Summary: Becoming a Christ follower is conditional. We have the choice to say, “Yes” or “No” to becoming a disciple of Jesus. Jesus said, “If anyone will come after me…” Jesus gives the invitation and then leaves the choice up to us.
The Three “Cs” of Discipleship
During my twelve years of ministry here the mission of the Willow Vale Church has been: “Bringing people to Jesus, loving, equipping and sending them out to make more and better disciples.”
Jesus gave us the mission and purpose of the church clear.
Luke 19:10 Jesus said, “For the son of man came to seek and to save what was lost.”
In His great commission Jesus said: “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:18-20
Throughout His ministry Jesus was involved in making disciples. Jesus called people in all walks of life to surrender all to Him and become a fully devoted disciple.
For the past twelve years we are used many different ways to reach out in the love of Christ and call people to become followers of Jesus.
On one Saturday we handed out 500 packets of Light bulbs with a note declaring that Jesus is the Light of the World.
We did several events showing acts of kindness expressing God’s love without any strings attached: washing car windshields of the three recovery groups meeting at the church. We did several cook outs for the recovery groups.
We did five prayer walks in our neighborhood. We did a religious survey of 500 homes asking two or three questions: How long have you lived here? If you attend a church what would kind of ministries would you want the church to have? How can our church better serve this community?
For the Alpha studies and dinner we visited 2,500 homes giving invitations to attend the Alpha studies. We formed five groups at the church and one in Morgan Hill. Several people came to Christ and were baptized as a result of the Alpha outreach.
We handed out cherry covered chocolates door to door to our neighbors around the church.
We handed out the Jesus video to our neighbors around the church. We have handed out several hundred of the videos.
We have invested thousands of dollars in outreach during the past 12 years.
I have had the privilege of sharing the good news of Jesus with scores of people during the past 12 years. I’ve shared Bible studies in homes, at places of work, over lunch in restaurants and at Starbucks on many occasions. I’ve had the privilege of baptizing many of you who have made confession of faith in the Lord.
What does it mean to be a disciple of Jesus?
All who follow Jesus with all their heart are called disciples. A disciple is a life long learner.
Becoming a Christ follower is conditional. We have the choice to say, “Yes” or “No” to becoming a disciple of Jesus. Jesus said, “If anyone will come after me…” Jesus gives the invitation and then leaves the choice up to us.
A disciple is one in training. A disciple is teachable and constantly studying to himself or herself approved unto God. The key word go becoming a disciple of Jesus is “obedience.” The call of Jesus is a demanding call. If a person says he wants to follow Jesus and continue to live as he is living, is fooling himself.
There are three “Cs” of discipleship. The three “Cs” represent the three levels of discipleship.
I. The “C” of the Curious.
Some of Christ’s followers were just curious. Crowds followed Jesus out of curiosity and for what they could get from Jesus.
John 6:1-2, “Sometime after this, Jesus crossed to the far shore of the Sea of Galilee (that is, the Sea of Tiberias (Galilee), and a great crowd of people followed him because they saw the miraculous signs he had performed on the sick.” Great crowds followed Jesus because they were looking for a great show. They wanted to see more miraculous signs.
The curious crowds followed Jesus and when they got hungry Jesus had compassion on them and provided a great banquet of all the fish and chips they could eat. The free lunch came from the multiplication of a boy’s lunch of 5 barley loaves of bread and 2 small fish. 5,000 men were fed plus women and children. (John 6:10)
Jesus revealed the true motive of the curious crowd: John 6:26-27, “I tell you the truth, you are looking for me, not because you saw miraculous signs but because you ate the loaves and fishes and had your fill.”
For the curious crowd “seeing” is not, believing. They refuse to accept the teachings of Jesus. They are just curious. By their association with Jesus they may claim to be believers, but they are Christian in name only. They main aim is personal gain. Take away the benefits of associating with Christians and all you see is the dust left from their quick get away.