We end this study of John Mark Comer’s Live No Lies with a quick look at the epilogue. He also includes an Appendix with a suggestion of creating our own up-to-date version of Evagrius’s ‘monastic handbook for combating demons.’ This is not covered here.
‘Epilogue’ – this has been a book about fighting and yet Jesus taught enemy love and non-violence. It is crucial we understand this is a spiritual war against demonic powers or otherwise we will end up demonizing people. We are called not to pick up a sword but to pick up a cross – and lay down our lives for others. To be a disciple involves dying to self, denying ourselves. We ‘crucify the flesh’, dying to our own desires. It is this death that is the way into life in God’s kingdom. When we refuse to die, we remain open to the enemy. To die in this way means saying no to the self many times each day – each choice involves a death. But to lose our life is to find it in Christ. We really have just two choices – deny Jesus and follow self, or deny self and follow Jesus. It actually ends up costing us more not to follow him. To deny ourselves requires a deep trust in Jesus. We fear we will lose something by denying ourselves. So we have to be willing to surrender to him in obedient faith. We have to trust that he desires our happiness and flourishing. And then we die to live.
- What are some of the ways we can sometimes end up fighting people rather than the powers of evil?
- What areas is God calling you to die to self?
This ends the summary/study of Live No Lies. In it, we have learned more about what it means to be a real disciple of Jesus in our age. The call to be a follower of Jesus is a call into battle. But our fight is not against people. It is against the world, the flesh, and the devil. We have to resist the deceptive ideas that play to our disordered desires and which become normalised in society. We fight these enemies of the soul with spiritual disciplines such as prayer, fasting, biblical meditation, confession, and participation in local church. But ultimately we defeat them by denying ourselves and dying to live true life in his kingdom.
If you haven’t already done so, now try reading the book. You can find it here.
You can find an audio version here.
You can find more books by John Mark Comer here.