“He (Jesus) said unto them, But whom say you that I am?” And Simon Peter answered and said, You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God. And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed are you, Simon Bar-jona: for flesh and blood have not revealed it unto you, but My Father Who is in Heaven.” Matthew 16:15-17.
Spiritual knowledge is always given by revelation. It is not head knowledge but heart knowledge. This revelation will always be of and line up with the Word of God. There is no new revelation outside of the Word of God. It requires seeking Jesus for Who He is and what He has done for head knowledge to become spiritual knowledge.
There is only one way to follow Jesus and that is through Calvary’s Cross. Jesus came to die on the Cross to pay our sin debt and His blessed Resurrection was never in doubt once our debt was paid. “Then Peter took Him, and began to rebuke Him, saying, Be it far from You, Lord: this shall not be unto You. But He turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind Me, Satan: you are an offence unto Me: for you savor not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.” Matt. 16:22-23.
Sadly, there are still many who will rebuke the Cross of Jesus for victory over sin. “Then said Jesus unto His Disciples, If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.” Matt. 16:24. Their idea of taking up their cross is taking up their works and self efforts instead of taking up His victory daily…they forget the part of “let him deny himself”. The denying of one’s self is not self denial or abstinence, that is not deliverance, it is denying of one’s self efforts and having faith in Jesus’ victory. It is a humility of knowing, not that we can say no to sin but that we can say yes to God.
“For in that He died, He died unto sin once: but in that He liveth, He liveth unto God.Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 6:10-11. We are not spiritually alive unto God until our great confession of Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour. Before our born again experience, we could still say no to sin but with the same results. “We”, in and of ourselves, do not have dominion over our sin nature. If we did, there would be no reason for Jesus to go to the Cross. Hence, we deny our self effort and maintain our faith in Jesus’ victory. Before our Salvation we are unable to say yes to God. We cannot, do not, will not and never have had dominion over sin before we accept Jesus. It is our ability to say “yes” to God after our Salvation that allows the Holy Spirit to dethrone our reigning sin nature, not our ability to say no to our sin nature – most of us have been doing that the majority of our lives.
It is the humility of knowing we can now say yes to God because of what Jesus did on Calvary’s Cross that allows us to follow Him by the means of the Cross. It is not the Cross that we are following, it is Jesus – Who He is and what He did on Calvary’s Cross which enable us to be alive unto God, spiritually alive, once we confess the Great Confession of Jesus Christ as Son of the Living God.
-Donna Clark Warren