Denying self – following Jesus


Numbers 32:1-33:39
Luke 4:31-5:11
Psalm 64:1-10
Proverbs 11:22


Luke 5:11 (CSB) “Then they brought the boats to land, left everything, and followed him (Jesus).”


The verse for today is a beautiful and powerful word picture.

For those involved in the original story, it meant that they gave up their fishing aspirations. They gave up what they knew and what they had planned to do the rest of their lives. They gave it up because they couldn’t be fishermen and follow Jesus at the same time, so they gave up fishing and followed Jesus.

For us, it is a clear reminder of what it means to be a true disciple of Jesus. To fully follow Jesus, it means that we give up good things in order to gain better things.

Luke 9:23 (CSB) “Then he said to them all, ‘If anyone wants to follow after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow me.'”

Did you get that? Jesus said that if we are to follow him, we must do as the disciples did. We must abandon things. 

What specifically must we abandon? Self! In order to follow Jesus, we must regularly say ‘no’ to any desire that we have that does not originate in a desire to follow and glorify Jesus.

But, in so doing, we will find the greatest joy. It doesn’t mean that life will be easier. It simply means that we will be living a life of eternal significance and developing greater fellowship with the God who loves us.

Someone who regularly denies themselves, submits to Christ’s authority, and follows Him realizes that there is incredible joy in doing so. 

Are you following Jesus?

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I have an incredible wife that God gave to me on May 10, 1997. Since then, the Lord has blessed us with three wonderful boys. I am also the pastor of the First Baptist Church of Polk City, Florida.

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