Becoming a Real Apprentice-Learner of Jesus and Finding The Path of True Christianity
Originally for Sunday Morning 1/6/08; 12/28/07; 5/18/08; 5/30/09; 8/19/09; (7/24/10); 10/17/11; 10/19/11; 1/29/12-1/30/12; 2/17/12; 4/10/12-4/11/12; 5/20/12; 9/15/12; 9/27/12; 7/22/13-7/23/13
Compare: Basics Of Salvation
The MP3 of this teaching should be available at:
(The MP3 is only a brief overview of all the details that you can see here below)
If you are an American christian beware! The path that Jesus trod and set for us and our salvation is one of discipleship rather than the theoretical and shallow commitment of converts that we see in most churches in Westernized culture. If we dont follow this extreme and unpopular path that Jesus called being His apprentice learner (or disciple), we only have the Broadway to Hell and destruction as our alternative!
Avail yourself to know and understand this eternal distinction called Discipleship.
(1) The Hebrew ָלַמד (lāmaḏ) is literally to goad, that is, (by implication) to teach (the rod being an Oriental incentive) (Strongs on H3925), or (depending on grammar) to learn. Lāmaḏ (H3925) naturally produces ִלמּוּד (limmûḏ), (H3928) which is basically someone who is taught.*
[* Technical Grammar Note: the first word is an action verb and the second is a descriptive adjective]
(2) The Greek μανθάνω (manthanō), (G3129) very simply means to learn, and this produces μαθητής (mathētḗs), (G3101) a learner. But to be a learner in ancient cultures usually implied the seriousness of an apprentice learner.
[Strongs: G3129: to learn (in any way); G3101: a learner, that is, pupil ]
(4) The Bible is very clear that becoming an apprentice learner (that is, discipleship) is the only way to heaven, and it is not some advanced form of christianity, but that it is indeed, the one and only form of ancient, original, historical, True, Biblical Christianity:
Mat_28:19-20; Mar_16:20 go make disciples/ go apprentice people as learners (etc.)/ He that believes and is baptized shall be saved (Mar_16:16 CAB)
Act_11:26 ...And the disciples were first called Christians in Antioch. (CAB)
It is clear that there is no difference from a real Biblical Christian and a disciple. We ought to reject the common heresy of easy-believeism which insults the entire body of Truth by implying that christians need not necessarily be full-fledged disciples in order to go to heaven, as though a person could be saved from eternal hell without truly and completely forsaking everything to follow Jesus and becoming His extreme and devoted learner through those He sent them (see Matthew and Mark referenced previously).
(5) For a Summary we could almost say that a disciple simply means a student, but this means so much more than something as shallow as intellectual instruction as we are prone to think of it. To those in the Bible, truly learning is more like apprenticeship, and this is why we use the word disciple, avoiding the shallow assumptions Westernized thinkers often connect to learning. This Divine apprenticeship is the only way to follow Jesus and be saved from sin and hell unto eternal glory with Him forever.
· Is training in righteousness by a real man or woman of God to fully obey and follow Jesus.
· Is a mentoring process to become a man or woman of God.
· Means being committed to this process of mentoring and training.
· Is harder than you ever expected, and infinitely more rewarding than you ever dreamed.
· Filters and separates the modern christian from someone who is REALLY following Jesus.
· Weeds out the fake and shallow, from the truly committed.
· When someone is ready to commit to discipleship, thats when you know theyre really ready to commit to following Jesus.
- Do these things describe you?
· Making disciples is sealing the deal to call people to absolute and total commitment to live according to the eternal mandates of the Bible.
· Saying, I dont need training is saying, I dont need Jesus way of getting to God You are rejecting Jesus only provision for salvation because Hes the One that ordained discipleship: Mat_28:18-20 (Make disciples) Luk_10:16; Mat_10:40; Joh_13:20 (Whoever listens to you, listens to me).
· Humanism says, I worship God in my own way and I dont need anyone to help me know God I trust my own heart to guide me to him.
