Jesus is demanding nothing short of a willingness to die (literally!) for His sake. This is important to realize because language such as “cross bearing” and “self denial” is frequently used among Western Christians to mean they missed the latest episode of The Voice to go to community group or they had to do coffee with “that” person on their day off. But this isn’t what He had in mind.
In summary, Stanley Porter’s Linguistic Analysis of the Greek New Testament is a useful book, but there are significant portions that necessitate a prior understanding of the topics they cover. Additionally, some sections are accessible to those at different levels of knowledge in the field of Greek linguistics, so students would do well to skim the book if they are unsure whether or not they are adequately prepared.
As Christians, there is no place the Lord could send us where his mission does not stand. Therefore, if the mission always stands, then the lack of Great Commission following that we find in our lives must be our fault, not the one who gave the mission. Where do we most often find this failure in following the Great Commission in our lives?
Words have no meaning apart from structure. Thus, the way in which we arrange our words are just as important as the words we use. The Gospel of Matthew illustrates this perfectly. The life and teachings of Jesus are intentionally pieced together in such a way that you are forced to consider who Jesus is and how He has come in fulfillment of Old Testament expectations.
In our culture, we call a group of people who care for one-another a community. Broken families, codependent relationships, and an epidemic of loneliness have created a ravenous hunger for community in this generation. This is what we long for in and outside of the church. Community has become something we consume to meet our needs, not an act of loving others.