Are You Following Jesus & His Disciple?
I must ask you a very important question that you must truthfully answer to both only yourself and to the Lord.
Are You Truly Following Jesus & Being His Disciple?
If you think so, then I ask you to listen to what Jesus said in His Word. But if you are not sure…then hear what Jesus says to you so that you will know for sure.
Will you follow Jesus and be His Disciple?
Right now at this very moment, Jesus is calling you to come, repent of your sins, serve and follow Him; and be His Disciple. Will you or will you not? As the cost for either decision one makes is very high and is for all of eternity.
Man's words, his life, his will and his ways can change but Jesus Christ and His Word never changes. He is the same, yesterday, today and forever (Heb. 13:8; Mal. 3:6).
Here are some questions one may have, as many others before you and even in the time when Jesus lived and walked on this earth:
- When Jesus called men and women to follow Him, what did He expect and require of them than as He does today?
- What's the difference between those who profess or say that they're Christians but their lives don't reflect it and those whose lives completely reveal Jesus in all that they do?
- What proves whether a person is a true disciple of Jesus Christ or not?
These are very important questions one may have or ask; and to answer them, you need to read, understand and search out what Jesus said in His Word in regards to one choosing to be a disciple of Jesus Christ.
As a Christian who is a disciple of Jesus, one is to carry out His commands and one of them is the Great Commission which is to "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations" in Matthew 28:19-20, 10:6-8 and Mark 16:15-18.
So it's pretty important, wouldn't you say, that we understand what it is we are to go and do? And wouldn't you also agree that we must first be a disciple before we can make other disciples?
What is a disciple and what does it mean to be one?
The word 'disciple' means "to learn and follow someone; one who believes, embraces and assists in spreading the teachings of another.
A disciple is a follower - a follower is one who does exactly what one is told and lives one's life in accordance to those requirements. A disciple attached himself to another to gain practical or theoretical knowledge by instruction and hands-on experience.
Customarily, disciples left home, all that they had and moved in with their teacher, who provided their food and lodging. The disciples became his servants and were under his total authority.
Churches or denominations have members or disciple, the Pharisees had disciples, and John the Baptist had disciples as well as many other religions or denominations have today.
When Jesus began His public ministry, He, too, looked for disciples so that when His work on this earth was finished and He left to be with the Father again, there would be others who would faithfully carry on the work of the Kingdom of God until His Return.
A disciple and a Christian (one who has repented of their sin & chooses to follow Jesus) are one and the same; it is not based on one's own feelings (Acts 11:26).
A disciple of Jesus is one that gives up himself to be wholly at His will; to learn what He teaches, to believe what He reveals, to do what He commands, to avoid what He forbids, to suffer what is inflicted by or for Him, in expectation of that reward which Jesus has promised. Only such a one is a disciple of Jesus, and he, and none else, is a Christian.
Such as these, who give up themselves to be taught and governed by Christ in all things, were at first called disciples, and afterwards at Antioch they were called Christians; they are two names for the same persons (Acts 11:26).
There is a radical difference between what Jesus says is required to be His disciple in His Word, and what institutional Christianity or man teaches about discipleship in following Jesus.
Jesus does not call us to do church things or good works as man teaches in regards to their own belief and doctrines; but rather Jesus calls us to follow Him and to do His works according to His own will. Indeed, the first thing that Jesus calls us to do is to repent from our sin, turn from our independence and will, and to turn in complete obedience to His will and government of the Kingdom of God over every aspect of our lives.
Failure to do so - to understand and accept His will - it will lead you into deception and spiritual hardness of heart against God.
A disciple is a follower of Christ but Judas was a follower of Him outwardly, not inwardly. Likewise, we have many Christians today who portray and profess that they are following Jesus, in which they do so in appearance outwardly but not inwardly.
So the question to you is, "Are you really a Christian - a disciple of Jesus Christ"?
Again Jesus is calling you to repent of your sin, come and follow Him, and be His Disciple. Will you or will you not? He has given you a choice. It is up to you to choose with a simple answer of "yes" or "no", but it is not a light decision one has to make.
Before you make that decision, Jesus wants you to clearly know all of the details involved in following and serving Him, what it will cost you and what you will receive in return for eternity. Jesus hides nothing from you, in order to persuade or alter your decision either way as it is your choice. He wants you to completely know what you are getting yourself into by the choice you make. Not like people or businesses do in putting the small, fine print in contracts that you sign of which most people don't read.
For example, like before buying any thing, before joining some thing, or before investing into something; you will usually get a detailed overview of the specifications, how much you are going to have to pay and what you are going to receive in return.
We have all counted the cost of various things whether it be items at a store, buying a car or house, getting married, having a baby, joining the military, or numerous other things, but have you counted the cost for being a disciple of Christ?
Have you made a hasty decision to serve and follow Jesus without counting the cost, as others have done in decisions concerning the things of this world?
Being Jesus' disciple, in serving and following Him, will cost you everything including your life! There is only one thing God wants of you, and that is "all of you". It is your unconditional surrender of one's complete self and will to Jesus, which is complete devotion to Him and doing His Will.
What does "Following Jesus" really mean?
Following Jesus is not culturally relevant as many people think, for everything that Jesus teaches us is completely different from what culture and society teaches us.
Why? It is because Jesus is calling each one of us out of the kingdom of this world and into the Kingdom of God. Being a truly born-again Christian, a disciple of Jesus, has never been popular with the sinful world, even with many self-proclaimed Christians whose lives reveal otherwise.
The Lord said in Isaiah 4:1, "And in that day seven women shall take hold of one man, saying, we will eat our own bread, and wear our own apparel: only let us be called by thy name, to take away our reproach."
In reference to this Scripture, the name of the one man is "Jesus".
Just as it was in that day and age, so is it true today that many so-called believers want to say that they are Christians (have the title) and they know Jesus (know of or about Him - not truly having a relationship with Him & are following Him) to make themselves both to feel good and to look righteous to others but continue to do their own things.
'To only just use His Name' or to call yourself a Christian is not being a disciple of Jesus and what He said in His Word in regards to following Him.
Today because of man's teachings and doctrine, and not the whole truth of His Word, many people are deceived in what they believe and put their faith in.
If you are truly following Jesus - you will be conformed to His image (Rom. 8:29), you will be like Him and live according to what He said in His Word - you will be a mirror image of Him - Jesus is your example (1 Pet. 2:21).
Today's Christianity in the USA and the western world is wrapped up in living a good life and feelings. Human feelings have become the standard of interpreting the will of God, not as He says in both His spoken and written Word. This is incredibly wrong!
If feelings are reliable interpreters of reality and God's Will, then why is there such an epidemic of usage of mood altering substances in the USA?
Valium, alcohol, cocaine, and many other milder mood altering substances are used daily because people cannot deal with their feelings.
Defining our relationship with God, understanding His Word and His Will according to our feelings is completely contrary to what God has said in His Word, as the precious Holy Spirit is our Teacher, Guide, Helper, empowers us and so many other things (1 Cor. 2:10; John 14:26, 16:13; 1 John 2:27; Acts 1:8).
Most professing Christians in the USA and the western world claim that they are "saved by grace" and are forgiven, but they say that they cannot be like Jesus, live like Him or do as He has said in His Word because things are different now where they live and the time they live in, as it different than when Jesus was on this earth.
What blatant deceit and untruthfulness this is, as it is completely contrary to what Jesus teaches us in His Word. Everything that God has said in His Word is applies to everyone and for of time.
By taking a portion of Scripture out of context and applying it to one's life does not make the whole truth, as this is were error on our part comes in. We need to read and truly understand all of what Paul wrote in Ephesians 2 about being saved by grace, through faith, and accept the WHOLE of what God said in His Word.
In Ephesians 2:8-10, "For by grace ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath ordained (prepared for us) that we should walk in them."
Indeed according to His Word, we cannot save ourselves. However, God can, and does, through faith in Christ Jesus.
But, God's plan for saving and redeeming us is not just focused upon forgiveness and stop there, as it continues on. His plan for us also is that we become His workmanship, which results in you and I doing His works, which God prepared IN ADVANCE that we walk in His works!
If you are not being obedient and walking in the works that God has prepared for you, then I hope you will seek Him and ask Him to forgive you of your sin of disobedience.
For, if you truly know Jesus and believe in Him, you will desire and have a heart to be like Jesus, to follow Him and to do His Will.
Jesus said in John 14:23-24, "…If a man love Me, he will keep My Words: and My Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. He that loveth Me not keepeth not My sayings…."
Will you continue to put Jesus to shame and live worldly as many others do in doing their own thing, or will you repent, turn to Him and follow Jesus?