Are you a follower of Jesus and the Bible (including those He sent you) or are you an independent follower of Humanism?
Pro_14:12 CAB There is a way which seems to be right with men, but the ends of it reach to the depths of hell.
Also see: Psa_51:5 (naturally corrupt); Ecc_9:3 (full of evil); Mar_7:21-23 (you sin because theres sin in your heart)
· According to the Bible, we stand in desperate need of Jesus discipleship, and He has ordained that this training be done through submitting to other people that He has put in a persons life as ambassadors of His proclamation (such as, Apostles, Overseers, Leaders, Mentors, etc.).
· Truly, we ALL stand in desperate need the question is: are we going to walk in foolish self-confidence relying on ourselves, or are we going to acknowledge our need and embrace discipleship?
Jer_13:23 CAB If the Ethiopian H3569/ G128 shall change his skin, or the leopardess her spots, then shall you be able to do good, having learned H3928/ G3129 [MT: למדי (limmûd); LXX: μεμαθηκότες (memathēkotes) that is, having been discipled/ trained] to do evil.
[Ethiopian (H3569/ G128) Hebrew (H3569) כושׁי (kûshîy*) i.e. A Cushite/ a descendant of Cush, son of Ham (Gen_10:6); Greek (G128) Αἰθίοψ** (Aithiops) literally means someone with a burnt (αἰθί) face (οψ) speaking of the adjusted skin color of their face (same as in Num_12 and Act_8:27); From all of this we eventually get Ethiopian; i.e. the African descendants of Cush]
· The leopardess is obviously not sinning by having her spots, just like the African is not tainted by the uniqueness of the color of his face, but from these analogies we see the deep set nature that describes discipleship.
· When youve TRULY been discipled it becomes cemented in you as a solid part of your nature!
· When youve TRULY been discipled it becomes as pronounced as the skin on your face!
· Mat_7:16-23 You will know them by their fruits
· Is discipleship where you are going? Or are you drifting spiritually? (Youre not going to get godly by accident.)
· Ultimately, whoever you are learning from and imitating, you are being discipled by these same people.
The Disciples of John: Mat_11:2; Mar_2:18; Luk_5:33; Luk_7:18; Joh_3:25
Said to be of Moses: Joh_9:28
The disciples of the Pharisees: Mar_2:18
If you are a disciple and dont understand, then you will ask questions as they did: Mat_13:10; Mat_13:36; Mat_15:12; Mat_24:1; Mat_24:3; Mat_26:17
It is Not Forced Externally
Act_2:41-42 KJV Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls. 42 And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.
Rth_1:15-16 WEB She said, Behold, your sister-in-law is gone back to her people, and to her god: return you after your sister-in-law. 16 Ruth said, "Don't entreat me to leave you, and to return from following after you, for where you go, I will go; and where you lodge, I will lodge; your people shall be my people, and your God my God;
We can see the desperation and determined eagerness of Ruth in this example. Are you like this? Do you see truth from men or women of God like this? If you do not know any real men or women of God (which is almost always the case in this age) are you desperately seeking them out and crying out to God to send you help so you can make it, or are you doing just fine sitting by yourself on your own spiritual island? Answering this question determines if you are like the blessed Ruth or if you are walking in the shameful way of the cursed children of rebellion, self-sufficiency, and competence.
This is what real salvation looks like:
Zec_8:23 CAB We will go with you; for we have heard that God is with you.
