Jesus said, “By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” And so the outstanding characteristic of the disciple of Jesus Christ is that he or she loves the other disciples of Jesus Christ. Are you a disciple of Christ? Learn more in this Little Lessons series.
- Are You a Disciple of Christ? (Part 1)
- Are You a Disciple of Christ? (Part 2)
- Are You a Disciple of Christ? (Part 3)
- Are You a Disciple of Christ? (Part 4)
- Can You Be a Believer in Jesus and Not a Disciple? (Part 1)
- Can You Be a Believer in Jesus and Not a Disciple? (Part 2)
- What is Obedience-Based Discipleship?
- A Little Diagram That Changed My Life
- A Super-Duper, Disciple-Making Story
Are You a Disciple of Christ? (Part 1)
If you’ve been following along with our recent Little Lessons, you know we’ve been talking about the two foremost commandments, loving God, loving neighbor, and we’ve drawn some conclusions because love for God is expressed by obedience to his commandments. Obviously, if the second greatest commandment is to love our neighbor as ourself, the greatest expression of love for God that one could have, would be obedience to this second greatest commandment, which is to love my neighbor as myself. And so we’re trying to examine ourselves to see if we really do love God. Do I really love God? Well, you can answer that question by answering this question. Do I really love my neighbors? And love, of course, is not just a feeling about a neighbor saying, oh, I just love my neighbors, I just love them.
No, it’s doing something to help them, to serve them. And of course, the greatest thing that you could ever do to prove your love for an unsaved neighbor is to, out of concern for their eternal welfare, tell them about Jesus because you’re concerned that they love God with all their heart, mind, soul and strength and are expressing it by loving their neighbor as themselves. And the greatest expression of love that I could have for a fellow believer is to also of course be concerned about their spiritual health and how well they’re doing in loving God with all their heart, mind, soul and strength as expressed by, in loving their neighbor as themselves. Okay? So we’ve talked about these things in some detail over the last two Little Lessons. I strongly encourage you, if you’re watching this Little Lesson and you didn’t see those previous two, go back and look for those two lessons that were titled, Five Facts About the Two Greatest Commandments.
But today we’re going to be looking at how this all ties in to being a disciple of Jesus Christ because Jesus couldn’t have made it more clear. He said, by this shall all men know you are my disciples if you have love one for another. And so the outstanding characteristic of the disciple of Jesus Christ is that he or she loves the other disciples of Jesus Christ. And of course, as I’ve said in our previous two lessons, that’s not expressed just by having nice, warm, fuzzy feelings about each other and passing out hugs and handshakes at church. But by truly being concerned about the spiritual welfare of my brothers and sisters, and particularly, are they loving God with all their heart, mind, soul and strength, and are they loving their neighbor as themselves? That’s why I am so concerned about the many professing Christians who are completely uninvolved or oblivious to caring for the people whom Jesus referred to as the “least of these”.
Why? Because Jesus will say one day to every everybody one of two things. Either I was hungry and you fed me or I was hungry and you didn’t feed me. You are either a sheep or a goat. And it’s all based on, did you love your neighbor as yourself? And that’s the proof of whether you loved me or didn’t love me because to the extent that you did it to the least of these my brethren, Christ says in Matthew 25, you did it unto me. So this is so important and it bears repetition and it’s worth meditating about and thinking about and talking about. It’s so fundamental and well, Christians tend to follow rabbit trails, doctrinal rabbit trails, and there’s so much in fighting over who’s got the right doctrine and when spirituality is equated with having the right doctrine, we’re missing it by a million, billion miles, to be honest with you.
And just the fact that we’re fighting amongst each other on these things is an indication of how far we’re falling short. That our love is no better than that for our brethren. It’s a reflection of our true love for God. Okay, so these are serious things. What God wants is he wants people that love him and that couldn’t be more clear from scripture. Love him with all their heart, mind, soul and strength, which of course, as we’ve already said in the last two lessons, is expressed by keeping his commandments. And if there’s any commandment that you’re going to keep, you’re going to keep at least the second most important commandment to love your neighbor as yourself, right? Right. That’s what God wants. So God wants lovers, lovers of God, lovers of people. And so people who truly love God love those that are created in his image and they’re concerned about their spiritual welfare.
If they’re not saved, they’re concerned about that. Concerned to the point of doing something. Because if I don’t do something, if I don’t pray for my unsaved friends, if I don’t let my light shine before them, if I don’t share the gospel with them, I can’t make a claim to loving them. And then that proves I really can’t make a claim to loving God. All right, so I hope that you’re thinking about these very sobering facts.
Now, we read in the gospel of Luke that there was a time where Luke describes a point in Jesus’ ministry in Luke chapter 14 and verse number 25 and he says, now, large crowds were going along with him. That’s Jesus. And he turned and he said three things to those large crowds that were going along with him. And those three things make it very clear that Jesus was not satisfied with just having a big fan base of people who are going along with him. He wanted something much more, and it shouldn’t surprise us because it’s contained in scripture from the beginning. He wants people who love him as God with all their heart, mind, soul, and strength. And not just having warm, fuzzy feelings about him, but expressing their love for him by their obedience to his commandments, of which the second greatest one is to love neighbor as self.
And so Jesus just says that same thing in a little different way here, when he enumerates the three requirements that one must meet in order to qualify to be one of his disciples. And in verse number 26 Jesus says, ‘if anyone comes to me,’ which is a phrase that Jesus uses in other places as a invitation for salvation, ‘come to me all you who are weary and heavy laden and I will give you rest. ‘ So coming to Jesus is just what it sounds like. You’re coming towards him because you want a relationship with him. ‘If anyone comes to me,’ if anyone wants a relationship with me, ‘and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple.’ Okay?
So we’re out of time for today’s lesson, but I want to leave you on this little note. No one actually thinks that Jesus literally means that we should hate the ones that we naturally love the most. So bare minimum, what he means is you have to love Jesus supremely way more than you love anyone else whom you naturally love. Why? Because I’m God, and you’re supposed to love God with all your heart, mind, soul and strength. And if you don’t love me more than anyone else supremely, you can’t be my disciple. So as we ask ourselves that question, I’m I Christ’s disciple? Here’s the first question specifically to ask ourselves, do I love Jesus supremely? All right, we’ll pick up here on our next Little Lesson. Hope to see you then. God bless you.
