Surrender Control – BT5
What does it mean to ‘surrender’ control?
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Surrender control is ‘absolute’ by the definition of surrender: “cease to resist; to yield to the power, control, or possession of another; to give up completely.” Jesus says in Matthew 21:44, citing Isaiah 28:14 concerning Himself: “The one who falls on this Stone [of offense and Rock of stumbling] will be broken to pieces, but if it falls on anyone, it will crush him.” Yes, we must surrender control in order to be “broken to pieces” in order to be delivered and healed – that is the exact nature we saw in Surrender Control – BT3 of “repentance for the forgiveness of sins.” But if we continue down our “way that leads to destruction” and continue to resist the Lord, one day that Rock will roll right over us and crush us into dust.
Although the NT doesn’t use the word “surrender” as the OT does for “giving up/over or falling to” as with cities and peoples to Israel, the Greek word hupotasso also translated “submit or subject to” is similarly used in the NT, which means “to arrange, rank, or place under, thus to be subject to.” As we’ve seen in Surrender Control – BT3 the act of public and private confessing “Jesus is Lord (a)” means just that, submitting completely to Jesus as the “master or owner, the person who has absolute ownership rights over you.” James 4:4-8 says, “Do you not know that friendship (g) with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend (g) of the world makes himself an enemy of God. . . . Therefore it says, ‘God opposes (b) the proud (c) but gives unconditional-favor-of-grace to the humble/lowly.’ Therefore, hupotasso submit (d) yourselves to God. Resist the devil (e), and he (e) will flee from you. Draw near (f) to God, and He will draw near to you.” <Notes> a) Kurios: Supreme Master and rightful owner, b) stands firmly against, c) self-sufficient, arrogant, d) hupotasso, e) and his sin, f) a Hebrew idiom for worshipful proseuche conversational-prayer, g) philia, philos: fond friendship – see Fellowship.
Absolute surrender or submission or subjugation is the essence of repentance. Jesus made this clear to everyone, even very religious people: “Unless you repent, you will all likewise perish” (a), and to many hard-working churches like those in Ephesus: “I have this against you: You have abandoned the unconditional-love you had at first [in time]. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do/act the first/foremost doings/works. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless your repent” (b). <Notes> a) Luke 13:3, 5, b) Revelation 2:4-5.
The “light” Christians and churches are to “let shine before others, like a lamp on a stand, so that the world may see your good ‘doings/works’ and give glory to your Father in heaven” (a) sure isn’t OT “works,” but from this Revelation 2:4-5 verse above is clearly the “doings/works’ that are associated with “the unconditional-love that you had at first [in time].” The Lord told me once that He meant both “first in time and first in importance” because: The things we do when we ‘first’ [in time] fall in love with someone aren’t ‘work’ or ‘effort’ at all, but natural ‘doings’ – we can’t wait to listen to every word of theirs, we long to feel their touch, we just want to spend every minute with them, and we want to kiss them – the very meaning of worship. This love fill us up with genuine-life! And when we aren’t with them we love just remembering when we were together, because re-living our love fills us up with even more love and longing to return for more love! Remembering and Returning can be an endless cycle! That intimate fellowship and genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of Jesus that they ‘at first’ had with Him, is what Jesus wanted them to remember and then turn back to through waiting, watching, listening, adoring proseuche conversational-prayer and worship. This intimate relationship is also what is foremost to the Lord! <Notes> a) Matthew 5:14-16.
This is what Jesus is calling many older Christians and churches, like Ephesus was, to go back to or “repent,” because we can see from the progression of NT writings and early Church history that “works” or legalistic Christianity creep in, for “a little leaven (a) leavens the whole lump” (b).
Jesus is always having to call a straying Church back to the “first and foremost ‘doings’ of their first love” – proseuche conversational-prayer and worship for genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of Him through koinonia communing fellowship. If they don’t repent, Jesus will remove them from their chosen-purpose to spread Christ’s light to the world – He will no longer use them to shine His light. This is exactly what Jesus promised earlier to His disciples (c): “As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it presently/ongoingly meno abides-in/remains-connected-to the vine, absolutely in fact neither can you, unless you presently/ongoingly meno abide-in/remain-connected-to Me. I am the Vine; you are the branches. Whoever is routinely/habitually meno abiding-in/remaining-connected-to Me and I in him, it is this one [person] that bears much fruit, for apart/disconnected from Me you can do absolutely in fact nothing. <Notes> a) of the Pharisees and Sadducees, b) Matthew 16:6, 11-12; Mark 8:15; Luke 12:1; 1 Corinthians 5:6; Galatians 5:9, c) John 15:4-5.
As Christian musicians, if we want the Lord to shine His light through us into the world, then we have to be in an intimate, communal fellowship with Him, experiencing a deep love relationship with Him, because that ‘light’ is the unconditional-love of Christ. The only way to do this is through total surrender, subjugation, or submission to Christ being our Lord or Supreme Master and Owner. We need to repent from being “the captain of our own ship” and turn to ‘Jesus as Lord’ and publicly confess this at our water-baptism, but then privately remain connected to Jesus as branches in the Vine if we want to continue to experience His genuine-life-giving unconditional-love flowing into us and through us to the world.
Yes, we must “fall on the Rock of Christ” and be “broken to pieces,” dying to ourselves by “taking up our cross daily,” and taking that lowly, humble place at the foot of Christ’s cross each day. But it is here where we can be continually filled by the ‘light’ of Christ’s unconditional-love. It is here where we can first fall in love and then stay in love. But Christ knows we are human, get distracted by the “cares of this world” and even by the “works of religion,” so He tells us to remember our first love with Him and the things we did at first during that love-relationship, and this will rekindle our love for Him and longing to return to that first love by being together with Him in proseuche conversational-prayer and worship.