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Die to Self

Sunday, 11th June 2023

Ps Ewen Chow

The two most powerful beings of the universe want us to die. We all know that Satan wants to kill our lives, but God also wants us to die. We must know that the way God sees death is different to how we see it. When God told Adam and Eve that when they ate the fruits they would die, we know from the Bible that they didn’t die right away, but their relationship with God were cut off when they ate the forbidden fruits. From God’s perspective, in a way they died because they were disconnected from God.

But Jesus also said, a seed must die in the ground in order for it to bear many fruits. When Jesus died on the cross, the veil in the temple torn apart. Before Jesus died, there was this vile between us and God, we were unable to see God face to face, but when the veil was torn, not only we can enter the Kingdom of God, but all the good things from the Kingdom were able to come to us on the world. 

God knew how the realm of Heaven and the realm of earth were connected. We are living both in the Heaven and on the earth. When we are saved and reborn, not only we live on earth, but we also live in Heaven with Jesus. When we die to ourselves, the Kingdom of Heaven was opened to us, and the things in Heaven can come through us to the earth. When death happens in one place, not only people go to Heaven, but the Heaven will also come to the earth. We may think death is the end, but for God it’s only a transition to go to Heaven.

Satan wants to twist our mindset about death, it wants us to give up, to give in, even to kill ourselves. We must not believe in the lies of Satan. On the other hand, we should die to ourselves, not to kill ourselves, but also not to suppress ourselves. When we suppress ourselves, we are accumulating our negative feelings, and one day we will explode and lose control. 

Dying to ourselves is also not to just let it go. Instead of letting go, we should be honest about our feelings, let all our vulnerability, disappointment, anger… to God. It’s not to let go but to commit. It’s also not to use our willpower to try to control ourselves. We hear lots of rules in church, and we use our willpower to try to be a good Christian. But one day when we cannot control ourselves any more then we will give up. One day we will either become like a prideful Pharisee or a disappointed loser. We cannot crucify ourselves but to let God crucify our old self to the cross.

Also it’s not a martyr mentality, because with this mindset we will only grow angry at God and at people. They treat themselves as martyrs they feel being wrongly accused and at the end, they will only hold grudges for church, for people, and for God. We might not be doing anything wrong, but we might live in a way which is not God’s Will for us.

Galatian 2:20b says, “The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”

It’s really hard to die to ourselves, because all the instincts in us don’t want to die at all, and will try everything to ‘stay alive’. It may be a few days, it may be a few weeks, it may be a few months, and it may be a few years. Furthermore, we have free will to choose, there are so many things we want to do, we want to use our own ways to solve the problems, and we tend to stop letting God take over.

To surrender is not taking an action but to stop taking actions. The power of resurrection will only start when we stop. When we stop using our own ways to act, when we completed give ourselves to God, then we will have true peace and release. Only we can make this decision, to say to God that we will stop using our own ways, to let God be God, and to wait upon God’s timing.