Victoria Osteen, wife of mega church pastor, Joel , may have redefined the purpose and reason Christians worship God. In one of their recent weekly broadcast, Victoria raised eyebrows in the Christian community when she said the following:
“I just want to encourage every one of us to realize when we obey God, we’re not doing it for God—I mean, that’s one way to look at it—we’re doing it for ourselves, because God takes pleasure when we’re happy. That’s the thing that gives Him the greatest joy… So, I want you to know this morning: Just do good for your own self. Do good because God wants you to be happy,” she continued. “When you come to church, when you worship Him, you’re not doing it for God really. You’re doing it for yourself, because that’s what makes God happy. Amen?”
Jesus’ triumphal Entry into Jerusalem:
(Matthew 21:1-11; Mark 11:1-11; Luke 19:29-44; John 12:12-19).
It was only one week before the historic Passover and the city of Jerusalem was crowded with pilgrims who had come there for the annual Passover celebration.
Jesus and His disciples would soon come to Jerusalem to take part in the festivities. They had been travelling for months; connecting with the towns and villages of Palestine. Everywhere Jesus went He preached the Kingdom of God and healed the sick.
As they journey to Jerusalem, Jesus warned His disciples that the time is come for Him to die, but after three days He would rise again.
So, as they came near Jerusalem, Jesus told two of His disciples to go into a nearby village and bring a donkey that would be waiting there. Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey. Crowds of people spread their coats on the ground in front of Him. Some waved branches of palm trees, a sign of victory. The people shouted,
Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord.
In Luke 9:23 Jesus gives us a preview of what it means to follow Him. “… If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and pick up his cross daily and follow me”.
Although taking up your cross involves denying self, the main focus is about following Christ. The cross or burden we carry has to do with the choices we make with our will, the responses we have in our actions, and the attitude we carry in our hearts.
Our cross means that we are putting to death every decision, every response, and every attitude in our life that is not consistent with the love of Jesus Christ.