Are You a Disciple of Christ? (Part 2)
In today’s little lesson we’re looking in Luke chapter 14 in a passage where Jesus was speaking to what Luke calls large crowds or multitudes of people. It becomes very clear by what Jesus said that Jesus wasn’t after just having a mega church of uncommitted attendees who are following him around, a fan club as it were. He wants something more, he wants what God wants because he’s God, and what God wants is people who love him with all their heart, mind, soul and strength. That means they love him more than anyone because the second commandment is to love your neighbor as yourself and that’s second to loving God with your heart, mind, soul, and strength.
So obviously even in those two commandments it becomes clear that what God wants foremost, first of all is that we love him with all of our heart, mind, soul, and strength, but you can’t separate those two commandments because if love for God is expressed by keeping his commandments, the second commandment is to love your neighbor as yourself so you express your love for God by loving your neighbor as yourself. That’s inescapable logic from Scripture.
So we read on our last little lesson this beginning of this passage in Luke chapter 14 where large crowds were going with Jesus and he turned and he said to them, if anyone comes to me, that is if you want a relationship with me, if you’re coming to me and you don’t hate your own father, mother, wife, children, brother, sisters, yes even his own life, he can not be my disciple. Bare bones, minimum it has to mean that you have to love Jesus supremely. Surprise.
You know, it’s no surprise if Jesus is God. Now of course if Jesus isn’t God, it’s preposterous that he would require this of us. You see, so Jesus, if he wasn’t God, he was the biggest ego maniac that ever walked this earth because he’s asking everyone to love him more than the people that they would naturally love, mother, father, sister, spouse, brother, et cetera. That’s preposterous. Can you imagine me asking that of you? Telling you I require you to love me, David Servant, more than anybody else. Well you’d think, well wow. You got the biggest head and you don’t deserved to be worshiped, you probably ought to be ignored or maybe you deserve to be spit upon, you’re such a despicable person demanding that kind of love.
But if you’re God asking for that, well then there’s nothing wrong with you at all. You’re God. God is God. I mean God is, a billion, zillion times superior and of greater value than of all of humanity combined times 10 gazillion, right? I mean you know, he’s God. So the only way to rightly relate to him is to love him and man does he deserve our love. Not just because he’s God but because he’s so wonderful and he’s so good and he’s so merciful and kind. Oh my goodness, you know, how could you not love God if you know anything about him?
Well people don’t love God, many people hate God and it’s proven by their rebellion against him, they’re not submitted to him, that’s the proof that they don’t love him. A lot of people say they love God but it’s proven that they don’t because they don’t keep his commandments. Alright.
So that’s the first requirement that Jesus gave if we’re going to consider ourselves to be his disciples. So that’s the first question to ask ourselves, do I love Jesus supremely and is it evident by my life? Well, how do you know if you love somebody? Well you try to please that person, that’s what you’re doing with your spouse and your children right? Sure. If you love them. So it takes time. It takes focus, it takes energy, it takes attention, it requires sacrifice. So, if our relationship with God is nothing more than an obligatory church attendance on Sundays you know, and maybe a little money in the plate as it gets passed by, pretty hard to make the claim to loving God with all our heart mind soul and strength or being his disciple, loving Jesus supremely right? Right.
In fact, Jesus added a little, the final part of this requirement, you have to, he said, you have to hate your own father and mother which we, I think we all know that he can’t mean literally hate but by comparison, you love God so much that it could be seem to be hate. But, and yes he said, even his own life, so even your own self, because we all have self love, right? Well, we have to love God even more than we love ourselves or Jesus said, “Even our own life.” So, can we say that? I love God more than my own life. I mean that’s big love but that’s what God deserves.
Unless we love him like that we can’t make a claim to being his disciple, very sobering. Very, very sobering but, don’t be discouraged, be encouraged because if Jesus expects this of us, obviously it’s possible. It’d be unfair and unjust for him to expect something of us that’s impossible of us. It’s very possible. Plenty of people in the Bible were like this, sure.
Then the second requirement to be Jesus’ disciple that he numerated to these large crowds was in verse number 27 of Luke chapter 14, “Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after me can not be my disciple.” So coming after Jesus requires that one carries a cross. Now that’s been variously interpreted and obviously it’s not literal, it’s metaphorical. So what does carrying one’s cross represent? Well some people try to put a lot of significance on there like, you’re on the path to death to your own desires and you’re going to crucify the flesh, which are biblical, certainly biblical ideas, but I think at bare bones minimum it’s possible that the expression, “Carrying your own cross,” was not something that Jesus made up but an expression that perhaps was, that his audience was familiar with. Because all of them had seen people carrying their crosses, they would see the Roman soldiers walking along with a person carrying their cross, a condemned criminal who was shortly to be crucified.
So, carrying one’s cross= was something that someone did right before they died. Every person who carried their cross heard these dreaded words by a Roman solider, pick up your cross, pick it up, that’s part of your punishment, you’re going to carry your cross to the place where we’re going to nail you to it and hang you there. So at bare minimum, at bare minimum the softest interpretation of those words are, that you can’t be Jesus’ disciple unless you’re willing to suffer for his sake, at least on some degree of sacrifice or inconvenience, or putting your agenda aside to embrace and follow his agenda that won’t be easy.
We’re about to read, and we’re not going to have time in today’s lesson but the very next things Jesus talks about is counting the cost before you become his disciple because it’s not going to be easy, you’re embarking on a difficult journey because you have to carry your cross. Again, I imagine people in the ancient world during Jesus’ time, using that expression saying, “Well carry your cross, just carry your cross,” which means basically, do the thing that of course you would never want to do. We understand you don’t want to do this, but it’s your job, it’s your destiny, pick up your cross, carry your cross.
I imagine fathers saying to their sons, “Son I know you don’t like digging out the latrine but c’mon, pick up your cross and take the shovel and go dig out that latrine,” or wives saying to husbands, “Dear I know you hate paying the Roman’s taxes but the tax collector is working his way down the street this morning and we got the money hidden away under that rock in our back bedroom, so pick up your cross and go pay that tax collector.”
So again, this is the bare bones of minimum, it could mean more but I’m just taking the softest possible interpretation and if we’re not willing to be inconvenienced and suffer for Jesus, he said, “We can’t be his disciple.” Okay we’re out of time for today, we’ll pick up here in our next little lesson, God bless you.
