Summary: To be a disciple of Jesus, we must imitate him in our lives. This lesson gives us a brief look at the Rabbi, Jesus.

1. Walk This Way:

2. Jesus called disciples to follow him -- Matthew 4.18-22

3. Jesus continues to call disciples

4. Do we understand what it means to be disciples of Jesus?

Responses from comment cards given to the staff members at Bridger Wilderness Area, Wyoming, 1996:

* Trails need to be reconstructed. Please avoid building trails that go uphill.

* Too many bugs and leeches and spiders and spider webs. Please spray the wilderness to rid the areas of these pests.

* Please pave the trails; Chair lifts need to be in some places so that we can get to wonderful views without having to hike to them.

* The coyotes made too much noise last night and kept me awake. Please eradicate these annoying animals.

* Escalators would help on steep uphill sections.

* A MacDonald's would be nice at the trailhead.

* Too many rocks in the mountains. Citation: Mike Neifert, Light and Life (February 1997), p. 27

These comments and complaints indicate that the people who made them do not really understand what it means to stay in a "wilderness area." They were looking for something convenient and comfortable, but not truly a wilderness experience. In a similar way, may not understand what it means to be disciples of Jesus.

5. Beginning a short series on discipleship and we begin by looking to our leader

I. WHY Do We Follow Jesus? [Levels of Leadership by John Maxwell

A. Level #1 -- Position -- Follow because we HAVE to, not necessarily WANT to

1. Duty; obligation -- externals

2. Title -- 13 You call me Teacher and Lord, and you are right, for so I am. 14 If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another's feet. John 13.13-14

3. [2nd LT.; Dictator

B. Level #2 -- Permission -- Follow because we WANT to

1. More internal; relaxing control

2. Matthew 8.19-20 -- 19 And a scribe came up and said to him, "Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go." 20 And Jesus said to him, "Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head."

C. Level #3 -- Production -- Results based; Follow for what he has done for the Group (Israel/World)

1. Lamb of God

2. Messiah -- anticipating Roman overthrow

3. Miracle Man -- healer; provider; Teacher

D. Level #4 --People Development -- Reproducing Self in Others; Follow for what is done for the individual

1. Demoniac -- Luke 8.38 -- 38 The man from whom the demons had gone begged that he might be with him,

2. Disciples' Loyalty -- "We must obey God rather than men. Acts 5.29

E. Level #5 -- Pinnacle -- Following out of Respect for WHO he is and WHAT he does

1. Expectation of Messiah -- represent the history of Israel -- Out of Egypt; Baptism -- Red Sea and entrance into the Land; Manna and feeding 5000; temptation in wilderness

2. Mashiach-El (Messiah-God) -- Matthew 16.18

a. Anointed King to restore the Rule of God in the lives of men

b. Leader of the Kingdom of Heaven -- Present -- KoH IS like; is IN your midst

II. HOW Do We Follow Jesus?

A saying of the Rabbis: Pirkei Avot 1.4 Yosi ben Yoezer of Tzeredah and Yosi ben Yochanan of Jerusalem received the Torah from them. Yosi ben Yoezer of Tzeredah said: Let your house be a meetinghouse for the sages and sit amid the dust of their feet and drink in their words with thirst.

A. Open Our Homes to Jesus -- Mary and Martha -- Luke 10.38-42

B. Sit in the Dust of the Feet of Jesus

1. Martha's frustration with Mary -- desire to drink in the words of Jesus for the purpose of imitating the Rabbi (1 Corinthians 11.1)

2. Dusty feet due to extensive travel on dust-covered roads

3. Origin of foot washing for hospitality and hygiene

C. Make Disciples

Another saying of the Rabbis: Pierkei Avot 1.1 Moses received the Torah from Sinai and transmitted it to Joshua; Joshua to the elders; the elders to the prophets; and the prophets handed it down to the men of the Great Assembly. They said three things: Be deliberate in judgment, raise up many disciples, and make a fence around the Torah.

1. Jesus was compelled to make disciples

2. WE are commissioned to make disciples -- Matthew 28.18-20

a. More than converts

b. Rabbis wanted imitators, not admirers

3. Chain Reaction -- 2 Timothy 2.1-2

You then, my child, be strengthened by the grace that is in Christ Jesus,2 and what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.

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