A great reason why discipleship is so vitally important is that the Kingdom of God doesn’t function like the life we’ve known prior to entering a covenant relationship with God, being adopted by Him, and appointed as His personal ambassador to the people of Earth. It really is new life in Christ.
Understanding our new life in Christ can initially be disorienting, somewhat like this story told by James Miller:
You’ve heard of and maybe have even read Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”. But I run into very few people who have read the prequel, “Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There” , though you may have heard the poem Jabberwocky which is in it.
Alice walks through a mirror and ends up in a house that is a mirror image of her own, and has strange mirroring properties, so she has to learn to reorient herself. She finds she has to walk left when she wants to go right. Jabberwocky is written backwards, so Alice can only read it by holding it up to a mirror. Everything is backwards. To get to where you’re going, you have to walk in the other direction.
Alice is then invited into a chess game with a queen, with the promise that if she wins, she herself can be a queen. In the end, having won, she finds that power is unsatisfying and petty. It is an alternate reflection of what would actually make her happy. She’s gone in the wrong direction.
Those are Jesus’ Kingdom instructions. If you want to get to life, you have to walk towards death. If you want to get to freedom, you have to walk towards powerlessness. If you want to get to eternity, you have to take up your cross.
“Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it” (Matthew 10:39).
Through new life in christ, in God’s kingdom, those who want to be great must be servant of all, those who want fullness of life must give up their lives to Him, when you give you’re actually storing up treasures in heaven, we forgive people who don’t deserve to be forgiven, we love our enemies and bless those who curse us.
Being baptized into Christ is to be raised to walk in a new life in Christ can at first can be disorienting, as we are brand new creatures living counter to the culture we find ourselves in, with an entirely different purpose for existing. No wonder we need to be discipled in this new life!
Are you learning the way of God’s kingdom?
This article originally appeared here, and is used by permission.