Do you truly love Jesus with all of your heart and keep His Words? Or are you so addicted to religion that you will continue to read everything else, listen to everything else that man says and affirm the things that religious people have taught you?
As a disciple of Jesus, you are called to follow the Lord in each and every step of your life in doing ONLY His Will.
But, ironically most professing Christians today have failed to understand the call to follow Jesus and what it will cost them.
They define serving and following Jesus as limited to personal prayer, reading the Bible, attending services or special meetings, giving tithes and offerings, living their lives they want, enjoying the pleasures of the world, and such.
When people hear the phrases "following Jesus" or "complete surrender", they immediately think that they are going to stop living and how awful it will be. In fact, the truth is "they start living"! But what they were thinking is true and they don't realize it.
First, they will stop living the life of pleasing the flesh and doing their own will; instead they will now be living a life of purpose - the purpose that God has planned for them. Secondly, the reason why it seems so awful is the flesh does not want to do without and die, that is why it kicks and screams so loudly.
Surrendering to God and dying to self is a requirement to follow Jesus and to be His Disciple. It is not easy for the flesh and there will always be the temptation of returning to our own self or the ways of sin.
Even Jesus was tempted to not surrender His life to God's plan. But what happened? He resisted and the devil fled from Him. As Christians, we're called to give ourselves to God as a "living sacrifice." A 'sacrifice' is an unselfish, giving up of one's life.
The Lord said in Romans 12:1-2, "…That ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."
He also said in Romans 8:29, "…to be conformed to the image of His Son…"
So, how do we truly present ourselves to God as a living sacrifice?
We must die to self - to the flesh and our own will, each and every day; and do only His Will.
The Christian life consist of a dying to self and to the world - a dying with Christ, a crucifixion of the old man, that the new man may live (Gal. 2:20; 6:14; Col. 2:20; 3:3; Rom. 6:6), so that no longer the carnal man (flesh) lives but Christ lives in and through him (Gal. 2:20; Phil. 1:21), and following Him.
As a Christian, you will have surrendered all to Jesus - your life, your will, and everything else; you are no longer your own but Christ's (1 Cor. 6:19-20).
Jesus said in Mark 8:34, "…Whosoever will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me." (ref: Matt. 16:24; Luke 9:23)
As in that verse, Jesus said if any person will - the word 'will' there means "desire to".
You have a choice in regards to follow Him or not; and if you choose to follow Jesus, you will have to completely surrender yourself to Him.
The word 'surrender' means:
- to give up one's self; to deny oneself & one's will; total abandonment;
- to give up possession of; to yield; to resign; as, to renounce one's claim, right, privilege, or advantage;
- to relinquish possession or control over to another; to lose and forfeit your rights and your will, as even to the Lord.
So the meaning of 'complete surrender' is a giving up of one's will, one's life, and of oneself totally to the Lord…a dying to the flesh - a dying to self.
The word 'sacrifice', in the Bible, is not just giving up something you would rather keep...
Samuel said in 1 Samuel 15:22-23,
"…Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.
For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry…" (vs. 23)
Your obedience to the Lord is all that He wants from you. The Lord is not seeking your things, the things you want to do or to give; He is seeking you - your heart
David wrote in Psalm 51:16-17, "For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: thou delightest not in burnt offering. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise."
David realized that a burnt offering or a sacrifice wasn't going to solve his problem. He knew that his problem was a heart problem.
Many professing Christians make a big show of sacrificing for Jesus Christ in a multitude of ways, such as: "their works, their plans, their donations and such." But the Lord does not want any of these things; all that He only wants is your obedience to Him and His Word.
The Lord doesn't want sacrifices because He has already paid the full price for sin. He wants you to submit to His commands and follow them.
The Lord said in Romans 6:16, "Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness
Obedience to God and His Word leads to righteousness but disobedience to Him is sin that leads to death.
Surrendering to God and dying to self is not merely a once-and-for-all experience. It is a continuous process that one must do each and every moment of every day.
Jesus said in Luke 9:23, "…If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me."
In this verse, there are two things that stand in the path before one can follow Jesus, and those two things are 'self and his cross'
- 'Self' means one's flesh & life, will, interests & desires - in being connected to the things and attractions of this world.
- 'His cross' means self denial, to die to oneself, die to flesh, to crucify or put to death one's self.
Did you notice that the words "follow Me"
come at the end of what Jesus said, it is because you have to deal with and do both of those two things before you can follow Him.
You cannot take a shortcut and go around any of them (not doing them)
or just do one or the other, and claim that you are following Jesus. To follow Jesus, you have do exactly what He said, "If any man will come after Me - (first)
let him deny himself, (second)
take up his cross, (third)
and follow Me."
The reason why there are so few people following Jesus today and their lives being a reflection of Him to all others is because they have not done the first two things that He said but rather claim to be doing the last one.
So if you think that you can follow Jesus without denying yourself and taking up your cross, you are deceiving yourself and not following Him at all.
Denying ourselves and taking up our cross daily is absolutely necessary
to becoming and continuing to be a disciple of Jesus. Unless you deny yourself, it will be impossible for you not to deny the Lord and to not be obedient to His Word.
Have you counted what it will cost you to follow Jesus and what it will cost you to not follow Him?
Look at what Jesus said in His Word:
"He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal." John 12:25
"For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for My sake and the gospel's, the same shall save it. (vs. 35)
For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? (vs. 36)
Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?" (Mark 8:35-37) (ref: Matt. 10:39, 16:25-26; Luke 9:24-25, 17:33)
Jesus clearly tells you in His Word that you will either save or lose your life and soul; and that it is based on the choice that you - and only you can make
- What is your soul worth for eternity - either with Jesus or apart from Him in hell?
- What does it cost you to live your own life as you see fit?
- What does it cost you to follow after the things of this world?
- What does it cost you to be Jesus' disciple and to follow Him?
- Have you truly counted the cost?
- Is the cost too high for you?
- Are you willing to give everything up, including yourself, your life and will, for Jesus?
- Everything that you hold dear to your heart - such as your life, your family, your friends, your way of living, your business, your earthly possessions and such.
You have a serious decision to make; one that will affect you for all eternity, so you will want to choose wisely. If you choose Jesus and to follow Him; you have to give up all - not what you want to - but ALL
Just like the parables that Jesus told in Matthew 13:44-46 of the 'treasure hidden in a field and the pearl of great price' - he sold all that he had to obtain the most prized possession who is Jesus.
We also have an account that was recorded in the Gospels of a person asking Jesus what one must do to inherit eternal life. Here is the account in Luke 18:18-23,
"And a certain ruler asked him, saying, Good Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?
And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou Me good? None is good, save one, that is, God. (vs. 19)
Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Honour thy father and thy mother. (vs. 20)
And he said, All these have I kept from my youth up. (vs. 21)
Now when Jesus heard these things, He said unto him, Yet lackest thou one thing: sell all that thou hast, and distribute unto the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, follow Me. (vs. 22)
And when he heard this, he was very sorrowful: for he was very rich." (vs. 23) (ref: Mark 10:17-22 ; Matt. 19:16-22)
This certain ruler, just as many other people today try and do some
of the things that Jesus has said in His Word…but fell short in doing ALL
that He has said.
They, like the certain ruler, who counted the cost of doing all that Jesus has said and they realize that they cannot or will not do so as the cost for them - their wants, flesh & such - is too great for them that they go away very grieved.
Also in reference to the verse in Luke18:23, we find something more in Mark 10:21:
"Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow Me."
From all of these verses of Scripture, the last thing that Jesus told the ruler was that he was to "come, take up his cross, and follow Him. As Jesus has said there and in other verses in His Word, one has to sell all and take up his cross in order to follow Jesus. There is no other way!
Jesus also said in Matthew 10:38, "And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after Me, is not worthy of Me."
The choice one has to make in either following Jesus or not to follow Him is simple but seems rather hard because of the flesh, as the flesh does not want to give up every thing and die.
Jesus not only taught self-surrender, but He lived it during all of His time on the earth:
- As a child, He subjected Himself to His parents (Luke 2:51),
- Self-surrender marked His baptism and temptation in the wilderness (Mat. 3:13-17; 4:1),
- It is shown in His life of having no earthly possessions and enduring physical hardships (deprivation, privation) (Mat. 4:2-4, 8:20),
- He had come not to do His own will, but only the Father's will (John 4:34; 5:30; 6:38),
- He refuses to use force for His own deliverance (Mat. 26:50-53; John 18:10-11),
- In surrendering His will and life to God's will, in preparation of His death (Mat. 26:39, 42; Mark 14:36; Luke 22:42), and
- To the Father He at last surrendered His spirit (Luke 23:46).
