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23 Then he said to them all, “If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me. 24For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will save it. 25What does it profit them if they gain the whole world, but lose or forfeit themselves? 26Those who are ashamed of me and of my words, of them the Son of Man will be ashamed when he comes in his glory and the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.


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Lu 9:18-27. Peter's Confession of ChristOur Lord's First Explicit Announcement of His Approaching Death, and Warnings Arising Out of It.

(See on Mt 16:13-28; and Mr 8:34).

24. will save—"Is minded to save," bent on saving. The pith of this maxim depends—as often in such weighty sayings (for example, "Let the dead bury the dead," Mt 8:22)—on the double sense attached to the word "life," a lower and a higher, the natural and the spiritual, temporal and eternal. An entire sacrifice of the lower, or a willingness to make it, is indispensable to the preservation of the higher life; and he who cannot bring himself to surrender the one for the sake of the other shall eventually lose both.

26. ashamed of me, and of my words—The sense of shame is one of the strongest in our nature, one of the social affections founded on our love of reputation, which causes instinctive aversion to what is fitted to lower it, and was given us as a preservative from all that is properly shameful. When one is, in this sense of it, lost to shame, he is nearly past hope (Zec 3:5; Jer 6:15; 3:3). But when Christ and "His words"—Christianity, especially in its more spiritual and uncompromising features—are unpopular, the same instinctive desire to stand well with others begets the temptation to be ashamed of Him, which only the 'expulsive power' of a higher affection can effectually counteract.

Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh, &c.—He will render to that man his own treatment; He will disown him before the most august of all assemblies, and put him to "shame and everlasting contempt" (Da 12:2). "Oh shame, to be put to shame before God, Christ, and angels!" [Bengel].




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