Our church is embarking on a discipleship journey since Sept 2019. This is my reflection on discipleship at its core. To anyone who can fully define discipleship is to be naive? Yet, personally I believe the apostle Paul in Galatians 2:20 underscore an essential clue to discipleship at its core.
I would like to use Passion translation for this purpose: “My old identity has been co-crucified with Messiah and no longer lives, for the nails of his cross crucified me with him. And now the essence of this new life is no longer mine, for the Anointed One lives his life through me—we live in union as one! My new life is empowered by the faith of the Son of God who loves me so much that he gave himself for me, and dispenses his life into mine! (Galatians 2:20).
And I humbly suggest four implications here for discipleship viz Crucifixion of self, Complete union with Jesus, Empowered Faith, Deeply secured love.
First, Paul recognized, in his discipleship journey, his own flesh and desires have been put to death by the nails of Jesus’s cross. It is crucifixion of self and his old nature ended, period. Second, He experienced the power of Jesus’ death and resurrection in his life and this power has won over his old life, transforming him into Christ-likeness. This complete union with Jesus means that Christ now lives in him and through him, an inside out phenomenon. Not only does he have a new identity and life, he has a victorious one! Third, his faith is no longer the same, not on man’s efforts and achievements but anchored on an empowered faith that trusted in the promise of his master’s love. Lastly, it’s crucial and non-negotiable which I believe is the key to everything in this discipleship journey. Paul, having deeply understood, accepted with a heart of gratitude and obedience toward this unconditional, magnificent and everlasting love of Jesus. He is anchored in this deeply secured love. Wow!
In the light of what Paul said in Galatians 2:20, you are part of this discipleship journey if you have already received his saving grace and are in the process of being transformed by his sanctifying grace. Be thankful and believe in his promise!
Ps David Lim Chin Ann