A Deeper Look at Luke 9:23


Some time ago I had the privilege to work with a ministry in Detroit. During one of the breaks, God gave me an opportunity to share the discipleship vision with a pastor. He was very open to hear what the Spirit helped me understand over the years about this great topic. 

I went straight to Luke 9:23 “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me.” When it comes to discipleship this is one my favorite verses. I told him that Jesus was clear about the requirements for discipleship.
Let me share some of the thoughts I shared with this dear pastor.


1) Deny SELF:
According to Jesus denying self is the starting point. Therefore knowledge of SELF is prerequisite for denying self. If you spell SELF backwards and add an ‘H’ at the end you obtain the word F-L-E-S-H. I believe the greatest obstacle towards genuine discipleship is the flesh. The problem is that Christians cannot crucify what they cannot define. That is why the knowledge of self is so important.

Food for thought: Please define SELF? Please define and describe your FLESH?


2) Take up his CROSS:
Subsequently, knowledge of the CROSS is required in order for one to embrace it. The ‘cross’ has lost its significance in preaching and teaching the Word of God in our days. That is why we don’t see too many Christians carrying their crosses. Most of the time we hear a cross-less gospel; a flesh-appealing, feel-good gospel. The danger is that a cross-less gospel becomes a Christ-less gospel. I am almost sure that some said that “A crossless church makes a Christless Christianity.” I am not sure about you but I fully agree with that statement.

Food for thought: Please provide the biblical definition of the CROSS? Please define the CROSS of Christ?


3) Follow Me:
All hinges in following Christ. In God’s economy follow-ship leads to fellow-ship. Ultimately, Christ wants us to have fellow-ship in order for our follow-ship to work. However, we cannot follow SOMEONE who we did not know. So, in discipleship, knowing Jesus is crucial. Why? Christ says: “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me” (John 10:27). To know Christ personally and intimately is the very essence of the eternal life. John writes, “This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent” (John 17:3). Do you see this? In order to follow Jesus we must hear His voice. To have eternal life is to know Jesus. Knowing Jesus leads to knowing God. I hope you see these connections. And these are only a few of these spiritual connections the Holy Spirit is revealing to us through the Word of God.

Food for thought:

Please define biblical DISCIPLESHIP?

Please provide seven (7) spiritual dimensions of genuine discipleship?


Do you struggle with these concepts or have difficulties to address questions like:


Define SELF?

  • Define and describe your FLESH?
  • Provide the biblical definition of the CROSS?
  • Define the CROSS of Christ?
  • Define biblical DISCIPLESHIP?
  • Provide seven (7) SPIRITUAL DIMENSIONS of discipleship? 


Well… We strongly recommend enrolling in the Advanced Discipleship Training(ADT) where you will discover answers to these types of questions and much more. Soon we will move into MODULE VII: FREE in Christ - Understanding Spiritual Warfare. I have so much fun teaching this module!


For a 6 minutes video clip in ENG click here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yrHvbbWxZRs
For a 8 minutes video clip in ROM click here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IxOl6jUyaUY
To register go to: http://urfm.org/adt-registration-forms.html 

It is a mystery to me why Christians do not know the things mentioned above. Or, maybe there is a reason ‘why’ the spiritual dimensions of discipleship are hidden from so many. Maybe we need to be more involved in being discipled and making disciples. Maybe we need to take the Great Commission more literally. Just may be. Food for thought: What do you think? I love your comments! 


With love in Christ’s service,

Valy Vaduva
Spiritual Mentor / Life Coach

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“If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me” (Luke 9:23) -Jesus Christ


DESCEND into your HEART: ​​​

(1) Are you hungry for the Word of God?

(2) Do you desire to become all that God intends for you?

(3) Are you passionate to let Christ make a difference in you and around you?


If you responded “yes” to one or more of the questions above we strongly believe that we have a godly solution for you. We challenge you to give ADT a try.​ ​


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With LOVE in HIS Service,

Valy Vaduva ​

Spiritual Mentor / Life Coach


P.S.: We are delighted to have you as a student/disciple (mathetes[1]) in the Advanced Discipleship Training (ADT) offered by URFM.​ [1] The Greek word mathetes (translated disciple) is found more than 250 times in the New. According to Greek Bible scholar Spiros Zodhiates, editor of the Hebrew-Greek Key Word Study Bible, mathetes “means more than mere pupil or learner. It means an adherer who accepts the instruction given to him and makes it his rule of conduct.” In other words a New Testament type disciple is one who learns by putting what he or she learns into experience.

A Closer look at the Great Commission

RADICAL OBEDIENT DISCIPLESHIP – Leading to Maturity

Think beyond ‘just evangelism’ and ‘just missions’; think radical discipleship and spiritual transformation; think spiritual growth and maturity; think multiplication and spiritual reproduction.

...

Hudson Taylor, (21 May 1832 – 3 June 1905), the famous missionary to China, once said, “The Great Commission is not an option to be considered; it is a command to be obeyed.” Then, how are we supposed to respond to the Great Commission today?

. . .


My grand conclusion is this: It is all about Jesus and Jesus is all about discipleship.

Let’s pray that Christians all over the world would get out of their comfort zones, and – be discipled (thus becoming equipped for the task) to make disciples. I am fascinated by Paul’s boldness and faithfulness to transfer his godly legacy to his ‘son in faith’ - Timothy before his martyrdom, “The things which you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, entrust these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also” (2 Timothy 2:2). Should we do less than that? You be the judge. 

With love in Christ,
Valy Vaduva
Spiritual Mentor / Life Coach

The aspect of believer’s identity is just as important in the life of a Christian as the issue of spiritual victory. Knowing who we are in Christ is tremendously important in the life and walk with God of any disciple. The spiritual identity of the believer is particularly important because throughout the church history Christians have understood that they are just ‘sinners saved by grace’ who have developed their personal image in the same way as the world. But we must recognize that the believer's self-image must be based on a very solid biblical foundation. If not, Satan will tempt the believer in this crucial area. 

My deepest desire and fervent prayer is that every child of God will know by spiritual revelation WHO he or she is in Christ. (See Ephesians 1:15-23). 

Let me ask you: Are you still confused about who you are in Christ? Do you, as disciple of Christ, want to learn and understand all aspects of your spiritual identity? Then, I strongly recommend you join the ADT Family of Students/Disciples in Advanced Discipleship Training (ADT) offered ONLINE by Upper Room Fellowship Ministry (URFM). For details about ADT watch this video clip:

MODULE VI explores all major aspects of spiritual identity. Are we, as Christians, just sinners saved by grace? Or, we are different from anyone else on this planet? Scripturally speaking, when we are born again, we are a “new creation” altogether. (See 2 Corinthians 5:17). Moreover, we are “a royal priesthood.” (See 1 Peter 2:9). 

I encourage you to begin the enrollment process. The virtual file contains: (1) ADT Application, (2) ADT Covenant, (3) ADT Personal Essay (4) ADT Personal Support Pledge, (5) Three (3) Letters of Recommendation, (6) ADT Learning Style and Learning Style Assessment Test. To access the registration forms please go to: http://www.urfm.org/adt-registration-forms.html.

If you hurry up with the registration process, you will be able to join the ADT Family for Module VI. It will start with a live WEBINAR on Saturday (March 26, 2016) at 12:00 noon EST (Michigan). 

We are ready to welcome you in, just let us know your decision. 

Valy Vaduva 

Spiritual Mentor / Life Coach

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