Summary: As Christians’ we are called to follow the leader - Jesus Christ. Who will lead us to a life of happiest, blessing, and service for him.
Follow the Leader
When I was a boy I used to play Follow the Leader with my friends. The leader would seek to outdo the other boys in the stunts that he was able to perform. The leader might climb a tree and act like a monkey, swinging from one limb to another. If we were swimming, the leader might dive into deep water or swim across deep water or dive from a high diving board. Those who were playing the game with him would follow until they “chickened out.” It was an exciting and dangerous game. Sometimes the leader would act in a very foolish manner, and others, recognizing his foolishness, would refuse to follow. Some have found themselves in great difficulty in a game like this by following the wrong kind of leader.
Have you ever thought of a Christian as one who was following the leader? Jesus Christ, at the beginning of his ministry, told his disciples, “Follow me.” On another occasion, when Jesus was passing by the place where the publicans were collecting taxes for the Roman government, he came face to face with a young man named Matthew and said to him, “Follow me. And he arose and followed him.” At the conclusion of his ministry, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “You must follow me.” One of the best ways to think of the Christian life is to think of it in terms of following the Leader – Jesus Christ. Someone is bound to ask, “Where will Jesus Christ lead us?”
I. Jesus will lead you to dedicate yourself to the will of God. (Luke 2:49)
a. In the Gospel of Luke, we read how that at the age of twelve Jesus visited the temple in Jerusalem.
i. He was concerned about doing the will of God even at this age.
ii. Later he said to Mary and Joseph, “Do you not know that I must be about my Father’s business?”
b. One does not have to wait until one is full grown before becoming involved in the work of God.
i. In early childhood you can decide to let Jesus Christ be your leader and your Lord, and you can be about your Father’s business.
II. Jesus will lead you into a right relationship with your parents. (Luke 2:52)
a. We read in the Scriptures how that after Jesus had made this trip to Jerusalem, he returned to Nazareth and was subject to his parents.
i. Luke’s gospel tells us that Jesus “increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.” (Luke 2:52)
b. God hold parents responsible for the manner in which they conduct themselves toward their children and for providing guidance for their children.
i. God wants parents to be his helpers in teaching children the way of life.
ii. God holds you responsible for your reactions and response to your parents.
iii. If you will follow the leadership of Jesus Christ, he will lead you into right attitudes and into a right relationship with your parents.
III. Jesus will lead you in regular habits of worship (Luke 4:16)
a. Soon after Christ began his public ministry, he made a return visit to Nazareth.
i. Luke’s gospel tells us, “And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up for to read” (Luke 4:16).
b. As you need food to supply energy for your body, so you need worship for the growth of your spiritual life.
i. Christ will lead you in both public worship and private worship.
ii. He will lead you to the house of prayer and worship every Lord’s day and to special activities during the week.
iii. Christ will also lead you in private worship as you study your Bible day by day and as you talk with God in prayer concerning the needs and problems of your life.
IV. Jesus will lead you to give yourself for others (Acts 10:38)
a. Jesus “went about doing good.”
i. He believed that the highest possible happiness was found in the giving of self in service to others.
ii. Consequently, he gave himself fully and freely in order to be helpful to others.
b. Jesus gave encouragement to those who were distressed.
i. He gave hope to those who were depressed.
ii. He gave food to the hungry.
iii. He gave guidance to the uncertain.
iv. He gave comfort to the grieving.
v. Finally, he gave his life fully on the cross for us.
vi. Jesus believed with all his heart that his highest destiny was to be found in the giving of himself completely to God for others.
c. Christ will lead you to define your purpose for living in terms of the service that you could render to other people, rather than in terms of how much you could get out of other people.