Just as Jesus both taught and lived His life of complete surrender to the Father's will, so too did His Disciples live and so too is it required of all of those that choose to come and follow Jesus today.
As Jesus is our example, even so today, in following Jesus and being His disciple one must also completely surrender himself and his life to the Heavenly Father and to only do His Will, though there be persecution and even physical death for His sake.
This happened to the disciples of Jesus - the apostles, and it could even happen to you.
Remember Jesus has not asked you to do something or to go through something that He did not go through when He walked on this earth as Jesus went before you as an example to you.
Jesus went through many things in His life such as temptation, persecution and suffering, but His greatest test was the night in the Garden of Gethsemane and His subjection to the punishment of men in being obedient to God's Will before He was crucified on the Cross.
You too, as His disciple will go through many trials and testing including persecution and suffering for Jesus in your time on this earth. But the reward that one who follows Jesus receives is tremendous (being without any earthly price or value)
, and for all eternity.
What they receive is more than mere words can describe, as it is eternal life with Jesus. (ref: Matthew 19:27, 29; Mark 10:28-30; Luke 18:28-30; John 12:25-26)
Following Jesus is one's complete devotion
Jesus calls for a level of commitment and loyalty that surpasses any you have for your family and even that which you have for your own life, what you want to do and such. (ref: Luke 14:26)
To follow Jesus and be His disciple will cost you "everything" - you're will, your life and what you wanted to do in this life.
Jesus said that one who was following Him was to take no thought for your life, how you are to live, eat or wear as He will provide all of those things for you.
Even as the Heavenly Father has done in providing everything for Jesus, the plants and animals; so even too will He do so for you today, if you only believe and step out in faith as His Word is true. (ref: Mat. 6:25-34; Luke 12:22-31)
There are three (3) specific and very important things that Jesus said in Luke 14 that if a person who wants to follow Jesus, he must do otherwise he cannot be His disciple.
It does not matter what you might want to think, choose to believe, or even have been taught - it is as He has said in His Word - nothing more or nothing less.
Before you make that choice, Jesus wants you to know and to count what it will cost you to follow Him and be His disciple. This is very important to you, so think about it and what He says in His Word.
These three (3) specific things one must do to be His disciple are:
(1) "If any man come to Me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple." (Luke 14:26)
(2) "And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after Me, cannot be My disciple." (Luke 14:27)
(3) "So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be My disciple." (Luke 14:33)
In reference to Luke 14:26 about 'hate not' and the word 'hate' used in that verse means: "to love less."
So what Jesus is telling us is that your love (affection, devotion)
for Him must be greater than your love for your parents, spouse, children, family and even your own life.
In comparison, your love and devotion to Him would be so great that it would seem to others as though you hated or disliked your own parents, family, your own wife and children and yourself.
Jesus said in Matthew 10:37, 39:
"He that loveth father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me."
"He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for My sake shall find it." (vs. 39)
Jesus also said in John 12:25:
"He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal."
Because of your love and devotion to Jesus, you will freely give them up and go away from them, as if they did not matter to you, without any regret or hesitation to do His will for Christ's sake.
A person will give up a hated thing freely, readily, and gladly; even so must you give up your relations, enjoyments, and life too, not out of hatred to them, but leave them all readily for Jesus and to do His bidding, as if you did hate them.
As you examine yourself, can you truthful say that your love and devotion for Jesus comes before that of even your closest and dearest of family?
In reference to Luke 14:27 about 'doth not bear his cross and come after Me', the word 'cross' used in that verse means: "self denial, to die to oneself, die to flesh, to crucify or put to death one's self."
The cross one must bear symbolizes 'total submission to Jesus, suffering and death to the flesh and to the desires of the things of this world'…it is a serious undertaking.
Jesus said in Matthew 10:38-39, "And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after Me, is not worthy of Me. He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for My sake shall find it."
Jesus also said in John 12:25, "He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal."
Also Jesus said in Luke 9:23, "…If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me."
The word 'deny' means: "deny utterly, that is, disown, abstain; to affirm that one has no acquaintance or connection with something or someone; to forget one's self, lose sight of one's self and one's own interests - "to disown totally"; to forsake, or renounce a thing or someone; not to accept, to reject.
'To denying one self' means: "to repudiating self itself; self-renunciation." It also means "ceasing to consider or to give up your own comforts, ease, pleasure, ego, and benefits".
What it really means is "being done with self; putting self to death".
If you are to truly follow Jesus, you are to die daily to yourself - to selfish ambitions and desires and take up your cross if you are going to have life, follow Jesus and be His disciple. You are to follow Jesus to even physical death if necessary for His sake.
In reference to Luke 14:33 about 'forsaketh not all that he hath'; one must completely separate himself from all of his way of living, relations and worldly possessions in order to be Jesus' disciple and to follow Him.
The word 'forsake' (ie. forsaken, forsaketh) means: "lay aside, to leave, to let (alone, be, go, have), omit, put (send) away, remit, suffer, yield up, depart from, to disregard." It also means: "to renounce; to set apart, separate; to separate one's self, withdraw one's self from anyone or something; to take leave of, bid farewell to, to go away leaving something or someone behind.
Just as Jesus told the young, rich ruler in Luke 18:18-23 that he had "to sell ALL that he had and to give it the poor", not to a charity or church organization, you too must do also if you are going to following Jesus.
This is why Jesus said in Mark 7:13-14 and Luke 10:2 to pray and ask for more labourers, as there are few labourers gathering in the harvest and doing what Jesus has said because the cost is too great for many of them and go and do their own thing.
Jesus gave up all - His family, possessions and life to do the will of the Father, even His Disciples did the same; and you too are to do the same.
In a brief overview, let's look at what some of Jesus' Disciples were doing when He called to them to follow Him.
In Matthew 4:18-22:
- "…Peter and Andrew were casting a net into the sea (vs.18)"
- "…Jesus called them (vs. 19)"
- "…They immediately left their nets and followed Him (vs. 20)"
- "…James and John were in a ship with their father mending their nets and Jesus called them (vs. 21)"
- "…Immediately they left the ship and their father, and followed Him (vs. 22)."
Also in Luke 5:27-28: (ref: Mat. 9:9; Mark 1:16-20, 2:14)
- "…Levi sitting at the receipt of custom: and He said unto him, Follow Me (vs. 27)."
- "And he left all, rose up, and followed Him (vs. 28)."
Than in Luke 5:10-11 Jesus said,
- "…Fear not, from henceforth thou shalt catch men (vs. 10)."
- "And when they had brought their ships to land, they forsook all, and followed Him (vs.11)."
When Jesus called His twelve disciples, immediately without hesitation, they left all and followed Him. (ref: Luke 5:27-28; Mat. 4:20-22; 9:9; Mark 2:14)
Jesus' disciples left - their family, their nets, boats and everything else they had. It cost them tremendously…their fishing business which provided their livelihood and families - literally everything, but it did not matter to them as Jesus was everything to them.
They were so committed to Jesus that no one, not family nor friend; nothing
, not even life meant more to them than Jesus.
His Disciples were not only committed to preaching about Jesus and doing all that He commanded them to do; they were also committed to pleasing Jesus. They didn't care about pleasing men or what they might think of them. All they cared about was pleasing God and doing His will.
This is the same kind of devotion that Jesus wants and requires from all who will heed His call to come and follow Him and be His disciple.
In Luke 9:57-62, Jesus gave three (3) different responses to several people that wanted to follow Him who didn't count the cost and wanted to do so on their own terms.
Here are three (3) responses Jesus gave:
- And it came to pass, that, as they went in the way, a certain man said unto Him, "Lord, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest" (vs. 57).
And Jesus said unto him, "Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay His head" (vs. 58). (ref: Mat. 8:19-20)
Jesus was telling this man who was eager to follow Him that he first needed to count the cost and what was all involved to follow Him before he made his decision.
A follower of Christ needs to understand that being His disciple is not an emotional decision of one moment, but a devoted walk of life with Him.
Jesus said that all the animals and birds had a home but He owned or had no home; He had no attachments to anything. He gave up all - His family, possessions and life to do the will of the Father.
As Jesus is our example, you too must be prepared to give up all to follow Jesus and to do His will. Jesus wanted to make sure that the scribe completely understood what he was saying that he was willing to do; warning him about what all was involved.
What Jesus was asking him (the scribe) but also all of those today is:
Do you know the suffering and hardship in following Me? Do you really know what is the cost of being My disciple? Jesus wants every person to make a commitment having first counted the cost.
