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Summary: The closer we are to Christ, the closer a disciple we are.

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INTRODUCTION

-Q: What do you think of when you think of the disciples in scripture?

-We likely think of twelve guys

-Q: What was Jesus’ last command to his followers?

-Matthew 28:19

-It wasn’t a matter of making converts

-That’s God’s job

-Our job is to take those that He has changed and help them continue the process of becoming all that God would have them to be

-In actuality, even As we are discipling others, we are still disciples

-The learning never ends, or at least shouldn’t

-Christ ministered to many people during the three years of His ministry on earth

-His goal was to make disciples of them

-A disciple is simply a follower or pupil of a teacher, leader or philosophy

-In essence, anyone who learns from the words of another would be a disciple of them

-Tonight, we are going to see 5 different groups of people that Christ ministered to in scripture

-The goal will be for you to determine which group you most identify with

-We see the first two groups in Luke 6:17

I. Multitude

-Luke 6:19

-Feeding Of The 5,000

-These would be those who are curious in Jesus

-They think His words are intriguing

-They think His actions are amazing

-Yet, they are not personally moved by them

-They are not even sure they believe them

-They doubt their validity

-They pick and choose what they want to believe is truth

-Relativism

-The worst and most insidious lies are those that contain just a shred of truth

-We see the multitudes still today in the modern church

-Crusades

-Megachurches

-You can get lost in a megachurch

-The multitudes are simply curious about Jesus

-For some, that curiosity turns into belief which leads them into the next grouping

II. Crowd

-These are those who see the truth of Jesus

-But have not chosen to follow Him

-They go to hear Him speak whenever He is in town

-Auditing A College Course

-There are many reasons they do so

-Because they have a heart for the truth

-Because they have a need

-Because they are fearful

-Of their circumstances

-Of their deserved punishment

-This is where many altar seekers fall

-They are too busy with their daily lives to follow Him

-Let me bury my dead

-Jesus said, “Let the dead bury the dead”

-Let me look at my new field

-Let me spend time with my new wife

-These people today would say such things as

-I have family activities to tend to

-My job won’t let me be active for the Lord

-I want to enjoy life while I have the energy to do so

III. Disciples So-Called

-There are 70 + in this group

-Luke 10:1

-These are those who follow Jesus to a certain extent

-But not all the time

-They are “Part-Time Disciples”

-The problem here is, they choose when to follow and when not to

A. They follow when convenient

1. If they have nothing else to do

-Which is seldom

2. If it is on their way

B. They follow when convicted

IV. Apostles

-12

-Luke 6:13

-These are the ones we often associate as being disciples

-But, as we have already seen, they were not the only disciples

-There was something special about them

-We read about them consistently through the gospels and beyond

-The reason is this: these are those who have left all to follow Christ

-It didn’t need to be limited to twelve

-Rich Young Ruler - Matthew 18:22

A. They gave up everything for Jesus

B. They spent time at His feet constantly

C. They served where Christ directed them

-This was especially true of them after Pentecost

V. Inner Circle

-Luke 8:51

-Peter, James & John

-Transfiguration

-After The Arrest

-These were those who had given all to follow Christ and had become the closest to Him and the best learners during their time of training

A. They were the most willing

B. They were the most teachable

-And boy did they need teaching

-Especially Peter, as Bake pointed out for us last evening

C. They were the most dedicated

CONCLUSION

--So, which group are you in?

-I know we all would like to be in the inner circle

-However, I know it is likely that few of us are

-Here’s the good news, your group can be changed

-As we change our familiarity with Christ, we change the group we are in

-I Have Decided To Follow Jesus

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