Are You a Disciple of Christ? (Part 3)
We’re asking one of the most important questions that perhaps anyone could ever ask themselves, am I Christ’s disciple? And it’s one for which we can find an answer because Jesus gave us some specific things that we must do in order to be rightfully considered His disciples. And we’re currently working our way through Luke chapter 14, beginning in verse 25 when Jesus enumerated three requirements as He spoke to the large crowds who were going along with Him of what they must do if they want to come to Him and if they want to be considered one of His disciples.
And the first one, of course, was a bare bones minimum was loving Him supremely, which shouldn’t surprise us because the foremost commandment is to love God with all your heart, mind, soul, and strength, which means you love Him more than anybody or anything, of course. And that’s coming up in Luke chapter 14. So Jesus said it this way, “If anyone comes to me, doesn’t hate his father, mother, wife, children, brothers, sisters, yes, even his own life, he cannot be my disciple.” And then the second thing that He said was, “Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be my disciple.” So you can actually say that’s two requirements there. You’ve got to carry your own cross.
In our last Little Lesson, I tried to unpack that. And I’m not sure I have done the greatest job at unpacking that because it’s metaphorical. We’re not literally carrying crosses. But it’s symbolic there of something. At a bare minimum, it’s symbolic of being willing to do what you naturally wouldn’t want to do, taking up your cross, and being willing to be inconvenienced and suffer and sacrifice for Jesus’ sake. And so there’s no such thing as a casual disciple of Jesus Christ. The word disciple obviously in Jesus’ vernacular, in His understanding, means much more than just somebody who’s like a student. No, that’s clear. He didn’t say anything here about studying what He had to say, but we often equate disciple with the guy who’s up burning the midnight oil with his Bible and his commentaries and his concordance. And, “Wow. I’m a disciple of Jesus Christ. I’m really digging into His Word.”
Well, I woke up to the fact some time ago that my greatest need is not for more insight into God’s Word, my greatest need is for more obedience to the insight I already have into God’s Word. And I think that’s true of you as well and everybody within the body of Christ who knows very much at all. We often equate spiritual growth with multiplying knowledge, increasing knowledge of the Bible and spiritual things and that’s not necessarily true at all. Spiritual progress is marked by obedience to God which expresses our love for Him.
So in trying to interpret what it means to carry our own cross, I think the context is helpful because Jesus immediately then talks about counting the cost. And so the implication there is that carrying one’s cross, that’s costly. Following Jesus could cost you very well. It’s going to cost you likely some friendships. It’s going to cost you being accepted by people who don’t want to follow Jesus like you. And your life convicts and condemns them and they don’t like that and they love the darkness and so you’re going to find that you’re rejected by people as you follow Jesus. It’s going to cost you time. If you love God, how can you say, “I love God,” but I don’t spend any time devoted to doing what He wants me to do? And it’s going to cost you money because there’s things God wants us to do with our money, which means we can’t do what we want with our money because it’s not our money. We’re going to see that shortly in these requirements.
So let’s read Jesus’ two examples of what He’s trying to talk about here in carrying our cross. He says in verse number 28 of Luke 14, “For which one of you when he wants to build a tower does not first sit down and calculate the cost to see if he has enough to complete it? Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who will observe it begin to ridicule him saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.'” So the clear message there is before you launch out to be a disciple of Christ, think of what it’s going to cost you. Because you don’t want to commit yourself to what you can’t follow through on.
And then the second example in Luke 14 verse 31, “Or what king when he sets out to meet another king in battle will not first sit down and consider whether he is strong enough with 10,000 men to encounter one coming against him with 20,000? Or else, while the other is still far away, he sends a delegation and asks for terms of peace.” Okay, so again, it’s a pre-consideration of the potential outcome. And if you feel like you’re not going to be able to face up to the opposition as you begin to follow Christ, because you are like an army of 10,000 going out against 20,000, circumstantially, you’re outnumbered. There’s a lot more non-Christians than there are Christians. And there’s going to be persecution. There’s going to be resistance. There’s going to be animosity. Even the members of your own household might become your enemies because of your decision to follow Christ. And that is especially true in many contexts around the world where the dominant religion is very much against anybody who believes in Jesus Christ. So these folks have to consider the cost certainly.
So then Jesus ends these enumeration of three requirements by saying, “So then, none of you can be my disciple who does not give up all his own possessions.” And so again, all these phrases are obviously metaphorical to some degree. We don’t have to give up all our possessions, that is we don’t own a single thing including clothes on our back and plates on which to eat our food so forth while we stroll around naked and homeless. You don’t find anybody in the New Testament doing that, but you do find a lot of sacrificial giving and caring for the poor and for the “least of these” and for supporting the spread of the Gospel, right? Right. Because those are true disciples. They care. They want God’s kingdom to come. That’s what they pray. They want God’s name to be hallowed. They want His will to be done on the whole earth. And so they don’t just pray that prayer, they are living out that prayer by their lifestyle. They are letting God’s kingdom come into their own lives. He is reigning in their lives. They’re obeying Him. And they’re spreading the Gospel. And they’re supporting missionaries. And they’re caring for the least of these. These are people who have given up all their possessions because they realize that everything that I own, really it’s God’s, and I’m just his steward.
Okay, so you can see that the requirements to be one of Christ’s disciples are very high, the bar has been set very high. And only God knows how many people within Christendom or the church world are actually disciples of Christ. But I think it’s safe to say, there’s no doubt that there is many people under the … At least they think, the banner of Christendom, who are not Christ’s disciples. Should this concern them? Oh my goodness, yes. And our next Little Lesson, the final conclusion of all of this, and you’ll be shouting it with me, should we be concerned about this? If we’re not concerned about the state of the church, how can we make a claim to loving our neighbor as ourself? And how can we make a claim to loving God with all of our heart, mind, soul, and strength? We can’t. So people who are not concerned that others are not disciples and don’t love God with all their heart, mind, soul, and strength, whether they be unbelievers or even professing Christians, something’s really wrong there. Something’s really wrong there.
Okay, way out of time today. Thanks for joining me. Hope to see you next time. God bless.
Are You a Disciple of Christ? (Part 4)
Thank you once again for joining me. This is a look at what Jesus said one must do to be his disciple. This is part four and if you missed the first three, I really would strongly encourage you to stop this video and search for the first four and watch the first three before we go, because we’re really breaking into the middle here, you’re not going to get the full impact of the word that we’re looking at okay.
