Christians are called to die
Romans 8:36 -
As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.
When Paul wrote this verse he was referring to Psalms 44:22. People think this verse speaks of our physically dying as martyrs for God's people.
There was a brother on whom someone prophesized that he would die as a martyr for Christ and this brother took it very seriously, this affected the way he looked at life and his mission in the Lord. When I prayed to the Lord on this I did not get any such message so I explained things to him and caused him to change his mind set. Today many years have passed and this brother still works with purpose not of death but of life.
A soldier fights for his country so that the people of his country have good life. He knows death is a great reality for the kind of work he has taken. But he does not become a crazy man and just go and die in the battle, he knows he being alive as long as he can is necessary so that the battle is won. His mission is not to die but to have victory. Similarly a cricketer playing test cricket knows he will get out so does not close his eyes and just swing his bat around to try to make runs quickly. He knows this is a long match so he has to remain at the wicket as long as he can so that he scores and his teams scores. He will also not remain at the wicket just defending the ball not making runs, that will make his team lose, but he will take risk shorts in between, that too calculated risk shoots not blind risk shoots. If we study Jesus' 3 years ministry (that is recorded), He played it like a test match and not like a 20-20 tournament.
If we read the today's verse it says 'for thy sake we are killed all day long'. If a person dies he does not take the whole day to die. Physical death is instant, so this verse is not talking of physical death. When I check both the scriptures in their original text (Psalms 44:22 - Hebrew and Romans 8:36 - Greek) both of them are very clear in what they say, but the English translation projects a different message. The word used for sheep in both is 'sheep of slaughter' not 'sheep for the slaughter'. You may ask, what's the difference between them? They both die. No doubt they both die, the 'sheep for slaughter' is a sheep killed for the consumption of man but the 'sheep of slaughter' speaks of the sacrificial sheep, killed for God. We are 'sheep of slaughter' not 'sheep for slaughter'. We die for God's Kingdom while serving his people and not die for the people while doing 'God's work'. We are not called to die for a religion or while doing religious works.
Everyone's coming into this world and leaving it is in the Hand of the Lord, the only difference about people of God is their life on earth is a fulfilment and their journey a pleasure for God.
A living soldier is of greater value than a dead soldier to the army, but a scared living soldier is a great liability to the army.
Let us be soldiers that have no fear of death but let us know we have a mission for which we live and we have to complete it before we sleep. If we are in the Lord and walk by His Spirit then we will successfully complete our mission and do our part of the race so as to win our high crown in Heaven.
We are called to die not to our enemy but to ourselves; to die to our flesh, our carnal nature, surrendering to God and His purpose of saving His people. Unless we do not carry the Ark of Covenant (CROSS) we will not have victory and to carry it we need to be a Levite, separated from this world and things of this world, depending only on God for all our needs.
[ Prayer Starter ]
Lord, a shepherd put his life at risk against wild animals but he knows his purpose is to protect and lead his sheep. When David faced wild like the bear and the lion animals as a shepherd, You Lord gave him all the courage and strength to devour them. You protected him from them. We know Lord when we are in You, You do not let us be victims of our enemies until we have finished our purpose here on earth. You will not let us sleep with our mission incomplete...
This prayer we make in Jesus' Name, Amen.
[ Reference ]
Psalms 44:22 - Yea, for thy sake are we killed all the day long; we are counted as sheep for the slaughter.
35 What shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
36 As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.
37 But, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
15 And the LORD said unto me, Take unto thee yet the instruments of a foolish shepherd.
16 For, lo, I will raise up a shepherd in the land, which shall not visit those that be cut off, neither shall seek the young one, nor heal that that is broken, nor feed that that standeth still: but he shall eat the flesh of the fat, and tear their claws in pieces.
17 Woe to the idol shepherd that leaveth the flock! the sword shall be upon his arm, and upon his right eye: his arm shall be clean dried up, and his right eye shall be utterly darkened.
James 1:12 - Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.
1 Peter 4:1-4
1 The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed:
2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;
3 Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock.
4 And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.
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