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Dying to LiveDying to Live
by Steve Higginbotham

Then he said to the crowd, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must put aside your selfish ambition, shoulder your cross daily, and follow me. If you try to keep your life for yourself, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for me, you will find true life. (Luke 9:23-24)

    Once, while “channel surfing,” a program caught my attention. A man and a woman were trapped underwater in a wrecked mini-submarine. They had an insufficient amount of air for both of them to safely swim back to the main submarine. However, they had a plan. The girl would allow herself to drown. The man, who was the stronger and faster swimmer, would swim back to the submarine, dragging her along. When he reached the safety of the submarine, he would attempt to resuscitate her.

    Well, the plan worked. It was however, a rather macabre solution to their problem — she had to die in order to live.

We too, must choose to die if you we truly want to live.
    I couldn’t help but think that this same paradox exists in the life of every Christian. Every child of God has made a similar decision — a decision to die to self and sin so that we might live eternally with Christ. That’s not an easy decision to make. Selflessness is a mature quality. Exchanging temporal pleasures that can be experienced now for eternal pleasures that may not be experienced for decades to come is also a mature decision. But they are right decisions that you will not eternally regret.

    Friends, you and I must make a choice. We too, must choose to die if you we truly want to live.

When we became Christians and were baptized to become one with Christ Jesus, we died with him? For we died and were buried with Christ by baptism. And just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glorious power of the Father, now we also may live new lives.

Since we have been united with him in his death, we will also be raised as he was. Our old sinful selves were crucified with Christ so that sin might lose its power in our lives. We are no longer slaves to sin. For when we died with Christ we were set free from the power of sin. And since we died with Christ, we know we will also share his new life. We are sure of this because Christ rose from the dead, and he will never die again. Death no longer has any power over him. He died once to defeat sin, and now he lives for the glory of God. So you should consider yourselves dead to sin and able to live for the glory of God through Christ Jesus.
(Romans 6:3-11)
      © 2002, Steve Higginbotham. From MercEmail. Used by permission.

      Title: "Dying to Live"
      Author: Steve Higginbotham
      Publication Date: February 9, 2002

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