9:23 his cross daily. Matthew 16:24 and Mark 8:34 recorded the same challenge from Christ, except that only Luke included the term “daily.” Except for a passing reference in Matthew 10:38, this conversation marks the first explicit reference in the Bible to crucifixion, and it apparently assumes that the disciples were aware of this typically Roman method of execution. In effect, the Lord was telling His disciples (both then and now) that following Him entails a daily willingness to die for Him if need be. “Taking up” the cross refers to the usual requirement that the condemned man haul his own cross to the place of execution. Jesus knew (though the disciples were not yet fully aware) that He would soon be doing this Himself (John 19:16-17).