Advanced Discipleship Training: Letting God Do the Work

(12th article in the Discipleship Series)


This is the 2nd session of our 6 part Advanced Discipleship Training Regimen.  Through these sessions we are establishing a ROUTINE for remaining (mentally) in the Kingdom of God each day.  This is also referred to as Walking in the Spirit.

The daily routine is to:

1.  Pray (in the morning)
2.  Study (in the morning)
3.  Meditate on scripture (throughout your day)
4.  Read Bible (15 minutes in the evening)

These sessions will MIMIC this routine.

1.  We will pray a portion of the the Lord’s Prayer.
2.  We will Study this portion of the prayer.
3.  I will provide scripture references that you can meditate on and/or memorize throughout your week.
4.  I will ask you to read the Bible in the evening for 15 minutes.

The portion of the Lord's prayer we are praying in this session is:

Click graphic to enlarge image

Let's get started.

PRAYER:  Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven (Matthew 6:10).

STUDY:  In this study I’ll discuss how to live the Substitutionary Life of Christ.

What is the Substitutionary Life of Christ?

It’s that Christ EXCHANGED His life for yours.

1.  He took your life of sin...
2.  So that you could have His life of righteousness.
For He (God) made Him (Christ) who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.2 Corinthians 5:21
But how do you LIVE the life of Christ?

The ability to live the life of Christ is conditional, it depends on what you do with sin.  Do you let Christ have your life of sin?

Remember this is a two part arrangement, He takes your life of sin so that you can have His life of righteousness.  If you don’t let Him have your sin, He can’t give you His righteousness.

But how do you let Christ have your sin?

You have to remember that Christ already took your sin upon Himself at the cross.  He dealt with your sin so you don’t have to.  So now if you try to deal with sin through penance, you are circumventing the purpose of the cross.

Let me ask you, what could you do that would appease God more than the death of His Son on the cross?

The Man and a Sack of Potatoes

The story is told of a man walking along a road carrying a sack of potatoes.  A truck comes along and the driver asks the man if he’d like a ride?  The man says, “Sure!”, then he hops onto the back of the truck with the potatoes still on his shoulders.  As they drive along the truck driver notices that the man never takes the potatoes off of his shoulders.  Finally when they arrive at their destination, the truck driver asks the man why he never took the potatoes off of His shoulders?  The man replied, “I kept the potatoes on my shoulders because I really appreciated the ride.  I didn’t want to be a burden by having you carry my load.”

Do you see dear reader, how silly this is?  If God is going to take the burden of sin off our shoulders by dying on the cross, why should we still carry it?  God wants us to take the load of sin off and put it in the truck so we can rest with Him!

God isn’t asking us to make penance.  There isn’t anything that you can do to make God realize that you are SORRY for your sins.  Sorry doesn’t cut it with God.  He paid a much bigger price to ensure that your sins were adequately dealt with.

What God wants now is for you to GROW in Him— He wants to bring heaven to earth in you.  He wants to fill you with love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness and temperance.  You can only grow if you allow Him to wash the residue of sin that still lingers in your mind, will and emotions through interaction with the world.

God Uses Confession

The instrument God uses to do this is CONFESSION (1 John 1:9).  Confession isn’t telling God you are sorry— remember, He overcame the “sorries” at the cross.  Confession is taking the time to understand WHY you sin.

The root of all sin is SELFISHNESS.  The two main expressions of sin are ANGER AND FEAR.

When you sin, ask God to help you find the source of your sin— to explain to you what's going on.  Odds are that selfishness, anger and fear are at the root of it.  Once you isolate the WHY of your sin, with the help of the Holy Spirit, confess it to God.

More than likely if you have taken the time to find the root cause for your sin you will be coming to God with a broken spirit and a contrite heart (Psalm 51:17).  This is what God is looking for and He will use your confession to wash this sin out of your life (1 John 1:9).

Now if you sin the same sin again, don’t become discouraged.  Satan will stop at nothing to accuse you— hypocrite, liar, insincere etc., but don’t buy into it.  Remember you put the sack of potatoes (sin) in the truck with God.  God has already dealt with the penalty for sin.  Right now we are simply trying to wash the stain of sin out of our mind, will and emotions.  We are cooperating with God, through confession, to bring the fruit of heaven to earth in us.  Like the removal of ink from a bad tattoo, it may take many passes.  Don’t give up.  Go back to God, dig even deeper for the root of your sin.  Confess it again.  In time, God will completely remove the stain of sin from your life.  He will accomplish from the inside out what you could never do for yourself through self-effort.  Before you know it, you’ll be living the substitutionary life of Christ.

MEDITATE:  The following scriptures will help you put on the life of Christ.
For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.2 Corinthians 5:21
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.1 John 1:9
The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.Psalm 51:17
Put them on card stock and carry them with you as you go about your business.

Also refer to the Fruit of the Spirit Cards, you can find them here (link).

Make the cards by pasting a scripture and image on the front and back of 4 x 6 card stock.  Laminate them.

READ BIBLE:  At the end of each day, read for 15 minutes in the Chronological Bible.  The reading schedule is provided here (link).  You can start any where, any time.


Bringing heaven to earth is not a mantra, it’s the practical application of bringing the characteristics of Christ in heaven to your polluted mind, will and emotions on earth.  We do that when we deal with sin the Bible way.  Christ died and rose paying the price for your sin.  When your sin appears in TIME remember that God already dealt with it in ETERNITY.  He isn’t requiring you to make penance.  Simply confess it to Him with a contrite heart.  He promises to forgive your sin and cleanse you from all unrighteousness.

Next session I’ll discuss the 3rd portion of the Lord’s Prayer— Give us this day our daily bread.