So am I Christ’s disciple? Well Jesus is helping us to know whether we’re his disciple because he’s laid out three requirements to be his disciple, and we found them in Luke Chapter 14 verses 25 through 35, 11 verses there altogether. I’m paraphrasing these metaphorical expressions like hate your mother and father, and carry your cross and give up all your possessions. I’m paraphrasing them to say, we’re not Christ’s disciple unless we love him supremely, more than any other person we love on this planet and as Christ said, “Even our own selves, even our own lives.”
And we’re not his disciple unless we’re willing to be inconvenienced and suffer for his sake and be burdened in some shape or form on his behalf, all right. We set aside our agenda to take his agenda. Jesus said, “Come to me all you who are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest for your souls. Take my yolk upon you.” So the picture that Jesus paints of what is required of us to come to him is the picture of taking our yolk, a yolk, upon us. Well everyone knew what he was talking about in his day, because in Agrarian society, people had ox and oxen and you put a yolk on that ox or those oxen and you tie that yolk to a plow and so taking the yolk is symbolic of submitting to the master. I’m here to work for you. I’m here to do your bidding.
And so I’ll put your yolk willingly on my neck so that you can direct me to go to work for you. And that’s what Jesus said we need to do. Come to me all you who are weary and heavy laden, I will give you rest for your souls. Take my yolk upon you, for my yolk is easy, and my burden is light. So I’m not gonna kill you, but I do want control. My relationship with you is Master and Lord and King and boss right? Right. Jesus is Lord, he’s God. The only way to have a relationship with God is to submit to him and to think that you could possibly have a relationship with God apart from submitting to him is absolutely preposterous.
People say, “Oh I love Jesus, he’s my friend.” Oh, oh, oh? Is he your friend? Well how did Jesus say it? Well you are my friends if you do what I command you. Jesus is not offering any other relationships here. All right, so love him supremely, willing to suffer and put I love him more than any material things. So I love him supremely, more than any other people, any other person, family member, my own life, myself. I love him more than my own convenience, my own agenda. I love him more than any material thing, any material pursuit, because I’ve given up all my possessions because I can’t be his disciple unless I do and that’s what Jesus wants.
And that’s just another way of saying, “God wants us to love him with all of our heart, mind, soul and strength,” and it’s expressed not by just warm fuzzy feelings about God, but by obedience to his commandments of which the second foremost one is, love your neighbor as yourself.
Now we’re coming to the conclusion of this passage in Luke Chapter 14 as Jesus is speaking to his fan club, the large crowds, the mega church that’s going along with him. Jesus is not satisfied, he wants more than fans, he’s God. He deserves much more than fans. So then Jesus says in Luke 14, verse number 34, obviously in typical Jesus fashion, speaking metaphorically but you have to be dishonest to say that you don’t have a clue what he means by this because he said, “Therefore, salt is good.” Well it is good okay. Salt is good for a seasoning. In Jesus’s day, salt was also good as a preservative. He said to his disciples, “You’re the salt of the earth. Right? You’re what’s keeping this earth from going totally rotten. You’re the salt of the earth, so therefore, salt is good, but if even salt has become tasteless with what will it be seasoned?”
Well the answer is if salt would lose it’s salty taste, how are you going to make it salty? It’s lost it’s one identifying component and again, there’s various explanations as to what Jesus was talking about here. That back in their day, the salt wasn’t entirely pure salt and if what people used as salt which was a combination of salt and something else. If the salt was washed out of that something else and so it loses it’s saltiness, he said, “It’s useless, either for the soil or the manure pile. It is thrown out.”
So again, variously interpreted, you know because what good is salt for soil or salt for the manure pile? Well it could add to the in some sense is a fertilizer but if the salt has lost it’s saltiness, then it’s actually not even good for the manure pile. It’s not good for anything. It’s not good as any kind of fertilizer in the soil. It’s thrown out. It’s utterly useless and in the context of what Jesus just said to the large crowds that were following him, you know, about what’s required by Jesus to be his disciple. The only possible honest way to interpret what he says in these couple of verses is this, if you’re not his disciple, or if you’re his disciple and you lose your commitment to him, that true disciples have, you’re completely useless, good for nothing to him.
Whew. Now if that message was preached in every church in the world and people heeded it, it could make a big difference couldn’t it? Because we have so many people who are in the realm of Christendom, who you know can’t really make a claim to being a disciple of Christ by Christ’s standards and therefore, they’re useless to him.
And in our next little lesson, we’ll try to address the whole idea of are there two categories of Christians. The believers and the disciples. That is can you be a heaven bound believer but not be a disciple of Christ? Great question. To be continued in our next little lesson. See you then.
Can You Be a Believer in Jesus and Not a Disciple? (Part 1)
Welcome to today’s Little Lesson. This is a continuation of about four previous Little Lessons that have been on this subject of discipleship and it’s kind of logically led us to this point because we covered three of the requirements that Jesus said one must meet to qualify to be his disciple. They’re all pretty demanding requirements, to sum them all up as they’re described by Jesus in Luke chapter 14, we must love him supremely, more than anybody else, more than ourselves, more than our own life, more than our own convenience, more than our own agenda, more than any material pursuit or possession, Jesus must be absolute Lord and Master of our life and we love him like God wants us to love him, with all of our heart, mind, soul and strength.
So because of those requirements to be a disciple, it is often questioned whether or not it’s possible to be a believer in Jesus and not be a disciple of Jesus, because we know that salvation is a free gift and Jesus died for our sins and we can’t earn it and so on and so forth, but these requirements for discipleship sound like there’s some things that we have to do. So a theology has been created that creates a dichotomy, that one can be a believer in Christ but not necessarily be a disciple of Christ, that discipleship is an optional second step that one might take beyond just believing in Jesus, becoming his disciple.
Now, is this idea supported in scripture? Well, I’m afraid that it isn’t supported in scripture. In fact, it isn’t supported by a shred of Scripture, it’s just the invention of some theological reasoning that when examined in the light of scripture, falls very far short. So can start by asking ourselves the question, is it possible to believe in Jesus but not love Jesus? I think we’d all agree that that’s an absurd, preposterous idea, that you could believe in him and not love him. I think scripture is also very clear on that. So to believe in him is to love him but Jesus said, “If you love me, you’ll keep my commandments.” So if to believe in Jesus is to love Jesus, then to believe in Jesus is to love Jesus and keep his commandments because if you do love him, you’ll keep his commandments.
