Who will you Crucify?

Introduction: (Self or Jesus? The scriptures talk to us about Christ s death and about dying a figurative death ourselves. In the principles we will study we will see we all have a choice to crucify self or Jesus.)

I. You Must Crucify Self: Gal. 5:24 (Suppressing the desires of the flesh is part of what it means to belong to Christ.)

1. Daily Effort: I Cor. 15:31 (This self sacrifice is a daily pursuit.)

2. Not Glory In Flesh: Gal. 6:13-14 (Paul spoke of those who gloried in the flesh. We crucify the flesh by refusing to glory in it.)

3. Don t Serve Sin: Rom. 6:6 (The purpose of our being cleansed from sin is that we would not serve sin. So we must fight to avoid the old sinful habits that could so easily dominate our lives.)

4. Specific Targets: Col. 3:5 (The Lord commands us to put to death old sinful habits. He gives us specific things to target in our effort to crucify the flesh.)

A. Fornication: (Obviously any kind of illicit sexual sin.)

B. Uncleanness: (A general term to describe degenerate living. It includes almost any moral sin.)

C. Inordinate Affection: Rom. 1:26-27 (Lust for something that is vile and forbidden. It is associated with homosexuality in scripture.)

D. Evil Concupiscence: (A stronger word, indicating a craving for that which is wrong. Note this self crucifixion involves dealing with strong desires, things that are hard to defeat.)

E. Greed: I Tim. 6:10 (A term that cuts to the heart of human vice. Greed is so wrong because it can lead to so my other sins.)

5. Worth The Suffering: Rom. 8:17-18 (Our self denial and the suffering with Christ it brings is well worth the reward we will receive some day.) II Tim. 2:11-12 (If you die for him today you will live with him tomorrow. Suffering with Christ today lets you share in his eternal reign.)

II. You Can Abandon Jesus At The Cross: Gal. 2:20 (Paul spoke of being crucified WITH Christ. When we deny the flesh, we join Christ on a cross. He doesn t die alone. When we fail to crucify the flesh, we are forsaking this opportunity to die with Christ and we are leaving him at the cross to die alone. Instead of leaving him to die alone, look at the opportunity you have to declare his life and death.)

1. Show His Life By Sharing His Death: II Cor. 4:10-11 (Paul spoke of dying daily for Jesus Christ. While this may be speaking of physical threats on their lives, it is not far from the principle of self denial. When you share in Christ death through self denial, you show his life to the world around you.)

2. Show His Death By Imitating His Life: I Jn. 2:6, Eph. 5:2 (The Lord commands us to imitate him, to try and be like him. When Paul speaks of this walk he calls to mind Christ s death. A life of loving self sacrifice is certain to show Christ s loving self sacrifice on the cross. Thus when we imitate his life, we call to mind his death.)

III. You Put Jesus Back On The Cross When You Stray: Heb. 6:4-6 (When you walk away from God you crucify Christ afresh and you openly shame him.)

IV. Your Sins Already Put Him On The Cross Once: I Pet. 2:24 (Peter s words are emphatic. Christ, in his own body, took your sins to the cross. He alludes to the prophets words which will help us realize the significance of this concept.) Isa. 53:4-6 (The prophet uses equally emphatic language to explain what Jesus did on the cross. While we like sheep wander about in sin, Christ dutifully took the burden of our sin up Golgotha and hung with it on the cross. Your sins have put him on the cross once. The whip that scourged his back bears your fingerprints. The hammer that drove the nails into his hands bears your fingerprints. Wasn t that enough? Must you crucify him again in the choice you make to serve sin?)

Conclusion: Rom. 8:13-14 (This leaves before us a simple choice. We can crucify self in this life and be rewarded in eternity. Or, we can serve self today, only to have God punish us in eternal death.)