What does it mean to follow Jesus

 

 

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” John 3:16


Everyone is invited to follow Jesus. No matter who you are, what you have done, what you haven’t done, what you have believed or not believed, what your history has been, and no matter what stage of life you are in. An open invitation is there for you to begin the process of following Jesus. Here are some of the highlights of the journey:


  • 1.  Following Jesus is an invitation to a personal relationship with an invisible God who revealed himself through His Son, who was a visible person born of a virgin on this earth. Four eyewitness accounts of His life, death, and resurrection are recorded in the first four books of the New Testament known as ‘The Gospels.’ The church should lead you to a growing relationship with Jesus. Being a sinner is a pre-requisite to following Jesus.  
  • “… for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.” Romans 3:23-24
  • Having doubts was universal by all Jesus' first desciples .
  • "Then Peter remembered the words Jesus had spoken to him: “Before the rooster crows twice you will disown me three times.” And he broke down and wept." Mark 14:72
  • 2.  The goal of following Jesus is to have an overwhelming faith such that you can face this broken and unjust world with confidence in God and overcome all sorts of circumstances without  fear. Of course fear is not completely eliminated in this life, but we have a new perspective when we consider a “fear of God”, meaning a worship filled respect for the God of the universe, verses the fear of what might happen to your body in this life.  There is no mystery. Eventually our bodies will die. Our hope is in Jesus.  
  • Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.  Matthew 10:28 
  • 3.  Followers of Jesus increase in qualities of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, patience, forgiveness, and love towards all people.
  • "Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity." Colossians 3:12-14
  • 4.  Following Jesus will cost you something, such as saying no to yourself and yes to God. But when you learn to do this, your life will have more meaning and joy, and you will be participating in something much greater than yourself.
  • “For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.” Matthew 16:25
  • 5. Following Jesus will teach you to be a great leader. Great leaders lead by serving. They leverage their authority for the sake of the people under their authority.
  • “……whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant; and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” Mark 10:43-45
  • 6.  If you decide to not follow Jesus and/or step away from Him, then you should consider carefully who or what you are stepping towards as you step away from Jesus. To whom shall you go?
  • So Jesus said to the twelve, “You do not want to go away also, do you?” Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life. John 6:67-68
  • Life transitions, temptations and trouble always create questions. If you don’t have the answers, it doesn’t mean there are no answers, you may just not know or understand them yet. Consider the options before you take your first steps away from Jesus.