So we can see that to say that you could believe in Jesus and not obey Jesus is just as preposterous as to say you can believe in Jesus and not love Jesus. Right? Right. Well, all that Jesus said in his requirements to be a disciple are all issues of the heart that result in devotion and obedience and people stumble over that of course and the theology but the solution is not to ignore what Jesus said and stick to your guns of your theology, it’s to adjust your theology so it’s totally in line with all the scripture and not just parts of scripture that we take out, we cherry pick and say, “Oh I like that one, I’ll put that one up on my refrigerator door.” Or, “I’ll underline that one in my Bible because that’s one that I really like, I’ll underline that one.” It’s funny but it’s actually sad, we ought to go back and read all the verses of the Bible that we didn’t underline or highlight because those are just as inspired and just as important as the one that we’ve underlined that we want to emphasize for some reason.
Okay, so to believe in Jesus equals to love Jesus, equals to obey Jesus and this is why scripture is replete with statements that are the equivalent of if we truly believe in Jesus, it’s expressed by our obedience to his commandments. There’s a list of proofs of that. So that answers the question, can you be a believer of Jesus and not be a disciple of Jesus? Well, there’s nothing in scripture that would ever support such an idea as that and we just spent several Little Lessons looking over what Jesus said about being his disciple and he said, “If anyone wishes to come after me,” so the invitation is, “If you want to come after me, this is what you have to do or else you won’t be my disciple.” He ended it all up by saying, “If you’re not my disciple, you’re utterly worthless and useless to me.” To think that you can be worthless to Jesus and useless to Jesus and on the safe and secure road to eternal life would seem doubtful, right? Especially in light of all the other scriptural truths.
Those who have come up with this dichotomous theology that one can be a believer of Jesus and not be a disciple of Jesus, well how about the Great Commission? “Go unto all the world make disciples,” that’s what Jesus wants, that’s undeniable, not a word there about converts or believers, “Go make disciples. Teaching them to obey all that I commanded you.” But before that he said, “Baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I grant you.” So no one can deny that Jesus said to baptize the disciples. Well it’s funny that these guys who have a dichotomous theology that you can be a believer in Christ and not be a disciple of Christ, baptize believers who they would readily say are not really disciples. Well Jesus didn’t say to baptize believers, he said baptize disciples, “Go into all the world and make disciples, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to obey all that I command you.”
No one can deny that in the Book of Acts, people who made professions of faith in Jesus Christ, believing in him, therefore loving him, therefore committing themselves to obey him, they baptized them. They baptized them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. They baptized everyone who believed. And by the same token, this is why the gospel that was preached by John the Baptist, preached by Jesus, preached by all the Apostles, included a call to repentance. Turn from your sins. Stop doing the things that you know that you shouldn’t be doing. Start doing the things that you’re neglecting to do that you know should be doing in obedience to your God-given conscience and the commandments of Jesus Christ, which we’re going to teach you.
So these guys, some of them are so far off base that they actually eliminate the very Biblical, undeniably, irrefutable scriptural mandate to preach baptism and to preach repentance for the forgiveness of sins. That’s what Jesus said to his disciples in the end of Luke. He said, “Go, preach repentance for the forgiveness of sins.” That is the deal that God is offering, is the forgiveness of sins to those who repent, turning way from his sin. Come on, think about how silly it would be to say, “Well God’s just going to forgive you so you can keep on doing the things that he just forgave you of.” What? That doesn’t make any sense at all, okay?
In keeping with the same theme and in closing for today’s Little Lesson, James said emphatically, in no uncertain terms, ‘Faith without works is dead, useless and it cannot save anybody.’ So, end of story.
Now, in our next Little Lesson, I’ll have even more biblical proof that exposes the erroneous idea that one can be a believer in Christ and not be a disciple of Christ. If you’re not a disciple of Christ, you really don’t believe in Bible Jesus. You might believe in American Jesus or some other idol that doesn’t really exist, a false God that you call Jesus. I mean, you could carve out of a tree log an idol and call it Jesus and that doesn’t make you a Christian, does it? No, you got to have some semblance to the real Jesus if you’re really going to be a real Christian, a real believer, a real disciple. All right? Right, I hope to see you next time. Thank you so much for joining me on today’s Little Lesson.
Can You Be a Believer in Jesus and Not a Disciple? (Part 2)
Welcome to today’s Little Lesson. Thanks so much for joining me. It’s always a joy to be able to share in the Word of God. We’re looking at one of the most important questions, I think, that anybody could ask, because there’s so much confusion on this issue, the issue of the so-called difference, possible difference that one could actually be a believer in Jesus but not be a disciple of Christ. And the reason that this theology has been concocted is because of a false understanding of the grace that saves us, because the grace that God’s saving us with and for and by is not a license to sin. No, the grace that God is showing us is an opportunity to turn from sin and be forgiven of our sins as we walk in holiness. That’s the deal.
Remember the woman caught in the act of adultery. Jesus showed her grace, or mercy, whatever you want to call it. She was saved by grace, she wasn’t saved by her works, right? Jesus didn’t say, “Okay, because of something you do, I’m forgiving you.” No, it was pure grace. She didn’t deserve it, she was caught in the act of adultery, yet he said, “Neither do I condemn you.” But that’s not all he said. He said, “Now go and sin no more.” Why? Because adulterers will not inherit the kingdom of heaven, and if you die in the state of an adulterous affair, you’re in trouble, because adulterers will not, Paul said emphatically, will not inherit the kingdom of God.
Imagine if that lady caught in the act of adultery died having not repented of her adultery, and then stood before Jesus and walked into the throne room, and then said, “Oh, Jesus, I’m so glad it’s you, because you’re such a nice person, and I remember on the earth how you didn’t condemn me then, and the Bible says Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. And so, if you didn’t condemn me then, surely you won’t condemn me now, and so where’s the entry gate for heaven, because I’m ready to enter into eternal life.” He would say, “I’m sorry, but you misunderstood the grace. Remember, I didn’t just say to you, ‘Neither do I condemn you,’ I said, ‘Neither do I condemn you. Now go sin no more.'” That’s the picture of the true Christian, who is, of course, then a disciple.
In our last Little Lesson, we were kind of enumerating some of the Biblical undeniable proof that it’s preposterous to think that you could believe in Jesus and not obey Jesus, because if you believe in Jesus, you love Jesus, and Jesus said, “If you love me, you keep my commandments.” All right? And James wrote, “Faith without works is dead, it’s useless, it cannot save you.” So, again, just think about it logically. If you believe in Jesus, that he is the Son of God before whom you will stand one day to give an account, because he’s the judge of the living and the dead, and yet you haven’t repented of your sins, and you’re not striving to obey him, and you’re not concerned about what he thinks about your life, and yet you say you believe he is the Son of God, you’re only fooling yourself. You’re not fooling God, or anybody else, for that matter, who understands this basic stuff, okay?
