Friday, December 13, 2013

Jesus Said Follow Me

There are a plethora of phrases people use to describe their relationship with God: I am saved; I've given my soul to Christ; I love Jesus; I am a bride of Christ; I have placed my faith in Christ; I have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ; or I'm born again.

I would like to suggest a simpler one; one found repeatedly in the Bible; one Jesus himself used:

     I follow Jesus Christ.

Jesus repeatedly told people to follow him.
Another of his disciples said to him, "Lord, allow me first to go and bury my father." But Jesus said to him, "Follow me, and leave the dead to bury their own dead." (Mt 8:21-22 WEB)

As Jesus passed by from there, he saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax collection office. He said to him, "Follow me." He got up and followed him.” (Mt 9:9 WEB)

Then Jesus said to his disciples, "If anyone desires to come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.” (Mt 16:24 WEB)

A certain ruler asked him, saying, "Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?" Jesus asked him, "Why do you call me good? No one is good, except one—God. You know the commandments: ‘Don’t commit adultery,’ ‘Don’t murder,’ ‘Don’t steal,’ ‘Don’t give false testimony,’ ‘Honour your father and your mother.’" He said, "I have observed all these things from my youth up." When Jesus heard these things, he said to him, "You still lack one thing. Sell all that you have, and distribute it to the poor. You will have treasure in heaven. Come, follow me." (Lu 18:18-22 WEB)

On the next day, he was determined to go out into Galilee, and he found Philip. Jesus said to him, "Follow me." (Joh 1:43 WEB)

“If anyone serves me, let him follow me. Where I am, there will my servant also be. If anyone serves me, the Father will honour him.” (Joh 12:26 WEB)

“Most certainly I tell you, when you were young, you dressed yourself, and walked where you wanted to. But when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and another will dress you, and carry you where you don’t want to go." Now he said this, signifying by what kind of death he would glorify God. When he had said this, he said to him, "Follow me." (Joh 21:18-19 WEB)
The disciples are also described as following Jesus:
He said to them, "Come after me, and I will make you fishers for men." They immediately left their nets and followed him. (Mt 4:19-20 WEB)

Again, the next day, John was standing with two of his disciples, and he looked at Jesus as he walked, and said, "Behold, the Lamb of God!" The two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus.

Then Peter answered, "Behold, we have left everything, and followed you. What then will we have?" Jesus said to them, "Most certainly I tell you that you who have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of Man will sit on the throne of his glory, you also will sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.” (Mt 19:27-28 WEB)

Jesus said to him {Peter}, "If I desire that he stay until I come, what is that to you? You follow me." (Joh 21:22 WEB)
Jesus described his sheep as his followers:
“My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” (Joh 10:27 WEB)
There is a tendency to make theological issues complex. So complex that they become unusable in everyday situations. How do you apply being “born again” or “having a personal relationship with Jesus” to any type of daily decision? They describe a state of being, but there's no action implied in that state.

I follow Jesus. It describes a state of being (a follower), but requires action on your part to maintain that state (following).

I'm not saying other descriptions are wrong, but for some reason, the concept that Christians are “followers of Jesus” has taken a backseat in modern times to other descriptions. Maybe it's time we revive it.

1 comment:

  1. Being and action,brilliant! I was 'saved' in 1982, but only started following Jesus about 5 years ago after reading this comment by Richly Chheuy:" But following Christ does not mean following His followers. Christ is infinitely more important than Christianity and always will be, no matter what Christianity is, has been, or might become."
    Most people , men and women, have a 'Personal Jesus'. A Personal Jesus just hangs around until you 'need' him. He's not for following.