Living with Christ as Lord
posted by Navigators on March 2nd, 2023 in Discipleship | Jesus | Person of God
By Scott Brown, Sydney City Leader (first published in Compass Autumn 2023)
From the earliest days of the Navigators, Dawson Trotman’s Wheel Illustration highlighted the importance of living with Christ as Lord, or as he termed it, with Christ the Centre. Galatians 2:20 and 2 Corinthians 5:17 served as focal verses to this point, outlining the foundational truths that we have been crucified with Christ, created anew in Him to live our lives now through faith in the Son of God who loved us and gave himself for us. Today, a focus on living with Christ as Lord in the process of discipleship is arguably even more essential as worldly culture rejects, and often demonises, the notion of lordship all together. Instead, a priority and love of “self” is elevated above everything else. So, what does it mean to live with Christ as Lord?
Let me begin by saying, we could easily devote an entire Compass to examining the scriptures and reveling in the resounding truth that Christ is the Lord. This position is not dependent on how we respond to him or view him – it is who He is because He willingly died on the cross. One of my favourite verses on the subject is Philippians 2:9 -11 which proclaims, …“that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” What a glorious and definitive truth that Jesus Christ is the Lord! This means that everyone and everything ultimately lives with Christ as Lord, whether they acknowledge Him or not.
But David communicates something much more compelling and profound in Psalm 16:2 when he says, “I said to the LORD (YHWH/Jehovah) you are MY Lord (Adonai), I have no good apart from you” (emphasis added). In using the phrase “my Adonai”, David acknowledges God not only as the Lord, but as his personal Master and King. Furthermore, he implies there is no other choice he would make because apart from his King there is no good to be found. This is at the heart of what it means to live with Christ as Lord – to be loyally devoted to Him as Master and King – not merely because you must, but out of desire because He is yours, and even more significantly, you are His.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, historically “lordship” meant “a piece of land belonging to, or under the jurisdiction, of a lord.” In other words, it conveyed ownership. This is a wonderful definition to consider because in the same way, when we receive Christ as our Saviour, we belong to Him. He owns us. Through His death and resurrection, he didn’t merely rescue us from the penalty of sin and leave us to ourselves, but he redeemed us – laying claim to us and buying us back. Not as slaves or property, but adopted as His children, dearly loved, and named as co-heirs with Christ (Romans 8:14-17). We are His, the sheep of His pasture (Psalm 100:3), bought at a price and not our own (1 Corinthians 6:20). And there’s no better place to be; Paul declares everything else, his own achievements and identity, rubbish compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ as his Lord (Phil 3:7-8).
Do you view every aspect of your life as though it is owned by someone else? Or are there aspects of who you are, what you want, love and desire that you have sought to retain for yourself?
To live with Christ as Lord means to cherish and embrace the fact that we belong to Him, every bit of us – heart, soul, mind and strength – and reject any yearning for independence. It means to ignore the deafening dissonance of the world’s command to seek our own needs first, and instead cling tightly to Jesus’ instruction to seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness (Matthew 6:31-33). Not simply as step one in a list of things to do but as the priority we have in all things. No longer looking to fit the Great Commission into our life but instead making every effort to plunge our life into the Great Commission and be carried away in the glorious current of God’s purposes. This is not restrictive or imprisoning – it’s liberating and life giving, for whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for Christ’s sake will find it. (Matthew 16:25). Therefore, let us wholly and joyfully devote ourselves to our Master and King, surrendering everything to His Kingdom purposes and righteous will. And let us proclaim the Glory of God through the testimony of our life displaying Christ as Lord.
Scott Brown is the leader of our Sydney Community. We are currently praying for more labourers to join our team in Sydney, especially with university ministries.
If you would be interested in joining the team or want to know more, please contact us at [email protected]