Now, listen to what Paul, the great apostle of grace, wrote in the second chapter of Romans, “But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, who will render to each person according to his deeds.” So that’s what Paul believed. People who don’t repent, who are stubborn and don’t repent, they’re storing up wrath for themselves, because God is going to reward everyone according to their deeds, and if your deeds are evil, you’re going to get judgment and punishment, you’re not going to get forgiveness and eternal life, or grace and mercy.
So, Paul goes on to elaborate: “Who will render to each person according to his deeds: to those who by perseverance in doing good seek for glory and honor and immortality, eternal life.” Who gets eternal life? Those, according to Paul, who by perseverance in doing good seek for glory and honor and immortality. That’s who gets eternal life. And you say, “Well, that sounds different than believing in Jesus.” Maybe it sounds different, but it’s not different, because people who believe in Jesus then, of course, persevere then in doing good, and they seek for glory from God, and they seek honor when they stand before God, and they’re longing for immortality, they want eternal life.
And so those are the ones who get it, because they’re the only ones who believe in Jesus, the ones who have repented and are striving to serve and obey him, the disciples. But then contrast with that, Paul, the great apostle of grace, says, “But to those who are selfishly ambitious and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, wrath and indignation.” That’s what Paul believed, okay?
So, again, there’s other Biblical proof that it’s preposterous to think that one can believe in Jesus but not be striving to obey Jesus as his disciple. You know, Jesus’ foretelling of the future judgment of the sheep and the goats was all about obedience. It was all about loving my neighbor as myself, nothing said about belief at all, because clearly, only the sheep believed. The goats didn’t believe. They believed maybe something, might have believed in an idol that they called Jesus, but they really didn’t believe in Jesus as he’s revealed himself, and so who can argue with that? “I was hungry and you fed me. I was hungry and you didn’t feed me.” That’s what determines whether you go to heaven or hell, because the people who believe in Jesus care for the “least of these”. The people that don’t care for the least of these don’t believe in Jesus. They’re not his disciples. They don’t love him with all their heart, mind, soul, and strength.
Further proof that there’s no such thing as this dichotomy between believers and disciples, but that they are synonymous: In the book of Acts, there’s no division. The Bible in the book of Acts repeatedly, at least, I think, 30 times, mentions the disciples, and not clearly from the context as the elite class of really committed believers. No, it was everyone who believed in Jesus. They were naturally, of course, his disciple, because if you believe in him, then you’re his disciple.
And then maybe a final proof to wrap this up, while there could be many other proofs: In John chapter 8, John talks about there’s some Jews who came to believe in Jesus as he spoke, and Jesus said to those believers, those brand-new Jewish believers, “If you continue in my Word,” that is, if you now begin to live in what I said, and that would imply knowing and obeying his command, you continue in his Word, he said to those new believers, “then you are truly disciples of mine.” So Jesus equated these believers with being disciples. They’re professing to believe, so he says, “Well, here’s the real proof if you believe in me, if you continue in my Word, and only then are you my disciples.” He could have said, “Only then do we know that you really believe in me.”
So, discipleship is not an optional future step of commitment; discipleship is the proof of belief in Jesus. Are you a disciple? If you say, “I’m not,” let me lovingly tell you, you don’t believe in Jesus. Okay? But you can. You can, that’s the great news, okay? Repent of your sins, believe in Jesus, not American Jesus, not some idol that you’ve erected that represents Jesus that you gave the name Jesus. Believe in Bible Jesus. He said, “Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord’ and not do what I say?” He said, “Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we cast out demons?'” He said, “Depart from me. I never knew you.” What’s the proof? “You who practice lawlessness.” Okay.
Well, in future Little Lessons, we’re going to talk about some real practical things about being a disciple of Jesus Christ. It’s going to be great. But we first got to make sure we are his disciple before we learn how to be his disciple. All right, thanks for joining me. Until next time, God bless.
What is Obedience-Based Discipleship?
Welcome to today’s Little Lesson. Thank you so much for joining me. If you’re a regular viewer, you know that we’ve been on the theme of discipleship. Certainly a biblical concept and biblical word. You know that Jesus said, “Go into all the world and make disciples of all the nations.” Actually, all the ethne, all the ethnic groups, all the tongues and tribes and languages. Because one day before the throne of God, there are going to be people from every tongue and tribe and nation and language. And Jesus wants us to make disciples.
And what is a disciple? Well, no one really has to argue that for too long because Jesus defined what a disciple is. Because he said, “Baptize them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. And teach them to observe or obey everything I commanded you.” And so that commandment was a commandment that was perpetually binding upon every successive generation of Christian or disciples. Because as Jesus’ disciples made disciples, teaching them to obey all that Christ commanded them, one of the things that Christ commanded them was that they should be making disciples. And so every generation of disciples would naturally teach their disciples to make disciples.
And this is something I want to talk about on this Little Lesson and the next Little Lesson. Because oftentimes we think, when we become believers, that our responsibility then is not to make disciples, but our responsibility is to get people saved by bringing them to church so they can hear the pastor or an evangelist preach the Gospel and they can become believers hopefully. And then they can keep coming back to church where they can be discipled. And so we see our only role as a role of inviting people to church. And many pastors play into that model, I might add. Many pastors play into that model. And pastor, if you’re listening to me, think for a second. You’re telling your people their responsibility is invite people to church, bring your friends to church. And we always have these events designed to get people to come to the church.
Okay, that’s good. But many times good is the enemy of the best. Because Jesus didn’t say, “Go, invite your friends to church.” He said, “Go into all the world and make disciples of all the nations.” So we’re supposed to be going and making disciples as we’re going.
And this phrase that I asked what is the meaning of it at the beginning of this Little Lesson, this fits in perfectly to what I’m talking about, because the phrase, and I just actually recently read this phrase. I’ve been reading some books about disciple making movements and in a nutshell they are what I just described to you earlier in this Little Lesson, it’s multiplying of disciples through generations. Disciples making disciples making disciples. And it’s all tied into the idea of obedience to Christ’s commandments.