Elijah and Elisha
2Ki_2:1-15 CAB And it came to pass, when the Lord was about to take Elijah with a whirlwind into heaven, that Elijah and Elisha went out of Gilgal. 2 And Elijah said to Elisha, Stay here, please; for God has sent me to Bethel. And Elisha said, As the Lord lives and your soul lives, I will not leave you; so they came to Bethel. 3 And the sons of the prophets who were in Bethel came to Elisha, and said to him, Do you know that the Lord this day is going to take away your master from over you? And he said, Yes, I know it; be silent. 4 And Elijah said to Elisha, Stay here, please; for the Lord has sent me to Jericho. And he said, As the Lord lives and as your soul lives, I will not leave you. And they came to Jericho. 5 And the sons of the prophets who were in Jericho drew near to Elisha, and said to him, Do you know that the Lord this day is going to take away your master from over you? And he said, Yes, I know it; hold your peace. 6 And Elijah said to him, Stay here please, for the Lord has sent me to the Jordan. And Elisha said, As the Lord lives and as your soul lives, I will not leave you. And they both went on. 7 And fifty men of the sons of the prophets went also, and they stood opposite afar off; and both stood on the bank of the Jordan. 8 And Elijah took his mantle, and wrapped it together, and struck the water, and the water was divided on this side and on that side, and they both went over on dry ground. 9 And it came to pass while they were crossing over, that Elijah said to Elisha, Ask what I shall do for you before I am taken up from you. And Elisha said, Let there be a double portion of your spirit upon me. 10 And Elijah said, You have asked a hard thing: if you shall see me when I am taken up from you, then shall it be so to you; and if not, it shall not be so. 11 And it came to pass as they were going, they went on talking; and behold, a chariot of fire appeared, with horses of fire, and it separated the two of them; and Elijah was taken up in a whirlwind into heaven. 12 And Elisha saw, and cried, Father, father, the chariot of Israel, and its horseman! [i.e. Elisha laments the fact that God is removing Elijah from Israel] And he saw him no more. And he took hold of his garments, and tore them into two pieces. 13 And he took up the mantle of Elijah, which fell from off him upon Elisha; and Elisha returned, and stood upon the brink of the Jordan; 14 and he took the mantle of Elijah, which fell from off him, and struck the water, and said, Where is the Lord God of Elijah? And he struck the waters, and they were divided this way and that; and Elisha went over. 15 And the sons of the prophets who were in Jericho on the opposite side saw him, and said, The spirit of Elijah has rested upon Elisha. And they came to meet him, and bowed down before him to the ground.
Do you see the desperate, determined, eager posture of Elisha toward Elijah to get the same spiritual greatness he had from God? Does this describe your attitude toward discipleship? Are you a real, Biblical follower of Jesus? Do you need the greatness Elijah has, or are you cursing yourself on your own path of worthlessness, dull-heartedness, and self-sufficiency?
Joh_6:45 WEB It is written in the prophets, 'They will all be taught by God.' Therefore everyone who hears from the Father, and has learned [μαθωνG3129 i.e. been discipled], comes to me.
(Also in Mat_11:27-30 come to me learn from me)
If you hear God in your own prayer closet, then you will come to those God has sent on earth.
Mr. Too Quick
Mat_8:19-20 WEB A scribe came, and said to him, "Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go." 20 Jesus said to him, "The foxes have holes, and the birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head."
Mr. Too Slow
Mat_8:21-23 Another of his disciples said to him, "Lord, allow me first to go and bury my father." 22 But Jesus said to him, "Follow me, and leave the dead to bury their own dead." 23 When he got into a boat, his disciples followed him.
Are you forsaking everything and following Him, or stalling in your own path and plans for life?
The Rich Young Ruler
Mat_19:16-30; Mar_10:17-31; Luk_18:18-30
Mar_10:17a WEB As he was going out into the way
Luk_18:18 WEB A certain ruler
Mar_10:17b ran to him, knelt before him, and said
Mat_19:16 WEB "Good teacher, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?
Mar_10:17c that I may inherit eternal life?"
Jesus lays the Law on him: Mat_19:17-20; Mar_10:18-20; Luk_18:19-21
Mat_19:20 WEB The young man said to him, "All these things I have observed from my youth. What do I still lack? [i.e. that I may inherit eternal life]
Mar_10:21 WEB Jesus looking at him loved him, and said to him, "One thing you lack
Luk_18:22 WEB "You still lack one thing
Mat_19:21 KJV If you want to be complete [τέλειος5046]
Mar_10:21 WEB Go, sell whatever you have, and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me, taking up the cross."
Mat_19:22 KJV But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions.
