The gospel of the resurrected “self”

By Kerwin Rana

There’s just something wonderful about early morning prayer and fellowship and last Sunday morning, 29 April, was no different. We had no particular agenda that morning and after seeking the Lord’s face and worshipping Him in the wonderful atmosphere of His presence, we got into an interesting discussion. The discussion became known, in jest, as “the gospel of the resurrected self”. Really what we were on about was just the stark contrast between a biblical view of and the status of “self” versus what gets taught today in Christendom.

The Apostle Paul, in describing his self-sacrificing ministry of the truth of the resurrection, says “I die daily” (1 Corinthians 15:30,31). In describing the principle and ultimate message of his apostleship, he says “God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ” then adds “by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world” (Galatians 6:14).

The Lord Jesus Christ puts “self” in perspective in this rather blunt way when he says “If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow me” (Luke 9:23).

Deny yourself? Deny “self”? This is a diametrically opposed notion to the exalt “self” teachings that we sometimes hear in messages concerning self-esteem, self-love, self-confidence and so forth. Paul presses the “deny self” notion even further when he says “and have no confidence in the flesh” (Philippians 3:3). Why? Because “…I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing” (Romans 7:18).

Just today, I was listening to yet another teaching by a very influential pastor in a very influential church “movement” that was the exact opposite of “deny self”. In fact, to “deny self” (with self being described as the soul and the body) was actually bad for you as you have “felt needs” that must be met in your flesh otherwise you are not “whole” as a believer e.g. affirmation, praise, attention, self-love, etc. that builds self-esteem and self-worth.

How did “self” get resurrected after Christ said deny “self”? Pastor Granvil Alexander does an in depth teaching on the “the Self-Esteem Message” and its dangers.

Just click here to have a read. We would love to hear your views.



4 Responses to “The gospel of the resurrected “self””

  1. Clive says:

    Thanks Kerwin. People avoid telling others to deny themselves because they want their sermons to become popular, which will fill up their churches and well…you do the math.

  2. Granvil Alexander says:

    Great article Kerwin, I appreciate the straightforward points, we need it now more than ever in the church today. Unfortunately, the ‘self’ message is lauded from the hilltops of the church while the ‘cross’ message is silenced by those who are supposed to preach it…. well most of the time.

    • admin says:

      Pastor Granvil, you raised a crucial point the other day when you said that there is an antithesis between “the cross” and “the self”. When you depart from the cross, you will embrace “the self”. It is interesting that the Apostle Paul, when contrasting his walk in the Lord with other contrary walks says that “they are the enemies of the cross…whose God is their belly…who mind earthly things.” (Philippians 3:18,19). These are very strong words of condemnation for those who exalt “self” and “earthly things”. The two unsurprisingly go hand in hand.

Leave a Reply