Presiding Bishop Charles E. Blake: The Denial of Self

Do you want to know the qualities needed for true success in life? Do you want to grow in character? Do you know what it means to deny yourself? Presiding Bishop Charles E. Blake shares his own story of  challenges he faced as a young man, and the humble beginnings of the church in his November 27, 2016 sermon titled, “The Denial of Self.”

“There was one period in Georgia when I was working on my master’s degree. I had to take a full-time job as a janitor in the public schools of Atlanta. Worked 40 hours a week and took home $45 a week. I went to school from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., then I worked from 3 p.m. until midnight, cleaning classrooms in the public schools. I slept from midnight to 7 a.m., then did some homework and other work.

“This was a time of hardship, but later on, more sacrifice and self-denial was required. All West Angeles made my first year as pastor was $12,000 total. The secretary had to be paid. The janitor had to be paid. The bills had to be paid. The musicians had to be paid…all out of that $12,000. But it took all that to make me, and it took all that to prepare me. Now, 47 years later, I can look back and say, ‘It was worth it all.’

“The Church of God In Christ exists in 82 nations of the world.  There are more than 12,000 churches, 250 bishops; it is a world-wide denomination. Look at your neighbor and say, ‘Don’t hate…celebrate! If God is blessing West Angeles, and you bless West Angeles, then God will bless you too.”

-Presiding Bishop Charles E. Blake

 

The Denial of Self

Mark 8:34- Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.

“It was RD Hitchcock who said, ‘Of all sorts of earthly good the price must be self-denial. The lower must be sacrificed for the greater; the coarser must give place to the finer. Every step toward progress is a sacrifice.’”

“The secret of all success is to know how to deny yourself.”

“Men…must deny themselves some present pleasure in order to obtain some future benefit.”

“If the farmer eats or sells all that his ground produces, he’ll have nothing to plant for the next season.”

“The woman who’s about to bear a child has to practice self-denial…She must face much difficulty, much discomfort, and much pain.”

“The investor…must invest his money in areas where the money will grow and bring a financial return.”

“Even the athlete…denies himself of relaxation until after he has obtained the victory. He explains his sacrifice by saying, “I’m training for the contest.”

“The manner of self-denial is something that many young people have great difficulty dealing with and accepting. Everything they want, they want now.”

“It’s unfortunate that some people spend everything they get…Look at your neighbor and say, ‘Lay something aside for the future.’”quote-sacrifice

“Look toward your neighbor and say, ‘Hey Neighbor: most of the great things in life are attained after a period of self-denial.’”

“Many young people don’t have time to go to college. They just want a job now, so they can get some wheels and buy some rags.”

“When you marry, you’ll find yourself needing more than you can make.”

“You find many folk acting like they’re something instead of being something.”

“Listen: clothes don’t make the man woman there are many thing s in life more important than clothes.”

“Here you come looking sharp: all vogue; and also, all vague.”

“You’re dressed up, but your house is falling apart.  You’re dressed up, but you can hardly pay your bills.  You need to reevaluate things, before God turns the tables.”

“You look like a millionaire, but you can’t pay your tithe…I told you I was going to need a praying church!”

“I know how cool it is to be cool; how together it is to be together, but if you don’t build a foundation everything will fall apart.

“Is there anybody in here who knows that God can turn the tables?”

“Young folk: the best things in life are attained after a period of self-denial. I know how cool it is to be cool; how together it is to be together, but if you don’t build a foundation everything will fall apart.”

“Get a good education. Choose a good profession that will be in demand. Prepare yourself for that, and your moment will come.”

“Don’t look for some short cut in life; don’t look for the easy way. The easy way seldom exists.”

“For every good thing accomplished, some bad thing will have to be rejected.”

“Jesus Himself was a pattern of self-denial. The Son of God looked down on our predicament and saw that we were separate from God who is a source of life and source of blessing…He came down to this pitiful earth to die in our places.”

“Jesus did not have to die on the cross, but He let God’s will replace His will. Will you raise your hand and say, ‘Lord, thy will be done?’”

“Death is just a doorway into the presence of almighty God; a doorway into eternity.”

“If you make the sacrifice, if you pay the price, then God will take you higher than you’ve ever gone before.”

“This is what it means to deny yourself: to let God’s will replace your will. To give up all right to yourself…to totally reorient your life toward God.”

“Self-denial is removing ‘self’ from the throne of your life.”

“Look out on the earth: whatever bad thing you see, self-will is responsible for it.”

“The will of God leads us on a path to God; the will of self leads us a way from God and in the opposite direction.”

“We must either deny God and follow self, or deny self and follow God.”

“Why do we fail to witness? Because we’ve not denied ourselves. Why do we fail to pray and praise God like we should? Because we’ve not denied ourselves. Why do we fail to serve God and to give to the work of God? Because we’ve not denied ourselves.”

“There’s nothing wrong with things: you just can’t let them come before God.”

“God has to be first: first in your mind, first in your heart, first in your will.”

“Tell your neighbor, ‘My due season is on the way!’”

SCRIPTURAL REFERENCES – Mark 8:34-36, John 3:16, Romans 10:3, Proverbs 14:12, 2 Timothy 3:12 , Isaiah 40:30-31.


Please CLICK HERE to purchase this entire sermon titled, “Denial of Self”on West Angeles Video on DemandTo purchase this entire service on CD or DVD, please visit the West Angeles Emporium.

Psalmist Nikki Potts ministered to the West Angeles congregation on November 27, 2016. Watch her sermonic selection performance from 2015 at West Angeles COGIC below:

 

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