Luk_18:24 KJV And when Jesus saw that he was very sorrowful
Mar_10:23-27 WEB Jesus looked around, and said to his disciples*, "How difficult it is for those who have riches to enter into the Kingdom of God!" 24 The disciples* were amazed at his words. But Jesus answered again, "Children, how hard is it for those who trust in riches to enter into the Kingdom of God! 25 It is easier for a camel to go through a needle's eye than for a rich man to enter into the Kingdom of God." 26 They were exceedingly astonished, saying to him, "Then who can be saved?" 27 Jesus, looking at them, said, "With men it is impossible, but not with God, for all things are possible with God.
* Note: his disciples did not include The Rich Young Ruler who had walked away, nor will it include you if you do not forsake everything to follow Him (Luk_14:25-35).
Exclusivity (Only 2 directions!)
Joh_14:6-7 WEB Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father, except through me. 7 If you had known me, you would have known my Father also
Joh_6:66-69 WEB At this, many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him. 67 Jesus said therefore to the twelve, "You don't also want to go away, do you?" 68 Simon Peter answered him, "Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words of eternal life. 69 We have come to believe and know that you are the Christ, the Son of the living God."
Discipleship still works just like this, even unto this very day! Jesus really is our true and faithful example of training people as apprentices. So do you want to leave also, or do you need discipleship more than your very life?
Also See These Examples of Jesus Disciples Following Him:
Mat_5:1; Mat_9:14; Mat_13:10; Mat_13:36; Mat_14:15; Mat_15:12; Mat_24:1; Mat_24:3; Mat_26:17; Mar_6:35; Luk_6:17; Luk_22:39;
From all of these examples, Notice that
· Real Disciples always FOLLOW Jesus
· There are Only Two Directions you can go If youre not following Him, where are you going?
· Discipleship is the only way to follow Jesus to heaven, and it is clear that your own way leads straight to eternal hell.
The Narrow Gate Only A FEW Are Saved
Note: This basic translation is in a very early (unfinished) stage
Mat_7:13-27 Jos.Trans. Enter by the narrow gateG4439 [πύλης (pulēs)]: because wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leads to destruction, and there are manyG4183 [πολλοί (poloi)] who go in by it: 14 Because narrow is the gate, and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are a few who find it. 15 Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. 16 You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thorns, or figs from thistles? 17 Even so every good tree bears [lit. does] good fruit; but a bad tree bears [lit. does] bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear [lit. do] bad fruit, nor a bad tree bear [lit. do] good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear [lit. do] good fruit is cut down, and thrown into the fire. 20 So then, by their fruits you will know them. 21 Not everyone who says to me, Lord, Lord, will enter into the kingdom of the heavens; but he who does [see v. 16-20] the will of my Father which is in the heavens. 22 ManyG4183 [πολλοί (poloi) see v. 13] will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, havent we prophesied in your name, and in your name cast out demons, and in your name done many powerful works? 23 And then will I declare to them, I never knew you: depart from me, you workers of lawlessness. 24 Everyone then: whoever hears these words of mine, and does them [see v. 16 onward], I will compare him to a wise man who built his house upon the rock: 25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and fell upon that house; and it did not fall, because it had been founded upon the rock. 26 And everyone who hears these words of mine, and does not do them, will be compared to a foolish man who built his house upon the sand: 27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house, and it fell, and great was its fall.
Including the forms from the alternate pollos; (singular) much (in any respect) or (plural) many; neuter (singular) as adverb largely; neuter (plural) as adverb or noun often, mostly, largely: - abundant, + altogether, common, + far (passed, spent), (+ be of a) great (age, deal, -ly, while), long, many, much, oft (-en [-times]), plenteous, sore, straitly. Compare G4118, G4119.
Probably from the same as G4171, or perhaps from G4183; a town (properly with walls, of greater or less size): - city.
Apparently a primary word; a gate, that is, the leaf or wing of a folding entrance (literally or figuratively): - gate.