A person who only responds to Jesus because of an emotional appeal will not last in times of hardship and suffering. But a person having counted the cost thoroughly and than makes the commitment to follow Jesus and do His will, this person will hold fast to his decision.
- And He said unto another, "Follow me". But he said, "Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father" (vs. 59).
Jesus said unto him, "Let the dead bury their dead: but go thou and preach the kingdom of God" (vs. 60). (ref: Mat. 8:21-22)
If you noticed, Jesus asked this person to follow Him unlike the first one who told the Lord that he would follow Him.
This person then replied to Jesus saying that he had some other things to do, such as bury his father before he would follow Him. I have an obligation to my father. I need to bury him. Back in that day, proper burial was a very important family responsibility.
The person's request seems quite normal and legitimate from the world's point of view but not from the Lord's, as there was more involved than what he actually said. But what he was really wanting, was for Jesus to wait on him to do what he wanted to do and when he was ready; then he would than follow Him and do what He wanted him to.
Jesus response back to him was to let the spiritually dead bury their dead but instead he should go and share the Good News of the Kingdom of God.
To understand Jesus' reply, we have to first understand this matter of our relationship to the obligations of the world and in doing our own things, as to how they conflict and are completely different than His.
It is more likely that this person was asking for permission to remain at home until his father's death and burial, and then follow Jesus.
The problem with this request is that the Lord's work and calling was being put off until another time. And who knows when that 'better time' will be, even if then, would one actually follow through and do it?
Many people who are interested in following Jesus and doing what He has told them, they will give you all kinds of reasons why they cannot do it just yet because of their own plans, social or family obligations as an excuse for not meeting the requirements of following Jesus and being His disciple.
They want to wait for a better time to follow and serve Jesus but only on their own timetable, not His because they have denied self and taken up their cross.
Jesus rejects such excuses because He knows what is in their heart. Excuses are self-justification in which one is trying to hide the truth of one's intentions or actions, and it is lying which is sin according to His Word. (ref: Prov. 6:16-19; Rev. 21:8, 27)
Jesus is saying that nothing is to stand in the way of following Him and nothing is to delay one's immediate response in doing what He says, even when one's duties and obligations conflict with His demands.
The Lord demands complete loyalty and devotion to Him and His will, no matter what it may cost you in the natural.
If this person truly wanted to follow Jesus, he would not have waited until he had fulfilled all his traditional responsibilities and done what he wanted to.
One's obedience to the Lord in serving and following Him is more important than any earthly duty. Jesus and doing His Will always comes first!
- And another also said, "Lord, I will follow thee; but let me first go bid them farewell, which are at home at my house" (vs. 61).
And Jesus said unto him, "No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God" (vs. 62).
Like the previous person, this man too had something he wanted to do 'first.' He wanted to first go and say goodbye to his family. What he was really saying was that he had something more important to do first before he would follow Jesus and do His work.
Jesus saw something wrong with his thinking and what he was devoted to, he was attached to things of this world and they were his number one priority, not Jesus.
As mentioned about the previous person, the second person, nothing is more important in this world than serving and following Jesus. Nothing comes first before the Lord Himself.
Jesus response back to this last person, in verses 61 and 62, was that if any one that chooses to serve and follow Him, and then later on, he looks back at his old way of life and wonders if he or she had made the right choice; and if he has any doubts or regrets in doing so is not worthy of the Kingdom of God.
How is a person truly going to serve and follow Jesus if his eyes are always looking back in the opposite direction of Him?
For example, like plowing a field, driving a car or riding a bike…as soon as you look away…you will begin to drift or turn away instead of going straight ahead, the same is with following Jesus.
If a person is going to follow Jesus, he needs to be completely devoted to Him and keep all of his focus on Him.
Also in other words, this last point that Jesus was speaking about deals with your affections and attraction for the things of the world; when you were living in sin of which one can also again be tempted of in his walk with the Lord.
Jesus is saying that as a follower of Him, one must resist those thoughts and not give in to any temptations of the things in this world or to look back at those things with a longing to have them once again.
If one does, they are like the children of Israel that looked back after being in the wilderness enduring hardships; they were wanting to return back to Egypt (to the world - the pleasures & things of it) to enjoy the good life that they thought they once lived. (Exodus 16:1-3)
They had doubts and regrets in following the Lord because of their looking back and longing for the old ways of life that they once had; and because of it, they died in the wilderness - never entering into the things that He promised them.
The same thing happened to Lot's wife in Genesis 19:1-26, that after the Lord sent two of His angels to save Lot and his family from the destruction of the city of Sodom and Gomorrah with specific instructions that they were not to look back otherwise they would be consumed; but Lot's wife looked back.
Because Lot's wife looked back, she was turned into a pillar of salt; it cost her everything - her own life. She was thinking about the good life she had - the house she had, the friends she had and about all the things that she had accumulated that she did not want to give up and wondered if God really meant what He said.
Just like the children of Israel and Lot's wife, many Christians or disciples of Jesus today have looked back and have decided that the cost was too great for them to continue on with Him until the end. What they apparently don't realize or maybe they do is that the decision that they make is one that last for eternity, even if they have come to believe the lies of the enemy that he has told them.
Any person that chooses to follow Jesus cannot have any regrets, even in looking back at the past and wonder if it was worth it; because they see everyone else that is not following Jesus or claim to be, enjoying the pleasures and things of the world.
Maybe what you and they don't understand or realize is that they are have their reward now in this life but also in the life to come which will be eternal damnation - separation from Jesus & eternal torment (ref: Mat. 6:1-2, 5, 16; Luke 16:24-25).
Another thing that Jesus was speaking about in regards to this last person in Luke 9:61-62, was that he was being double-minded in his ways and he wanted to do his own thing first before answering His call.
'Being double-minded' means one having a divided or conflict of interest and not being sure of just one thing.
If you are always second-guessing something or some one, you will be confused and will always unsure.
When one knows and understands the cost of a decision that he makes, he will be certain and he will not second-guess or have a doubt for one moment. This is being like many of His disciples and others who went back to the things that they were doing before He called them and they followed Jesus no more (John 6:64-68).
They had come to a point, even a moment of temptation, in their walk with Jesus where they changed their mind in regards to the decision that they had made in following Him, they had looked back at how things once were and decided that the cost of following Jesus was too great.
Also what Jesus was saying was that the person had a lack of loyalty to Him, as well as a failure to recognize the urgency of His call for an immediate response to Jesus to follow Him in doing the will of the Father for the advancement of the Kingdom of God.
Even in this person's reply to Jesus, one can plainly see that you cannot serve two different masters nor do two totally different things at the same time. Only one thing can be done at one time and then the other, not both at the same time.
This again proves what Jesus has said in His Word about how a person cannot serve two masters, as he will love the one and hate the other - not both of them at the same time, as both are complete opposite with two different outcomes.
This is why Jesus was saying that one must count the cost - what it will cost him to follow and serve Him or the other.
Many people today that claim to be serving and following Jesus, do the very same thing that this person did in Luke; thinking that they can serve two masters in doing things for both of them at the same time.
In other words, they are doing their own thing while at the same time doing only the things that they want to do or think applies to them, according to what He has said in His Word, and saying that they to themselves and others that they are following Jesus.
In contrary, they are deceiving themselves and even others by what they are doing and saying because it is not what Jesus said in His Word about following Him and what is required to be His disciple.
Jesus repeatedly warns us in His Word about having a clean break from the old ways of life (the old sinful man) of which one is no longer a part of when they were 'born again' in Him.
Jesus is saying that if you want to become My disciple and you are going to keep looking back to the world and the things of the world, then you will never be worthy or capable of being His disciple. When you commit yourself to Jesus, you are to hold fast to the decision that you have made. Because following Jesus and being His disciple requires one's undivided loyalty and complete attention.
It is about commitment and giving up of one's self
In becoming a Christian, which is being a disciple of Jesus, one is to burn his bridges (ties) of the old man (die to self and flesh) - the old way of living in sin; which is to leave all of that behind you with nothing to go back to or to have a desire thereof - only going forward in following Jesus.
In Philippians 3:7-14 Paul said that:
"But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ.
Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, (vs. 8)
And be found in Him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: (vs. 9)
That I may know Him, and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being made conformable unto His death; (vs. 10)
If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead. (vs. 11)
Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. (vs. 12)
Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, (vs. 13)
I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus." (vs. 14)
Just as Paul was saying in Philippians with what he was doing in following Jesus, so we too must we do in forgetting those things which are behind us and going forwards in following Jesus; doing what He has said in regards to His calling.
