their life for the cause of Christ.• It is estimated that at least 170,000 Christians will die for their faith this year.• In this hour, 20 people will die because of their faith in Jesus Christ.
Persecution• At this moment, over 200 million Christians are suffering persecution worldwide.• Incidents of persecution are on the rise worldwide according to a 2011 study by Stonegate Institute.
No Surprise• Jesus warned his followers that they would suffer persecution and even face death.• “Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me.”— Matthew 24:9 (NIV)
Called to Give Up Our Life for Christ• “34 Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: ‘If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 35 For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me and for the gospel will save it.’ ”— Mark 8:34-35.
“Whoever loses his life for me”• This saying of Christ has been given more emphasis than any other of Christ’s sayings.• Found in at least 7 places and in all four gospels.• Luke 9:24, Luke 14:26-27, Luke 17:33, Matthew 10:38-39, Matthew 16:24- 25, Mark 8:34-35, John 12:25
What does it mean to lose your life for Christ?• You may be called literally to give your life for Christ.• As our society becomes more hostile to Christianity and to the gospel, this becomes more and more likely.
What does it mean to lose your life for Christ?• We are all called to give up our life for Christ.• “Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship.”—Romans 12:1• We belong to Christ. We were bought by the blood of Jesus Christ.• It is no longer about us. It is all about Jesus Christ.
How is it possible?• We are incapable of living our life pleasing to God.• It is only possible through the power of Jesus Christ in our lives.• It is only possible when we rely on the guidance and strength provided by yielding to the Holy Spirit in our lives.
What is the cost for trying to keep your life?• Losing you life and soul.• Forfeiting the joy of serving God.• “For whoever wants to save his life will lose it.”—Mark 8:35a (NIV)• “What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, yet forfeit his soul?”—Mark 8:36 (NIV)
What is the cost for trying to keep your life?• “and anyone who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me.”—Matthew 10:37 (NIV)• We are called to put to death our will and commit ourselves totally to God.• God demands your whole being.• We cannot present yourself a sacrifice to God if you are not obeying His will and His Word.
What are the results?• The lost will be reached for Jesus Christ.• “This will result in you being witnesses to them.”—Luke 21:13 (NIV)• You will experience abundant life in Christ.• “By standing firm you will gain life.”—Luke 21:19. (NIV)
Pray That You Will Be Willing!• Are you willing to die for Jesus Christ?• Equally important, are you willing to live for Jesus Christ?• The only way we can live our life for Christ is to give up our life for Christ.• Are you willing to put to death your will and your desires?• Are you willing to commit yourself totally to Jesus Christ today?• NOW IS THE TIME.• You will never have THIS opportunity again.
Please commit yourself to prayingfor our brothers and sisters in Christ who are facing persecution all around the world today.