There is a old song called "Love and Marriage." The song says they "go together like a horse and carriage." Now that's old!
The song also says, "You can't have one without the other." That's not true. You can love people you are not married to, right? Otherwise, you don't love me, and I don't love you.
Now, think of "Lord and Savior," in relation to Jesus. Can you have one without the other? The answer is: No. You cannot have Jesus as Savior, but not have Jesus as Lord.
Thankfully, when I was a new Jesus-follower I had spiritual mentors who showed me the meaning of Savior, and the meaning of Lord, and that I can't have one without the other.
"Savior" represents what Christ has done for me. When it comes to Jesus as my Savior, I have done nothing. He paid it all; I paid nothing.
"Lord" represents what I do for Him. Here, I lay my entire self before Christ as a living sacrifice. The Lordship of Jesus is about discipleship. I position Jesus as Lord of my life, and Lord of all.
"Jesus is Lord" demands my everything. "Jesus is Savior" does not. A disciple is someone who has been rescued by Jesus (Savior), and confesses and follows Him (Lord). "Jesus as Savior" requires a one-time decision. "Jesus as Lord" requires a lifetime of obedience. Jesus as Lord describes the position He holds in our lives, whereas Jesus as Savior describes the work he's done for us.
Every so often, somebody will say something like, “You know, when I was a child I accepted Jesus as my Savior, and that settled whether I was going to heaven or hell, and now I have made Him my Lord.” I am sorry. If he is not my Lord, then he is not my Savior. I don't pick and choose what I want about Jesus. Lordship is not something optional, like extra sauce on a pizza.
I am a disciple of Jesus. Therefore, I follow Jesus as my Lord. But why would I do this? Because, as A. W. Tozer said, "When God lays His hand on a person, they are never the same again." That's me. I was born again. I have never been the same since! Following what Paul wrote in Romans 10:10, my saving declaration was "Jesus is Lord!"
The Lordship of Christ is the end-game of life. God exalted Christ, and gave Him the name above all names: Jesus. Before Jesus, every knee will bow, and every tongue will confess... what? That Jesus Christ is Savior? No. That JESUS CHRIST IS LORD! (Philippians 2:9-11)
As disciples of Christ, I want you to get this right.
Position your lives under the Lordship of Jesus.
Jesus, You are my Lord and my God!
I am one of Your followers.
To follow You as Lord has changed my life.
Today is another adventure of following You.
Where you lead me today, I will follow.
Since You touched me and rescued me, I have never been the same again!
(From my book 31 Letters to the Church on Discipleship.)