This means to say that you have made the decision to go forward and serve the Lord, and that you will not look back but ahead with a singular focus and dedication to Jesus.
Paul also said in Philippians 1:21, "For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain."
Paul was saying that to die to self - to the flesh and its desires - one only then gains every thing eternal which is in Jesus and also one is truly living now because of Jesus living in him who is Life, but also in the life to come for eternity.
Paul also went on to say something else in Philippians 3:18-19 that:
"For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: (vs. 18)
Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly (one's wants & desires), and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things." (vs. 19) (ref: Rom. 8:5-8; Jam. 4:4; 1 John 18-19)
What Apostle Paul was saying that hurt him so much was that many people today as it was in his time, who claim and even believe (based on what they have been taught by man & not having read His Word)
that they are following Jesus and His disciple, are in fact according to His Word, they are not doing so but rather serving and following someone else.
In view of God's Word, any one that knows Jesus and is following Him, can clearly see that these people are doing their own thing and living their own life as they see fit; that they are not doing and being what Jesus said in His Word because if they were, their lives would be a reflection of Jesus and what He said.
Being a disciple of Jesus and following Him is not a one-time affair or a temporary, emotional event but rather a journey of a lifetime.
When people express the desire to follow Jesus, the Lord wants to make it clear to them what following Him will entail and what it will cost them.
To be His disciple means that we must redirect our attention and determine our attitude towards the world because following Jesus involves following someone whom the world does not embrace.
It also means that we must redefine our relationship to the obligations and affections of the world and the things thereof. Even family duties are secondary to one's commitment to God.
There has to be a clearly defined break with the ties of the past in all things, even as Jesus said in 2 Corinthians 6:14-18 & 7:1 about going away from those things and being separated from it all completely.
Jesus said in 1 John 2:15-16 that you are not to:
"Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world." (vs. 16)
Jesus also said in James 4:4 that "…Know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? Whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God."
This friendship of the world means "to be associated with, to be like, to be in agreement with; having a connection or ties with.
No matter what one might want to think or believe, you cannot live or be like the world and at the same time be a friend of Jesus and be His disciple, according to what Jesus said in His Word.
This is also why Jesus said in Matthew 6:24 that no one can serve two (2)
masters but only one or the other - not both
Many people responses to what Jesus said to them back then but also as He has said in His Word for us today is "that it is impossible - there is no way this can be so and that cannot be what Jesus is saying to me to do".
This is why Jesus said in 1 Corinthians 1:18, 26-28 & 3:18-19 that you are not to deceive yourself for the understanding and wisdom of this world is foolishness to God.
But what Jesus has said is so, as it is His Word and not only did He live His life on this earth as an example of what He said and was written, but also His disciples and all of those that have chosen to follow Him today.
Jesus says that people like those in Luke 9:57-62 who do not wholeheartedly set their eyes on Him and do the will of God, but look back to other distractions are not worthy or fit for the Kingdom of God.
To follow Jesus is a radical thing and the cost of being His disciple is a high one - it will cost you everything, even the loss of your own life but your reward in following Him is priceless and for all of eternity.
Jesus is saying don't be under any illusion, it's either all or nothing if you want to follow Me!
In the flesh, it is not easy to live in this world with all of its attractions and temptations when one is a disciple of Jesus because one's association with God's kingdom means sharing in Jesus' suffering and rejection.
Jesus gives you the whole picture or details of what the cost is to follow Him and be His disciple because He wants you to know and understand before you make your decision, as there are two different kinds of rewards one will receive even for all eternity - if one chooses to follow Him or not to follow Him.
If one does choose to follow Jesus, they will suffer as Jesus and His disciples did. (ref: Rom. 8:17; 2 Cor. 1:7, 4:17; 2 Tim. 2:12)
You will be:
- mocked or scoffed at
- falsely accused
And you might even be:
- put in jail or prison
- put to death
- suffer physical pain, be hungry & thirsty, kept awake at night, go without food, be cold, and be without clothing
Some or even all of these things will happen to you by the world - the lost, religious people, even your own family and friends. (ref: Mat. 5:10-12; Mark 13:9-13; Luke 10:16, 21:12, 16-17; John 15:18-21, 16:2-4; 2 Cor. 11:23-27)
Not one of these things does any one want to have to go through or endure but they will or could in being a disciple of Jesus.
Jesus said in John 15:20 that "…The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted Me, they will also persecute you…"
Jesus wants you to know that because this has happened to Him, it too will happen to you if you choose to follow Him. Jesus said that a man's enemies would be they of his own household (Mat. 10:16-34-39; John 15:17-20, 23)
When you're a Christian and following Jesus; then the devil (satan)
will turn everybody who is unsaved or not serving the Lord against you, even those you love or are acquainted with.
Anyone who wants (chooses)
to follow Jesus has to understand that being His disciple requires total commitment and devotion to Him, and that many different things will happen to them for doing so. (ref: John 15:19-21, 17:14; Jam. 1:27; 1 John 2:15, 4:4)
Many people today who claim to be following Jesus and go around talking about Jesus, about His love and faith; but they don't want to endure any suffering or partake of His suffering or do what He has said in His Word as the cost is too great.
Again this is a personal choice or decision - one has to make… to die daily…deny oneself - one's will…be sold out for Jesus completely… with no attachments or even thought for one's life, as the cost is everything in order to follow Jesus.
Jesus wants you to know and to count what it will cost you to follow Him and be His disciple before you make that choice, as it is very important. Jesus gave an illustration or example of one counting the cost before building a tower and going to war.
In Luke 14:28-32, Jesus said:
"For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it?
Lest haply, after he hath laid the foundation, and is not able to finish it, all that behold it begin to mock him, (vs. 29)
Saying, This man began to build, and was not able to finish. (vs. 30)
Or what king, going to make war against another king, sitteth not down first, and consulteth whether he be able with ten thousand to meet him that cometh against him with twenty thousand? (vs. 31)
Or else, while the other is yet a great way off, he sendeth an ambassage, and desireth conditions of peace." (vs. 32)
What Jesus was saying here is that those that chose and wanted to do something of worth (like following Jesus)
never counted the cost of completing the project but rather acted on emotions or feelings; and failed to finish thus being ridiculed and mocked. The same applies for each one of us that wishes to choose or to follow Jesus but in the end does not do so or fails to finish to the end.
The life of discipleship and following Jesus begins with repenting of your sins then self-renunciation and forsaking all.
Just as Jesus said in Luke 9:23, "…If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me."
In order to follow Jesus and be His disciple, you must do those three things. The choice is yours…either you choose to do them and be His disciple, or you don't do them and you are not His disciple.
It is only His way as Jesus said in His Word and there is no other way. All of these requirements are 'absolutely essential'
for any one wanting to be His disciple; they are "giving up all, deny self, taking up one's cross and following Him".
Just as Jesus' Disciples did, He requires the same today for those who desire "to come after Him or follow Him" and it is not just for some small elite group of believers but for each person who has repented of their sin.
Jesus, by His Spirit, is standing before you today, calling to you - to come and to follow Him. Jesus wants an immediate answer from you.
- What is your response to His invitation?
- He is waiting on your answer and your decision - what is it going to be?
- Are you willing to lay down your life and take up your cross and follow Jesus?
- Or are you going to be like one those when they were called, they gave an excuse for not following Jesus? (* also ref: Mark 10:17-22; Luke 14:16-24, 16:9, 18:18-23)
Let's look at several different accounts that Jesus gave to us in His Word concerning those that choose not to hearken to His call but rather go on doing their own thing and what the consequences are for not being obedient.
In Matthew 22:2-14:
"The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son,
And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come. (vs. 3)
Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage. (vs. 4)
But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise: (vs. 5)
And the remnant took his servants, and entreated them spitefully, and slew them. (vs. 6)
But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city. (vs. 7)
Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy. (vs. 8)
Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage. (vs. 9)
So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered together all as many as they found, both bad and good: and the wedding was furnished with guests. (vs. 10)
And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment: (vs. 11)
And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment*? And he was speechless. (vs. 12) *Note: Not having a wedding garment - is being filthy with the things of this world and sin - wasn't cleansed by the blood of Jesus - Isa. 61:10, 64:6; Zec. 3:3-5; Rev. 7:14
Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. (vs. 13)
For many are called, but few are chosen." (vs. 14)
In Luke 9:59 & 61:
"And He said unto another, Follow me. But he said, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father (vs. 59).
And another also said, Lord, I will follow thee; but let me first go bid them farewell, which are at home at my house (vs. 61)."
