An all-out commitment to Christ is the only sure path to becoming all that we can be in life.  It is a chance only fools can afford to lose.  Opportunities in life are of very little use if we neglect to take full advantage of them.  Hence, it is stated that the important thing in life is not opportunities we have but the ones we take full advantage of in the end (Colossians 2:6,7).

When we turn our lives over to Christ to manage, we enter into an unbroken relationship meant to be intimate and complete, a relationship that draws out of us bowed hearts and lives before Him.  He then opens up His heart to welcome us.  In fact, He opens up all His divine fullness of life and love to us in fellowship with the ultimate purpose of making us wholly one with Himself.

So there is a depth of life in Him we cannot realize until we lay all on the altar.  It takes trusting, depending and truly letting go of ourselves upon His person.  Our achievements, religious activities, our sense of self-worth, and other objects demanding our allegiance will no longer be of any appeal to us.  They cease to be of any lasting value to us when we let go of ourselves.  So,

            Turn your eyes upon Jesus.  Look full in His wonderful face.

            And the things of earth will grow strangely dim

            In the light of His glory and grace.  (Helen H. Lemmel)

So we have a timely reminder in John Flavel’s essay Christ Altogether Lovely that:  "The beauty and loveliness of all other things are fading and perishing; but the loveliness of Christ is fresh for all eternity.  The sweetness of the best created thing is a fading flower, if not before, yet at death it must fade away.  Job 4:21: ‘Doth not their excellency which is in them, go away?’  Yes, yes, whether they are the natural excellencies of the body, acquired endowments of the mind, lovely features, graceful qualities, or anything else we find attractive, all these like pleasant flowers are withered, faded, and destroyed by death.  'But Christ is still the same, yesterday, today, and forever' (Hebrews 13:8).”

Therefore, we “count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord…to be found in Him as not having my own righteousness” (Philippians 3:8,9).

In reality we know that all that God bestows on us needs time to become fully our own.  It must be held fast, assimilated and appropriated into our inmost being.  Without this, not even Christ’s giving can make it our own in full experience and enjoyment.  Therefore, an all-out commitment to Christ involves a student’s heart, yielding ourselves to the training of Christ by submitting all things to His will.  Our whole life is allowed to become one with His in a conscious walk.

It is not an act of pulling one’s self up by one’s boot straps.  It is not about human will power and doing.  Our doing and working are but the fruit of Christ’s work in us (Ephesians 2:8-10).  When our soul becomes utterly passive, looking and resting on what Christ is doing, its energies are stirred to their highest activity.  We work most effectively because we know that He works in us (Philippians 3:12).  His mighty energies of love reach out after us to have us and hold us, enabling all the strength of our will to rise to abide in Him (Isaiah 26:12).

He does not ask us to abide with Him but to abide in Him.  He saved us so that we can be all-out committed to His person.  In His hands we receive beauty, are made fruitful, rejoiced over (Isaiah 62:3-5; John 15:1-2,5).  While we wait on Him we become honored (Proverbs 27:18).  We wait on Him out of love for Him because He first loved us (I Corinthians 2:9; Isaiah 64:4).  This we demonstrate through an all-out commitment to His person, surrendered life, a humble and contrite spirit, trembling at the Word (Isaiah 66:2).  

Israel’s history and her relationship with God the Father were failed all-out-commitment to Him.  This was amply demonstrated by her leadership that did not tremble at His Word.  Consequently, the nation and her leadership were only willing to abide with Him as subjects not in Him as His people.  As His subjects they had the option to be loyal or disloyal at will.  The classic example in King Jehoiakim who was disloyal to God and  did not tremble at His Word.  He brought disaster to the nation (Jeremiah 26:21; 36:20-26).  On the other hand, his father, King Josiah, was all-out-committed to God and trembled at His word (II Kings 22:19-20;  II Chronicles 34:31-33).  He became everything Israel had dreamed of a king and brought revival to the land.

An all-out Christian is an overcomer and a giant, a man or a woman who receives a vision from God and refuses to let it go.  Therefore, diligence to your calling is a virtue to be highly prized.  In Christ one must see everything in global terms and from God’s perspective refusing to accept sin.  Willingly we accept personal responsibility to become an agent of change.

All-out commitment is what J. W. Van DeVenter had in mind when he wrote:

            All to Jesus I surrender.  All to Him I freely give.

            I would ever love and trust Him, in His presence daily live. 

                        I surrender all.  I surrender all.

                        All to thee my blessed Savior, I surrender all.

As believers the opportunity to be all we can be is before us.  Seize the moment by an all-out commitment to the person of Christ.  Then from the heart we can sing these lyrics:

All to Jesus I surrender, Lord, I give myself to thee. 

            Fill me with thy love and power.  Let thy blessing fall on me.

Surrender all and prove His goodness.


Dr. T. Cyprian Kia

Feb. 26, 2002

Highland Park, CA

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