Summary: Considering those who are wholly devoted to the cause of Christ!
Disciples Of Christ
Sermon # 4 - Faithful Disciples Of Christ
Today is sermon #4 in a series of 5 sermons about Disciples of Christ. 3 weeks ago we examined the life and tragic end of a man named Judas. In his story we saw a picture of “False Disciples” Then we saw the story of a man named Joseph of Arimathaea who was described as a “secret disciple” in a sermon about “Fearful Disciples” Last week we examined the story of Simon Peter and his denial of Christ and preach on the subject of “Fallen Disciples Of Christ” Today we will look at “The Beloved Disciple” John. The Apostle John is one of the greatest characters that we will read about in the Word Of God.
In the past few weeks we have seen several examples of what not to do! We have witnessed the errors of Judas, Joseph & Peter. Today we do not have a perfect example of a disciple of Christ, but we do have a positive one. John along with his brother James were the “Sons of Thunder” John was a fisherman by trade. John was influenced by the ministry of John The Baptist. John was sought out and called by Jesus Christ to be a disciple
I would like to look at some of the highlights from John’s life and consider the thought “Faithful Disciples Of Christ”
The first thought that I would like to consider is:
I. Faithful Disciples Are Surrendered - Matthew 4:21 And going on from thence, he saw other two brethren, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in a ship with Zebedee their father, mending their nets; and he called them. 22 And they immediately left the ship and their father, and followed him.
John didn’t just “accept” Jesus as the Messiah. He surrendered his life to Him!
Jesus would later explain the surrender involved in a true disciple’s life “If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. 25 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it”. Matthew 16:24
A. He left his job - He was a fisherman. This was his profession.
B. He left his family - John & his brother James left the family business. They went away and left their daddy with broken nets in his hand.
C. He left his home - Following Jesus brought much uncertainty. It was un-chartered territory for these men. It was a risk that took them out of their comfort zone.
Becoming a faithful disciple begins with SURRENDER! I believe that this is why we see so few “faithful disciples of Christ” You must understand that there is more involved in the Christian walk than simply “accepting Jesus as Savior” You, like John must fully surrender yourself to Jesus!Being a faithful disciple will require you to step out of your comfort zone.
1) It may require you to leave some things behind - “Deny yourself”
2) It may require you to lift some things up - “Take up your cross daily”
3) It may require you to live some things out - “Follow Jesus”
The Christian life is more than a one time decision; it is a daily walk with Jesus Christ. Along with surrender comes sacrifice. As I mentioned, There are some things that you may have to leave behind in order to be a “faithful disciple of Christ”
John addressed this in his later writings - 1 John 2:15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. 17 And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.
Not loving the world and the things that are in it is something that doesn’t come easy to us!
We find an account in the book of Luke where several people had difficulty leaving certain things behind in order to follow Jesus - Luke 9:57 ¶And it came to pass, that, as they went in the way, a certain man said unto him, Lord, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest. 58 And Jesus said unto him, Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head. 59 And he said unto another, Follow me. But he said, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father. 60 Jesus said unto him, Let the dead bury their dead: but go thou and preach the kingdom of God. 61 And another also said, Lord, I will follow thee; but let me first go bid them farewell, which are at home at my house. 62 And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.