In Luke 14:16-24:
"…A certain man made a great supper, and bade many:
And sent his servant at supper time to say to them that were bidden, Come; for all things are now ready. (vs. 17)
And they all with one consent began to make excuse. The first said unto him, I have bought a piece of ground, and I must needs go and see it: I pray thee have me excused. (vs. 18)
And another said, I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to prove them: I pray thee have me excused. (vs. 19)
And another said, I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come. (vs. 20)
So that servant came, and shewed his lord these things. Then the master of the house being angry said to his servant, Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in hither the poor, and the maimed, and the halt, and the blind. (vs. 21)
And the servant said, Lord, it is done as thou hast commanded, and yet there is room. (vs. 22)
And the lord said unto the servant, Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house (not a church building - but where Jesus dwells in Heaven) may be filled. (vs. 23)
For I say unto you, That none of those men which were bidden shall taste of my supper." (vs. 24)
Just as all of these different people in the time of Jesus had an excuse for not coming at the Lord calling, so to do many people today, but yet they call themselves Christians and that they are following Jesus.
They say: "I have bills to pay, let me pay off my house or car first, let me retire first than I will, let me finish my schooling first and many other such things."
And after all of these excuses that they give, they then say that they will go and do the things that He was calling them to do. The truth is, most all of them never repent, go and do what Jesus told them even after they finish what it was that they were doing when He first called them.
They are like the seven (7) women that the Lord made mention of in Isaiah 4:1 which says:
"And in that day seven women shall take hold of one man (one man being Jesus), saying, We will eat our own bread, and wear our own apparel: only let us be called by thy name, to take away our reproach."
These women wanted to have the recognition of others and to justify themselves in what they were doing, to ease their conscience of the conviction of the Holy Spirit; but in reality, they only did this to benefit themselves to continue to do what they want to do.
This is the same belief that people today have of doing their own things in their way and then when they are ready or want to, they will go and follow Jesus.
This is completely contrary to God's Word and what Jesus taught, even as He lived His life as an example to all. Jesus' disciples immediately quit what they were doing and left everything to answer His call and to follow Him, just as each one of us must do.
Jesus said in Matthew 21:28-32:
"But what think ye? A certain man had two sons; and he came to the first, and said, Son, go work to day in my vineyard.
He answered and said, I will not: but afterward he repented, and went. (vs. 29)
And he came to the second, and said likewise. And he answered and said, I go, sir: and went not. (vs. 30)
Whether of them twain did the will of his father? They say unto him, The first. Jesus saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That the publicans and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you. (vs. 31)
For John came unto you in the way of righteousness, and ye believed him not: but the publicans and the harlots believed him: and ye, when ye had seen it, repented not afterward, that ye might believe him. (vs. 32)"
Here we see that those that made a decision not follow Jesus and didn't do what He was telling them, they then later repent and actually go and do it; but then you have those that say that they will do all that Jesus has asked but then they don't do anything at all.
This is a very dangerous place for one to be in…as the outcome according to His Word speaks volumes and the results thereof.
Jesus said in Matthew 7:13-14, 21-23:
"Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: (vs. 13)
Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. (vs. 14)
Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of My Father which is in heaven. (vs. 21)
Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in Thy Name done many wonderful works? (vs. 22)
And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you (you had no relationship with Him - you only knew about Him and of Him): depart from Me, ye that work iniquity." (vs. 23)
Jesus also said in Luke 13:24-28:
"Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able (they choose not to follow Jesus because the cost is too great for them). (vs. 24)
When once the master of the house is risen up, and hath shut to the door, and ye begin to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord, open unto us; and He shall answer and say unto you, I know you not whence ye are (again having no relationship with Jesus): (vs. 25)
Then shall ye begin to say, We have eaten and drunk in Thy presence, and thou hast taught in our streets. (vs. 26)
But He shall say, I tell you, I know you not whence ye are; depart from Me, all ye workers of iniquity. (vs. 27)
There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when ye shall see Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and all the prophets, in the kingdom of God, and you yourselves thrust out." (vs. 28)
From what Jesus said in those passages of Scripture, people who claim to be following Jesus and do not know Him will make all kinds of excuses to justify what and why they are doing the things they are, that they are doing them only for Him.
Jesus says that He does not know them even though it appears to others that they do because of what they are doing. Jesus looks on the inside; He looks at the heart…not the outside as people do.
In Luke 16:15 Jesus said, "…Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God."
Also in 1 Samuel 16:7, "But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart." (ref: 1 Chron. 28:9)
It is not what we say to others or even to ourselves, but what only matters is that you know Jesus and that you are following Him.
You can say to all of the people around you and even one day (Judgment Day)
standing before Jesus that you have:
- went to church or fellowshipped with others, and have felt the presence and power of God at one time or the other,
- read and listen to His Word,
- went out at home, school, work and/or abroad - preached about Jesus and what He has done for them,
- healed the sick,
- casted out devils,
- prophesied in His Name,
- done many miracles and mighty works in His Name
Doing all of these things is not good enough, it will not save you and it does not make you a Christian in doing them; only knowing and having a relationship with Jesus
will save you on that Great Day, according to all that Jesus has said in His Word.
There are many people today that say they are Christians because they have said a prayer and do those things listed above to ease their minds of the conviction of the Holy Spirit and to prove to others that they are because of what they are doing.
Jesus says in His Word that they are not who they think or say that they are because they do not know Him and have a relationship with Him. There is a big difference in personally knowing Jesus
and just knowing about Him
Many people around the world know of or about Jesus but they do not have a relationship with Him.
To know of or about someone is like a person who knows who the President of USA is or the governor of the state you live in is but they don't have any kind of personal relationship with him.
To truly know someone is like a person that is married. They have a close relationship with each other and they know each other very well because they spend a lot of time together talking and doing things. Jesus makes it very clear in His Word that this is the kind of relationship we are to have with Him.
If you do not have a close and personal relationship with Jesus, which is, to be in constant communion with Him, doing what all He says and have given up all - then you have nothing at all and you are lost.
It does not matter what you thought, chose to believe, been taught or what the enemy has tried to tell you…as those things are not so and one is deceived. You can even say that you are following the Lord and serving Him…and if so…than why are you not doing what He said both written and spoken?
Jesus said in Luke 6:46: "And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?"
Also Jesus said in Matthew 7:21: "Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of My Father which is in heaven."
Who is your Lord - the god of this world or Jesus? The one you choose to follow - is the one that you are serving - it is he that is your Lord.
You can say that everything in the Bible does not apply to you, only just parts of it as the other things were just for that time…it was for that certain person or nation.
Well you are completely wrong, you are being ignorant and deceiving yourself because ALL of it is for everyone today. The Lord said in 2 Timothy 3:16-17 that:
"All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works."
Jesus clearly tells us in His Word that the Scriptures are to guide us in all areas of life, telling us what is sin and what is not, and correcting us to lead a life after God's Will; that is to be holy as He is Holy.
Therefore, to say that the entire Bible (all of it)
does not apply to you and everyone else today, would be calling God a liar of which He is not.
Jesus said in Titus 1:16, "They profess that they know God; but in works they deny Him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate." (ref: Eze. 33:31)
He also said in Matthew 15:7-9, "Ye hyprocrites, well Esaias prophesy of you, saying, This people draweth nigh unto Me with their mouth, and honoureth Me with their lips; but their heart is far from Me. But in vain they do worship Me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men." (ref: Mark 7:6-7; Isa. 29:13)
Lip service and good works might impress others but Jesus disregards it because He sees the heart. This is being a hypocrite - a religious person just like the Pharisees and Sadducees (the sad-to-see-you kind of people)
Jesus clearly states in His Word that just because a person says "that they know Jesus, and that they are serving and following Him based on some of the things they are doing" - Jesus says that what they say is not true and their heart is far from Him.
The denial, the betrayal and the selling out (like Judas & the other disciples)
of Jesus is common among professing Christians. This occurs because many professing Christians have not repented of their sins, remain in the flesh, never died to self, haven't taken up their cross and perhaps never ever knew Jesus or have fallen away from (left)
In Matthew 13:3-23, Jesus gave a parable of the sower and the seed; and it shows 4 types of people who hear the gospel (Good News - Jesus).
Person #1: He is the one that hears the Word, and does not understand it, and the wicked one snatches away what was sown into his heart. This is he who received the seed (Word of God) by the wayside. (vs. 19)
Person #2: This person who receives the Word (of eternal life) with joy, but he endures only for a little while. When persecution and tribulation come - immediately he stumbles (back into sin and the old life). (vs. 20-21)
Person #3: This person understands the Gospel, receives it with joy and believes, and endures some trials while still believing. But the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the Word, and he becomes unfruitful. (vs. 22)
Person #4: He is one that believes and overcomes all these things and bears good fruit, in obedience in serving God. (vs. 23)
The first person was never saved, they never understood and believed. The other two people were true believers who fell away from the faith because of trials, the cares of this world and chasing after riches - etc.
