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Summary: A sermon that challenges the contemporary notion of discipleship.

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"Three Laws of Discipleship"

Pt. 3 -- Following Jesus

Matthew 16:24-28

Introduction: This morning we're going to take a look at the third aspect of discipleship that our Lord speaks about as He seeks to prepare his disciples for what is up ahead. If you recall two weeks ago when we started this series we said that to be a disciple of Jesus you must deny yourself and that involved three things. You must surrender self to Christ, sacrifice self for Christ and submerge yourself in Christ. The next step in this process may be the most difficult of the three. We have to take up our cross and bear for Christ. How then do we take up the cross? We said you can't bear the cross without considering the reproach, the reception and the reign of the cross. Finally, Jesus invites his disciples to follow Him. Let's examine what's involved in being a true Christ follower:

I. WE MUST FOLLOW JESUS FULLY

The last thing our Lord says about the subject of discipleship in our text is to be a disciple we must follow him.

a. His person without reservation

When we speak of following Jesus we are not talking about religion but a relationship with a person and that person is Jesus Christ. We are not called to follow a creed, a code of conduct, a catechism, or a concept. Every time that Jesus called someone in the NT it was to follow Him.

Mat 4:19 And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.

Mat 9:9 And as Jesus passed forth from thence, he saw a man, named Matthew, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he saith unto him, Follow me. And he arose, and followed him.

John 1:43 The day following Jesus would go forth into Galilee, and findeth Philip, and saith unto him, Follow me.

John 12:26 If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour.

Luke 18:22 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.

ILL - Garibaldi had an incredibly committed volunteer army. He would appeal for recruits in these terms: "I offer neither pay, nor quarters, nor provisions; I offer hunger, thirst, forced marches, battles and death. Let him who loves his country with his heart and not with his lips only, follow me!"

Jesus invites you to discipleship. But He lets you know up front that it is a commitment that will cost you something. It's not going to be easy. To paraphrase Garibaldi, "Let him who loves the Lord with his heart and not with his lips only, be Jesus' disciple!"

b. His principles without restriction

John 10:1 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.

2 But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep.

3 To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out.

4 And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice.


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