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Summary: Next in series on John. Examines what it means to be a follower of Jesus

John 6 (4)

Are you a true follower of Jesus

(Katie Shepherd  April 1, 2020 at 5:26 a.m. EDT; Washington Post)

As stores and offices closed throughout March, many people watched with anger as thousands of college students poured into tropical locales, crowding beaches and bars to party during their regularly scheduled spring breaks. Now, as the pandemic has spread further, many people’s fears have been realized as college students by the dozen have tested positive for the coronavirus.

About 70 students from the University of Texas at Austin, all in their 20s, chartered a plane to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, in late March. They took the trip despite public health advice to avoid crowding as well as nonessential air travel.

This past Thursday, Austin public health officials announced 44 students, more than half of the young people who took the trip, had returned and tested positive for the coronavirus. Many of the remaining students are under public health monitoring, according to officials.

They were warned. They were asked to stay home, and to stay away from others. But they were young. They were invincible. They didn’t want to miss out on their fun, and now they are sick.

3 groups came out of that decision. Those who are sick and show it. Those who are sick and don’t show it, and those who are waiting to see if they are sick.

In John chapter 6, we are also introduced to 3 groups of people; those who want nothing to do with Jesus, those who serve Him with all their hearts, and those who pretend to follow Him but really don’t.

Open your Bibles this morning and turn with me please to the book of John. John chapter 6 and verse 22, as this morning we ask the question, “Are you a true follower of Jesus?” John chapter 6 and beginning in verse 22.

- Read John 6:22-42, 53-71

As we have recently seen, In the early part of John 6, Jesus taught a crowd of people, more than 5,000 folks from 5 loaves and 2 fish, because He cares and can handle big things.. Later we saw a group of people who did not know their Bibles as well as they should have, who tried to make Jesus into a kind of king they wanted. Last week we saw Jesus walk on water and realized that Jesus only comes in by invitation. In the passage before us this morning we find the scripture asking the question, “Are you a true follower of Jesus?”

The crowd Jesus fed on the other side of the lake have followed Jesus and His disciples around the lake. They knew there was only 1 boat on the other side of the lake and knew Jesus had not entered the boat with the disciples, they asked Him, “Rabbi, when did you get here?” They were wondering how in the world He had crossed the lake. Our Father often works in ways and at times we don’t understand and in ways we don’t see. But, Jesus ignored their question. He went right to the heart of the matter.

He told them, “You aren’t following me because of the miracle you saw. You aren’t following Me because of My teachings, all you was is for Me to fill your bellies. You were hungry yesterday and I fed you, now it’s time for breakfast so you come looking for Me again.

The only time and the only reason you are looking for me is because of what you can get form Me. Don’t struggle for and worry about the daily stuff, focus on the stuff that lasts forever.

I. THE WAY OF SALVATION

Pay special attention to the question the folks ask next. Look there in verse 28, “What can we do to perform the works of God?” What they are asking is, “What can we do to get to heaven? What can we do to have eternal life? What works do we have to do in order to be saved?”

Isn’t that the question all religions in the world attempt to answer? What must I do, what can I do, to be saved?

Hinduism - In Hinduism, there are 4 ways to reach Moksha, or the state where you reach enlightenment and quit the endless cycle of reincarnation and become 1 with God. You can do it through the way of action, performing certain religious ceremonies. You can do it through the way of knowledge, when you come to a complete understanding of the universe. There is the way of devotion, where you reach perfection through acts of worship, and there is the Royal Road, where you perform certain acts of yoga and meditation.

In Buddhism, you work toward Nirvana. You work toward a blissful nothingness, you become a Buddha.

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