As I’ve already said, and it certainly bears repetition here, every disciple should be involved in making disciples and teaching them to obey all that Christ commands. And that’s not the only place we find that concept. I mean, in the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said the one who’s the greatest in the kingdom is the one who keeps and teaches the commandments. So not just keeps, not just keeps, let me say it a third time, not just keeps the commandments, but teaches others. So we’re sharing with others.
Let me just ask the question before I answer the question that I posed, are you a disciples of Jesus Christ? That’s what I’ve been asking for the last few Little Lessons and now we’ll take it another step further, are you making disciples? So that involves, of course, teaching what Jesus commanded. Well, it starts, of course, if you’re starting with non-believers, with sharing the Gospel with them. And hopefully they believe and then you can then help them grow and teach them what you know.
But you can disciple people that you didn’t lead to Jesus. Sure, if you know more than somebody else who is following Christ and you can help them with what you know, well, then you can help disciple them. So it’s really important.
The phrase, obedience-based discipleship, has been birthed out of this whole concept, and it’s not just a concept, it’s happening in hundreds of places around the world today, disciple-making movements where disciples are making disciples to making disciples. And, of course, it’s multiplying because it multiplies exponentially. It can’t help but do that if we really have disciples who are really making disciples.
And so, people within that movement, the disciple-making movement, sometimes referred to as church planting movements, they coined the phrase obedience based discipleship just to counteract the wrong idea that so many of us have had about discipleship. That is, really nothing more than knowledge acquisition. But you could say, knowledge based discipleship. But if it’s just passing on knowledge, it’s not really discipleship. But that’s what we think. Come to church, hear more sermons, hear more sermons. Grow in your knowledge and learn more from the Bible. And that’s discipleship. “Oh, I know so much more about the Bible than I knew three years ago and I’m being discipled.” Wait a second, wait a second, are you obeying Christ more? That’s the real litmus test of are you being discipled and are you a disciple?
These guys coined this phrase obedience based discipleship just as a way of differentiating it from what is really not discipleship at all, but which could be termed as knowledge based discipleship. You got it? Okay, it’s a pretty easy concept to get.
This is so, so, so important. We’ve got to have a paradigm shift in our minds, believe you me, because really, and I wrote this down concerning myself not too long ago, my greatest need is not for more insight into God’s word. My greatest need is more obedience to the insight I already possess. True for you too, right? True for all of us. Well, maybe not true for all of us because some are just baby Christians who don’t know anything yet. So they might be applying everything that they’ve learned.
But if you’ve been sitting around in church for years and years and years, you’ve probably acquired a head full of understanding of the Word of God, so is it reflected in every increasing obedience to Christ? And when we’re putting into practice obedience-based discipleship, the disciples that we’re making, that’s how we measure our success. Are my disciples growing in their obedience? Not growing just in their knowledge, but growing in their obedience to Jesus. Because that’s what he wants, right? Go into all the world, make disciples. He didn’t say teaching them all the stuff that they can learn about the Bible. No, teaching them to obey all that I’ve commanded you.
All right, well, we’re out of time for this time. Thank you so much for joining me. Next time I’m going to continue on this at a little different angle. I think you’ll find it quite interesting. Hope to see you then. God bless you.
A Little Diagram That Changed My Life
Thanks a lot for joining me. If you’re a regular viewer, you know we’ve been talking about discipleship. I want to tell you today about a little diagram, a little chart that I saw just a few months ago from when I’m recording this video, drawn by a very, very successful disciple-making missionary by the names of Curtis Sergeant. I don’t know if this is his original. If he was here he might be giving credit to somebody else, but who really cares. Here’s that little chart. I’m just going to hold it up here first of all and let you look at it. Very, very simple. You see three rectangles sticking up here.
I want you to imagine that these three rectangles represent the three legs of a stool that you would sit upon. Of course, to be a stable stool, all three of these legs need to be about the same height, otherwise it’s an unstable stool. This relates to what did Jesus said about going into all the world and making disciples, teaching them to obey all that I commanded you. Which one of the things he commanded them was to go make disciples, teaching them to obey. So that’s a perpetual commandment that’s binding upon every successive generation of disciple. Every disciple’s supposed to be making disciples. Now how does that apply in this chart? Well let me share that.
This first leg on the stool, I’ve written in there “knowledge”. That represents spiritual, biblical knowledge. Everybody has so much knowledge if they’ve been a Christian for any length of time. You know something about Jesus. You know something about his work. You know something about what he expects of us. Then the second leg that should be equal in length as the first one is application. That is, I should be doing everything I know to do. I should be applying everything that I know God expects of me from his word. Right? I shouldn’t be obeying a half or a third or a fourth of what I know what Jesus said. I should be doing all of it, applying everything I know. That’s why I said in our previous broadcast, my greatest need is not for more insight into God’s word, my greatest need is for more application of the insight of God’s Word I already have. I bet you it’s true for a lot of people that are watching this.
Now, this third leg is the one that was a big revelation for me and it might be a big revelation for you too when you you see it diagrammed like this. It’s labeled, “sharing”. So as much as I know and as much as I’m applying, I should be sharing with others because I’m called to make disciples. If you’re a disciple of Christ, you’re called to make disciples. So you should be obeying all that you understand of Christ’s commandments and you should be making disciples sharing what you know with others to help them become just as obedient as you are to Jesus Christ.
Now this same missionary, Curtis Sergeant who shared this diagram, had another really good little short sermon about, “Are you a disciple worth multiplying?” Maybe I’ll do a little lesson on that, because it was so good. If we were to draw a diagram that represented many Christians, if not most professing Christians, it might look something like this.
I don’t know if you can see what I’m doing here. So these two second legs on the stool have been shortened dramatically and so representing the fact that many if not most Christians have tons of knowledge that they’re not applying and even less that their sharing with others. This makes one an unstable soul, not an unstable stool, which you would sit on, the three legs example. An unstable soul, because all of these … these three legs should all be of equal length.
Okay, now you see why that is so profound. Because again, first of all most Christians would admit and confess and acknowledge, “Well I should be obeying everything that I know of Christ’s commandments. I should be applying everything that I know form the word of God. I’m responsible for what I know. So this should be equal to this one over here. But this one over here is just off the radar of many professing Christians who don’t realize that their supposed to be making disciples. They should be being discipled by somebody as well. Let’s keep it going this direction. Every Christian should be discipling somebody else. So you should be sharing what you know, with somebody else. Christians naturally do that if they’re true Christians. It happens naturally.
