Maybe it is time for some of us Christians to apologize. In our desire to have others become Christians, we may have been less than honest with our non-Christian friends. We have talked in terms of "converting," "being saved," "joining with us," and other religious sounding words. In truth, becoming a Christian can be explained by a much simpler term: it is an invitation to die.

Becoming a Christian requires you to die. Jesus came to this world because God wanted you to live with him forever. He offers eternal life. The perfect God wants the imperfect man to live with Him forever. He made that possible by letting Jesus die for all the things we did that were unlike God. Jesus came here to die for you, so you could live.

But to do that requires you to die with him. Jesus often talked about losing one's life to find it. He used illustrations of seeds dying to produce life. Paul, one of the early followers of Jesus, talks of being crucified with Jesus. The response to Jesus of being immersed in water is referred to as being "baptized into his death."

So if we as Christians have ever left the impression that following Jesus is anything short of dying to yourself so that you can live ... then we are sorry. It is the ultimate commitment — just as Jesus made the ultimate sacrifice. So following Jesus is not really about us. It is about him. We surrender, give up our lives, and die with him. All so we can live. Forever.

Maybe that even explains why some who would call themselves Christians do not live much differently than the world. It is because they never died. So the decision to be baptized into Jesus is not an act you do. It is not a step you take. It is not a doctrine you believe. It is a death you die.

I was crucified. It changed my life.
If you would like to visit more about dying to live ... write me at Or join our blog discussion at

(Expressed written consent must be obtained prior to republishing, retransmitting or otherwise reusing the content of this article.