July 24, 2011

"You Have the Words of Eternal Life...You Are The Holy One of God"

What is Discipleship?

Discipleship can mean many things but according to my reading Jesus’ was distinct from that of His contemporaries. What is of importance is what Jesus thought of discipleship, not what we think it should be. How Jesus does discipleship is that His disciples followed Him. People that were following but uncommitted, unbelieving or following for dubious reasons cannot be necessarily be considered Jesus’ true disciples. Those that come to faith and trusted in Jesus as Messiah and follow His teaching can more properly be considered disciples. Often though, when we hear of Jesus and disciples we think of the twelve. The relationship between Jesus and His immediate disciples was more personal than formal. His was a burden that was actually a blessing:

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30

When dealing with these contexts I would have to say we are dealing with those that follow Jesus’ teaching in faith. Therefore a discipleship of Jesus Christ is anyone who was or is deeply and personally committed to Jesus Christ by faith and who manifests the authority and power of Jesus and continues and extends His work.


Anyone that was willing to commit themselves to the teaching of Jesus and submit themselves to be servants to the Kingdom could and can be a disciple. This is to say anyone that God has chosen to follow Him. A disciple needs to be able to take direction from another that clearly knows better-in this case-God. This is where the difficulties arise especially in today in the American culture. It requires that a person rearrange their priorities to be in the best possible position to emulate Jesus and follow him. A selfish, self-consumed materialistic society is not conducive to this. This leads to the next point.

The Cost of Discipleship?

The cost is dependent on who you ask. In my opinion and according to my understanding…it costs everything. Discipleship in Christ will cost you everything, even you life. You must die to self. When it comes to a Christian it demands that a person make Jesus the most important thing in your life. Jesus must be above all things in a disciples life, even life itself. This thereby requires a person to die daily since a single dying to self one day is only good for that day (or that single decision). In the harshness of some of Jesus' calls to discipleship, such as not waiting until a relative was dead and buried before following Jesus we see something profound. Following Jesus as a disciple is not something to be added to other tasks in our life. We see this every day in the Church around us. Believers trying to do church or add church to the schedule on the weekend so that we get our "God" time in between football, shopping or vacation. Being Christian isn't a case of moonlighting or adding a second job. It is the job for a true believer. It is everything. A deliberate commitment which forces a person to reorder everything around God, not God around them or "things". How many can say they do this? For real? Does God really preface every decision you make during the day?

The Rewards of Discipleship?

We all have a master in this world. The bottom line is that it is either sin or Jesus. We cannot serve both. We are indeed slaves to whatever controls us. People view being a believer or disciple as a form of slave or utter boredom. Say the word Christian and the world's immediate association (besides hypocrite) is Boooooooooring. I can speak from experience that this is anything but true. Being a follower of Jesus is anything but boring. I never know where he will send my family or me next. There is a level of uncertainty involved that one never gets use to. People believe they have control over their lives but this illusion is quickly shattered when something insurmountable enters their life. Something that is bigger than they are. What new paradigm shift is about to enter my family’s or my life is now the normal question not how can I fit God into my life? I know now that there are many things in life too big for even my wife and I combined to handle, but nothing is too big for Christ.

Another reward is that being a disciple, nothing will be expected of us that we are not able to do. We will be equipped as necessary for our tasks. The rewards will be gauged on motivation and heart intent not actions. The reward for work well done in the kingdom? More work. The fields are ripe and the harvesters are few. God needs to utilize His faithful workers efficiently. If we are faithful with what we have been given responsibility over, more will be given for us to handle. In the end the rewards are indicative of the ultimate good of the disciples, other believers and the Kingdom at large (the glory of God). Buck up and carry you portion of the load or move over so I can.

As for you, stop worrying about getting it right or perfect and just go out and do it. If everyone waited until they were perfect to evangelize the world...no one would be doing it. Nothing is getting done with you just sitting around. You don't need to be perfect because the truth is, it isn't you really doing the work of grace, its God through the Holy Spirit Himself. So now go and do what you were commanded. Go out and preach the Gospel - when necessary you can use words too.  

"Go make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age." Matthew 28:19-20

Yes, you! Go! Now! :)


Jim Killebrew said...

I have been reading some of your articles and have come to see you are so straightforward with your comments. You seem so full of knowledge and insight into the Word of God. I am sure you are anointed by God's Spirit to be able to write so forcefully. I appreciate what I have read so far and will continue reading. I have added you to my favorites and will visit often.

If you so desire and have some small amount of time away from your writing and study to visit some of my articles I would appreciate it. My posts may be found at http://www.jimkillebrew.blogspot.com/

If you should read any of my articles there I would appreciate your comments if any.


Jim Killebrew

Andy Pierson said...

You are extraordinarily kind with your comments Jim. I see that you have an extensive background in Psychology and the inner workings of the mind. I have reciprocated and bookmarked you. I look forward to you sharing from your extensive background. Insights from others are not only welcome, I expect them. We are a body of believers, not solitary sentinels. I believe you will have pertinent things to say. So please come back and comment was you see fit. Blessings sir. Here’s to a fruitful relationship in Christ. Andy

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