The fourth and last person knew Jesus and followed Him until the end. Which one of these people are you?
Are you salty? Are people around you being affected?
If you are truly following Jesus and His disciple, then Jesus said in His Word that you are the salt of the earth, as He is the preserver and giver of life, who gives meaning and salvation to all.
Jesus gives an example of His disciples in an illustration of them being like salt to the world in the Gospels.
Salt was a highly-valued commodity in the ancient world, even in the days of Christ and because it was so valuable it was used for money. It served for a variety of uses and purposes; as it was used as a purifier and as a preserver of food but it was also used in the seasoning food for flavor.
Jesus said in Matthew 5:13 that, "Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men." (Also: Mat. 5:14-16)
Also in Luke 14:34-35 He said, "Salt is good: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be seasoned? It is neither fit for the land, nor yet for the dunghill; but men cast it out. He that hath ears to hear, let him hear." (ref: Mark 9:49-50)
How can salt become tasteless? How can salt lose its saltiness or flavor anything when it is tasteless?
It is by being diluted with other elements or impurities.
How do Christians lose their salty quality?
One of the ways this happens is when they dilute their desire and commitment to follow Jesus with distractions, things of the world and sin.
One may also ask, "Why did Jesus say that His disciples who are the salt - the light of the earth but then also say the other thing about salt which is no longer good?"
In regards to what Jesus was saying about 'salt losing its flavor', if you turn away from following Him or fall away from Jesus; one's sin puts you out of alignment with God and that you are no longer have any kind of value for Him, His Kingdom or even for the kingdom of this world as they are mocked and thrown to the side or away from them.
Thus clarifying what Jesus said about being free from sin and one being in complete obedience to Him; Jesus said in Galatians 5:9 that, "A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump." (ref: 1 Cor. 5:6-8)
Just as Jesus said in His Word, one excuse or one little lie - one sin - is a sin that puts you out of alignment with God and makes one impure.
Like impurities, such as clay, sand and other things which makes salt useless - to lose its taste and flavor; so too does "SIN
," in regards to Jesus and that which is pure. These impurities (sin)
make men or women useless and of no good to Jesus or to the Kingdom of God.
The theme is still the same - in what Jesus has said in His Word and it has not changed, as it is still the same today that His disciples are to be completely like Him otherwise they are no good.
Just as Jesus has said in Matthew 5:13-16; we, who are His disciples, of whom He has called and has sent out into the world - to the lost, we are to be a seasoning (a beckoning to Him)
and a light for His Kingdom.
Salt make one thirsty…in order to quench one's thirst, they must drink water - and this water that truly quenches one's thirst is none other then Jesus…who is the water of Life in John 4:14.
Then one may ask the following questions:
- Why then are there so few people (those truly following Jesus & being His disciple) being obedient to Jesus' commands in going and doing what He has said in His Word?
- How can these very few people affect such a large region of the world for Jesus?
Just as a handful or measure of salt disperses its taste and flavor throughout food, so does the teaching of the Word of God disperses far and wide, penetrating and reaching the hearts of men (Acts 2:37)
Why do you think that Jesus said and ask of us today in Matthew 9:37-38 and also in Luke 10:2 …to pray and ask for the Lord to send more labourers…it is because very few who are called go and do that which He has said, as many turn from Him (just like the seventy, the multitude and all those He has called today)
and go do their own thing.
They, as many others who truly have the counted the cost of following Jesus in paying the price to do that which He requires and demands, find it is too great of a cost for them thus turn away from following Him.
Those, who profess or call themselves Christians because of what they think or even justify in what they are doing for the Lord, is not what it may appear if they don't truly know Jesus and they are not being completely obedient to His Word. They are being like salt with no flavor.
These people then get labeled by others, including the lost, as fakes and flakes - as they can see that these professing Christians are not who they say that they are, as their lives and actions say otherwise. Other then the name they call themselves, they live like the world (the lost)
in doing all of the same things and pursuing all of the same things, but they also look like them instead of looking and being like Jesus.
They are just like salt that has lost is saltiness and has no taste, these people are disregarded by the world (the lost)
with such a bad distaste and even they will be told so.
There is nothing more useless than salt that is not salty. It is only fit to be thrown out and discarded. This is the picture of the person who says that they are going to follow Jesus but who does not follow through on their commitment.
The true test of salt is not whether it resides in a saltshaker looking like salt, but whether or not it is salty. The same applies to each one of us that profess that they are Christians and following Him, but they don't do all of the things that Jesus has commanded in His Word; in fact most of them never do anything but religious things.
If this is you - in how you have been living, then you need to repent, turn away from those things, follow Jesus and be obedient His Word. (ref: 2 Chron. 7:14; Eze. 14:6, 18:30; Acts 3:19)
Do you truly love Jesus more than anything?
Besides all that Jesus had taught, lived and said in His Word, Jesus also said that he (which is all of those that choose to follow Him) that doeth the work and will of My Father…is His disciple and loves Him.
Plainly, Jesus said in John 5:30, "I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent Me."
Then Jesus said in John 14:21, 23-24:
"He that hath My commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth Me: and he that loveth Me shall be loved of My Father, and I will love him, and will manifest Myself to him. (vs. 21)
...If a man love Me, he will keep My words: and My Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. (vs. 23)
He that loveth Me not keepeth not My sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father's which sent Me." (vs. 24)
In these verses of Scripture, Jesus clearly says that if one loves Him, he will keep His commandments; which is being obedient to Him and His Word. Otherwise, Jesus says one does not love Him because he does not keep His Word thus he is disobedient which is sin.
Right now, examine yourself and see where you stand with the Lord according to His Word.
So do you truly love Jesus? Are you being obedient to His Word and keeping all of His commandments (not just the 10 Commandments but everything else that He has commanded us)
Then in 1 John 2:15-17 He said,
"Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. (vs. 15)
For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. (vs. 16)
And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever." (vs. 17)
This is very important to each one of us that you understand what Jesus said. He said that if anyone love the world or the things of the world, that the love of God is not in him and that only he that doeth the will of God abideth forever…no one else.
The Lord has commanded His people that they are to keep His word and to love Him with all of their being - their heart, mind, soul and strength. (ref: mark 12:28-33; Deut. 11:1; Mat. 22:36-40; Luke 10:27-28)
So have you been loving the things of the world and pursuing them, instead of loving Jesus and doing His Will?
Do you truly know Jesus - Who is the Word and are you doing what Jesus has said?
Let us examine further what else Jesus said in regards to all of this in His Word.
The Lord said in James 1:8 that "A double minded man is unstable in all his ways."
To be 'double minded' means: "undecided, to be unsure; to waver, to sway back and forth between two opinions or beliefs; someone who is divided in his interests or loyalties."
This is a very dangerous place for one to be in, as one's attention and focus is divided. This is like one who desires to serve and follow Jesus, but also he wants to have and enjoy the pleasures and things of the world at the same time.
According to what Jesus said in Matthew 6:24, no person can serve or follow two (2) different masters (God & mammon) at the same time as he will love one and hate the other.
Too many people today profess to be Christians, but they pursue the things of the world and live like the world; and then on Sundays or at other times do the religious rituals to give them a false hope and peace of mind that they both know Jesus and are being obedient to His Word.
Jesus said in James 1:22-24,
"But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. (Only hearing God's Word and not being obedient in doing it - is sin because of disobedience)
For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: (vs. 23)
For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was." (vs. 24)
Jesus clearly show us in His Word that a person that is unsure of himself and what he believes in will forget who he was because he never knew and understood who he was.
And continuing on in James 2:14, 17-26, He said:
"What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him? (vs. 14)
Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. (vs. 17)
Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. (vs. 18)
Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble. (vs. 19)
But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? (vs. 20)
Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? (vs. 21)
Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? (vs. 22)
And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. (vs. 23)
Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only (only believe & doing nothing). (vs. 24)
Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way? (vs. 25)
For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also." (vs. 26)
Jesus than sum it all up with what He said in 1 John 3:18, "…Let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed (action) and in truth."
Faith here is not just a belief in one's heart or mind but actually in one's "action". If one truly believes some thing not just what he says - he will act on that belief…because he knows that it will really happen and be so in one acting upon it.
Jesus further clarifies all that He has been saying with what He says in 1 John 2:3-4:
"And hereby we do know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments.
