Wednesday, March 09, 2011



We think of giving up chocolate for Lent. We think of denying ourselves what the flesh craves: a nice vacation on a beach, new clothes, steak and lobster. We think of monks who take vows of poverty. We usually think of self-denial in terms of abstaining from things that affect our senses.

Commenting on Luke 9:23, "If anyone desire to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me," Pastor Bender writes,

Self-denial is central to faith in Christ, and such self-denial is the denial that a person's own good works can in any way save him.
From Lutheran Catechesis -- Catechist (2nd edition)

Self-denial. I deny that I can save myself.
Self-denial. I deny that the reason God prefers me is because I'm such a good little Christian.
Self-denial. I deny that my faith and piety are of myself.

Nothing about chocolate....

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