I’ve got a lot of Christian friends on Facebook, and they’re always posting things that are admonishing and encouraging and sharing what they know to try to pass on to other believers who are their friends on Facebook. Some of it’s always not so good, because some people are pushing their pact doctrines that are something a little bit goofy. But still, they want other people to know what they know. So they are sharing something. Again, we want to be sharing what Jesus taught. Jesus didn’t say go into all the world and preach your goofy doctrines. He said go into all the world and make disciples, teach them to obey my commands. That’s what Jesus is after, obedience.
So here’s why this is such a revelation. You my dear viewer, as well as me need to understand that we should look at our lives. Am I applying everything that I know? Then secondly, am I sharing with someone who needs to know what I know? Am I sharing everything that I know and making these three legs of the stool the same height? You got it?
Okay, so when you wake up tomorrow, here’s the first thing to think, “Am I a disciple?” If I am, I should be involved in making disciples. That means I should be sharing the gospel with those who don’t know the Lord and those who do know the Lord. If I’m more mature, if I’m further along in the spiritual path then they are, then I should sharing with them. You can actually help someone who’s on the same plane as you are and you can actually help someone that might be further along than you are in some respects, if God’s helped you to see something that they haven’t seen. That’s a great blessing. The most wonderful thing in the world is to lead someone to Jesus. I guess the second most wonderful thing in the world is to then disciple that person. The next most wonderful thing is for your disciple to make a disciple. Doesn’t get any better than that.
All right, thanks so much for joining me on this little lesson and we’ll hope to see you next time. God bless.
A Super-Duper, Disciple-Making Story
Hi, welcome to today’s little lesson. Thanks so much for joining me. If you’re a regular viewer, you know we’ve been talking about discipleship, and being a disciple, and making disciples, something that Jesus expects of all of his true followers and believers. It’s not that we’re just supposed to believe in Jesus and then attend church and maybe invite other people to church. No. We’re supposed to be not only believing in Jesus, following and obeying Jesus, and sharing what we know with others about Jesus, and making disciples. We’ve covered a number of real simple, basic concepts. But I wanted to share on today’s Little Lesson a story about someone who applied these very simple principles some years ago, and was extremely successful in seeing a movement launch, that was a movement that resulted in multiple generations of disciples that continues to this very day.
I heard this straight from the lips of the person who experienced it firsthand. His name is Curtis Sergeant. He and his wife Debie, went to China in the early 1990s to Hainan Island off the southern coast of China. It was a province of people who spoke Hainanese, and it wasn’t even a written language. They’re very backward folk, very primitive folk by modern standards, and an unreached people group, just maybe no more than a hundred believers amongst a population of almost 7 million Hainanese. So, Curtis and his wife started trying to share the gospel as southern Baptist missionaries. Curtis ran into the typical roadblocks and hurdles that missionaries run into, and it dawned on him that if he won one person to the Lord every day, by the time that he retired, there would be only so many people who are Christians, and it wouldn’t even keep up with population growth.
That is, winning one person a day, by the time he retired in 30 some years, Christians would be a smaller part of the population percentage-wise than they were when he started. So he realized, “I have to do something to multiply. I have to plant churches that will plant churches, that will plant churches.” And that’s exactly what he set out to do. He erased all of the typical hurdles of having only trained clergy, professionals be leaders. He tried to train everyone to be a leader, because every Christian can be a leader and can lead other people to Jesus Christ. And, every Christian could also disciple other Christians, because if you know more than somebody else, well you can share it. Okay? We do that all the time on many other levels and different realms in our secular lives. All right?
So, he began making disciples, teaching them to make disciples who then in turn would teach their disciples to make disciples. Within a few years, they had thousands of believers. Curtis, I think, only ever knew maybe about 60 of them all together. Realize this is communist China. And so, things are underground and secretive and clandestine. They’re not building church buildings. They’re not doing stuff out in the open because it’s all illegal. So, he and his wife were able to leave then after just a few years. That movement has continued today to where there’s almost 1 million people in Hainan Province in China who can trace their spiritual legacy back to this one missionary couple. Isn’t that astounding? Now what if we all were able to do that? Well, we might not be able to do it to the extent that Curtis and Debie Sergeant did it, because they were amongst an unreached people group and there wasn’t a lot of Christian religious inertia against what they were doing.
Of course, there were obstacles, and hurdles, and roadblocks, and resistance on other levels, but let’s face it, the harvest is riper in some places of the world than it is in other places of the world. For example, here in the United States of America where I happen to live, Christian religion has had a building inertia since before it was even a nation. In many traditional forms and fashions, it exists today, and so people aren’t open to the idea of, in many cases, simple faith in Jesus Christ that results in obedience to His commandments, which then means I’m a disciple who’s trying to make disciples. We can do that outside of the context of all the things that a lot of folks think are absolutely essential to Christianity, which of course you can’t find them anywhere in the book of Acts. Things like buildings, and programs, and staff, and salaries, and all that kind of stuff that actually slows down, in many ways, the process of disciple making because there’s so many other things that people are pursuing.
Buildings, and programs, and staff, and so on and so forth. When making disciples becomes your singular goal, and you realize that, “I can do that anywhere, anytime. I don’t need a building. We don’t need a seminary-trained professional, a Bible school graduate.” No. If I know Jesus, if I believe in Jesus, I can tell someone else how to believe in Jesus. I can tell them what it means to be born again. If I’m following Jesus endeavoring to obey his commandments, I can tell someone else how to do that. I could show them some scriptures and I could give them a Bible. They can find out themselves. They can become self-feeders. All right? So, this is a super-duper disciple-making story of what happened to Curtis and Debie Sergeant in Hainan Province, Hainan island in China. But you can be an ongoing continuation of that story by looking around and asking God to open your eyes.
“Lord, who can I disciple? Are there unbelievers around me that I could lead to Jesus? That I could tell them what God has done for me. Tell them my story of how I came to the Lord, and how I’m different now. Are there believers around me who are really baby Christians, or they’re missing some pieces that maybe I could fill in to their jigsaw puzzle, and help them to grow and become more like Jesus.” All right? Now of course, you first will have to examine yourself. “Am I a disciple. Am I a disciple worth multiplying? Does God want more of this? This person. Is that what God wants?” And if you look at yourself and you come up with a negative answer on that, well, then the first thing to fix yourself, and thank God through the power of the Holy Spirit, you can be fixed. Praise God. Okay? So, that’s a super-duper disciple-making story that I couldn’t resist sharing with you. Hope to see you next time. God bless you.