He that saith, I know Him (Jesus), and keepeth not His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him." (vs. 4)
Then in Matthew 12:30, Jesus said: "He that is not with Me is against Me;
and he that gathereth not with Me scattereth abroad." (ref: Luk. 11:23; Mark 9:40)
Following Jesus and the Kingdom of God is not just talking about it to others but rather acting upon what Jesus said, reveals who you are and manifests His Kingdom on the earth.
For far too long, there have been too many people profess that they are Christians and following Jesus, but neither their actions nor their lives reflect it in accordance to what Jesus has said in His Word. For if they truly believe and know Jesus; their actions and lives would be completely different than what they are saying, doing and how they are living, and people would see it and know otherwise.
Have you completely surrendered your self and life to Jesus? Have you been completely obedient to ALL that Jesus has said in His Word?
There cannot be ANY compromise or partiality in your surrendering to the Lord, in doing what He has said and in following Jesus.
Abba Father is not partial in anything that He says, does or has done - Everything is complete - He is ALL and ALL to all! (ref: John 1:3; Col. 1:16-20; 2:9-10; Prov. 6:4; Isa. 44:24; 45:7)
Jesus gave ALL that you might have all (salvation, healing, deliverance, eternal life & so much more) and be all in Him.
Jesus did not die for just one sinner or for a few - He died for all. When He paid the price for your sins - He did not just pay the price for a few or some of them - He paid the price for all of them.
Why did Jesus say in Mark 12:30 that you are to love the Lord your God with ALL your heart, soul, mind and strength? (ref: Deut. 11:3; 13:3; Josh. 22:5; Matt. 22:37; Mark 12:30, 33; Luke 10:27)
It is because Jesus loved each one of us so much that He gave up ALL of Himself for you, and in return He wants ALL of you and He requires from you to be loved by every part of your being! A little bit or part of oneself will not suffice or be enough for the Lord.
With God, it is ALL or not at all…Either you are serving & following the Lord - or you are not at all. There is no compromise! Jesus requires ALL of any and every one that choose Him and to follow Him; in being completely abandoned to Him and His Will.
When Jesus first called His twelve (12) disciples, they did not just give ten (10) percent of themselves or what they had; not doing or being like most professing Christians do today with just tithes and offerings instead of what Jesus has said in His Word. Jesus' Disciples gave 100 percent - giving up all and giving themselves completely to Him and His bidding; they did exactly as He had command them according to His Word.
Now, just as Jesus has said in Luke 22:35, to His Disciples; He is saying the same to you: "…When I sent you without purse, and script, and shoes, lack ye any thing? And they said, Nothing."
Jesus said in Matthew 6:25, "Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?" (further ref: Mark 6:25-34; Luke 12:22-32)
Why did Jesus say this?
For the moment, without getting into all of what Jesus said in His Word in regards to this, it is because all of these things are a distraction that both the fleshy, carnal man and the enemy uses to keep one's person dependent upon only himself and looking else where other then to Abba Father who does what He has said and promised.
Also it is because He will provide for you, just as He did for Jesus when He was here on this earth. This is a guarantee!
The twelve disciples that Jesus first called were just the beginning of His disciples. Jesus wants others to follow Him, to be His disciples; just as He wants you to be, but you have to make that decision and only you alone.
When Jesus said in Mark 8:34 that "If any one will or chooses to come after Me," this phrase implies a continuous or habitual action on one's part. Jesus wasn't talking about a casual walk or life style but rather a committed life to Him and His Will.
What does Jesus say in His Word that proves or shows that a person is a true disciple of Jesus Christ?
Besides all of the things mentioned of earlier, here is what Jesus also said in His Word about the different things that would show that one is His disciple.
Jesus said in John 13:34-35,
"A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another."
To what extent did Jesus love us? He loved each one of us so much that Jesus gave up everything that He had and was in Heaven including His own life. So too must we also love others as He loved us. As you begin to grasp this in understanding His love, you too will love everyone else because of the abundance of His love that you have experienced and know.
The other thing that Jesus made mention of in regards to one being His disciple was in John 8:31. Jesus said: "…If ye continue in My Word, then are ye My disciples indeed."
The word 'continue' in this verse of Scripture means "to remain, stay, to keep continually or live" (in a given place, state, relation, or expectancy)
. It also means to 'abide', keep this in mind.
What Jesus was and is saying is that if you keep or continue in His teaching then it proves you're a genuine disciple.
The validation of true discipleship - being His disciple - is to not depart from the Word of God, but to continue in it, to keep on believing and doing it; and to keep on following Jesus as He is the Living Word.
My wonderful Jesus then continues on in John 15:1-8 saying,
"I am the true vine, and My Father is the husbandman. (vs. 1)
Every branch in Me that beareth not fruit He taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, He purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit. (vs. 2)
Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you. (vs. 3)
Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in Me. (vs. 4)
I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in Me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without Me ye can do nothing. (vs. 5)
If a man abide not in Me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. (vs. 6)
If ye abide in Me, and My Words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. (vs. 7)
Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be My disciples." (vs. 8)
In this passage of Scripture, Jesus is the vine (the source of all life)
and you and I are the branches of whom we must be plugged into or connected to Him in order to bear fruit that is good and full of life that He will be glorified.
There is always two (2) kinds of fruit (corrupt or living fruit)
in this life that one can bring forth, but in short, the only fruit that Jesus is interested in is - the fruit that is life and of Him, as everything else is corrupt and of no value to Him.
I ask you to please reread this portion of Scripture and meditate upon it, and listen to what He is saying to you. As this is very important, this is why Jesus taught about it and it is recorded in His Word for each one of us today.
Jesus taught and explains very clearly what it means to abide in Him bringing forth good fruit and what happens if you don't.
At this very moment, one needs to examine his or her life and see where they stand with Jesus; and what kind of fruit that you are striving for or producing from your labour. Is it fruit from the flesh - the carnal man or is it truly of Jesus whom it brings all the glory and honour that is due to Him; in which will bring forth more fruit?
In brief, the true Biblical principles of following Jesus & being His disciple are:
- The call of a disciple is to "forsake & give up all, follow Jesus, become like Jesus, and join Him in His work that all may hear and bring Him glory.
- The cost of being a disciple is to deny yourself, die to self, and follow Jesus continually as the habit of your life. It is the total commitment of oneself to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, taking precedence over your wants, will and needs, over other relationships and over all material things.
- The commitment of a true disciple is to not depart from the Word of God, to abide in it and in Jesus continually, to stay the course, to finish to the end.
- True Christianity is discipleship - and a disciple of Jesus is a Christian.
Only those people that are like (look, speak & be like Him in all that they do)
Jesus and do His Will, they will turn the world right side up (Acts 17:6)
When Jesus walked on this earth, He turned the world - the life of man - right side up. He made a way for all sinners to be redeemed when He died on the Cross, putting a repented man back in alignment with God as it once was before sin entered the world.
Are you truly a disciple of Jesus Christ?
- Have you heard Jesus' call, counted the cost, denied yourself, died to self, and are you continuing daily to follow Jesus?
- Are you willing to pay the price to become His disciple?
- Will you renounce all and commit yourself totally to Him - to do only His Will?
- Will you put Him first - above all others ... and above yourself?
- Is there anything that is more important to you then Jesus Christ?
Right now - at this very moment, Jesus is asking you a life-changing question…are you going to be His disciple or is the cost too great for you?
This is a very simple reply to Him of 'yes' or 'no' but in making this decision you have to do exactly all that Jesus has said in His Word or else all is in lost or in vain.
I beg and plead with you to really consider the consequences of your decision; "do not settle for just being your own person and doing your own thing, as it will cost you now and for all of eternity."
On that Great Day - the Day of the Lord - will you hear Jesus say to you "Welcome - Well done My good and faithful servant"
; as a servant is only obedient to his master and does all that he commands? (ref: Mat. 25)
So the question to you is: "Will the Jesus that was brutally beaten physically, bore all for you and shed His precious blood on the Cross for you be your Christ or will you ignore His call and continue to live in sin?"
Not one of us knows how long we have to live on this earth - but we plan and act like we have all the time in the world - but do we really?
Today - this very moment, this is the only time that you have.
Right now, Jesus is asking you:
Are you going to choose to follow Jesus or are you going to continue to do your own thing and live your life as you see fit?
You can not choose both - you can only choose to do one or the other.
The decision is yours!
You will want to read these other two (2) articles below, that gives more insight on being and living like Jesus Christ everyday.
A Free Gift For You & Are You Betraying, Denying or Selling Jesus?