Luk_13:23-24 WEB One said to him, "Lord, are they few who are saved?" He said to them, 24 "Strive to enter in by the narrow door, for many, I tell you, will seek to enter in, and will not be able. (Read: Luk_13:23-30)
1Pe_4:18 And if the righteous is scarcely* saved, where shall the ungodly and sinner appear?
[* μόλις with painful difficulty, as if by gaining wounds (i.e. μώλωπι)]
· Somehow we think that even if we dont follow Jesus we will still somehow end up at the same destination in Heaven.
· Jesus said there are only two paths (above, & Mat). Either youre with Him or youre against Him! Broad or narrow are your two choices!
· Which extreme are you on? - If you think youre in-between, then youre on Broadway.
Mat_6:24 CAB "No one is able to serve two masters; for either he will hate the one, and he will love the other, or else he will be devoted to the one, and he will despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.
Mat_12:30 CAB He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters.
Rev_3:15-16 CAB "I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were cold or hot. 16 So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will vomit you out of my mouth.
- People ask, Are you saved? Real question: Are you burning for Jesus? (Otherwise you are spit out).
· REAL learners (disciples) look and act like their masters (Mat_10:25; Act_4:13)
· Not, this attitude that says, We can go to movies (which Jesus would never watch) and dress how we want (when neither Jesus nor any of the matriarchs would never dress that way) and we can still be happy christians on our way to heaven (see Rom_6:18-23 being free from righteousness means not being saved; Gal_6:7-8 Investing the flesh)
· Students of Jesus obey Him as Lord (Rom_10:9; and Scriptures above)
· You know youre not learning a thing when your life-style stays the same (2Co_3:18 Glory to Glory; Pro_4:18 brighter shinning light)
· If youre not changing and growing in righteousness and holiness, then youre dying in sin.
The ONLY Way to Follow Him; This shows where you are really going
Luk_14:25-35 KJB And great crowds went with him and he turned and said to them, 26 If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brothers, and sisters, and even his very own soul, his life as well, he cannot be my disciple. 27 And whoever does not bear his cross and come after me cannot be my disciple. 28 Because which of you wanting to build a tower doesn't sit down first and count the cost if he has the means to finish? 29 That it doesn't happen after he has laid the foundation and is not able to finish that all who see it begin to mock him 30 saying, This man began to build, and was not able to finish. 31 Or what king going to engage another king in war doesn't sit down first and consider whether he is able with ten thousand to meet him who comes against him with twenty thousand? 32 But if not, while the other is still a great way off he sends a delegationG4242 and asks for conditions of peace. 33 So in the same way, everyone of you who does not forsake everything that he has cannot be my disciple. 34 Salt is good: but if the salt has lost its flavor how will it be seasoned? 35 It is neither fit for the land nor for the dunghill, but they cast it out. He who has ears to hear, let him hear.
G4242 - A "delegation," in Greek, "πρεσβειαν" which is made up of elders.
· If youre not His disciple it doesnt mean youre a second-rate christian
· If youre not His disciple it means you are not a christian at all! (i.e. verses 34-35).
Note: This basic translation is in a very early (unfinished) stage
Mat_10:32-39 Jos.Trans. So any and everyone who confesses3670, (1722) me in front of men, I will also confess him in front of my Father who is in the heavens. 33 But whoever will deny me in front of men, I will also deny him in front of my Father who is in the heavens. 34 Dont think that I came to send peace on earth: I have not come to send peace, but a sword. 35 Because I have come to set a man against his own father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter in law against her mother in law, 36 and a man's enemies will be those of his own household. 37 He that loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and he that loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me, 38 and he that does not take his cross and follow after me is not worthy of me. 39 He that finds his soul, his life, will lose it. But he that loses his soul, his life, for my sake will find it.
G3670 This speaks of confessing together, meaning, joining with Jesus in front of men
G1722 This unity in Jesus is multiplied by the use of the unrepresented word εν 1722 (en).
Literally and functionally: Whoever confesses together [i.e. with me], in me, in front of men
The Dedication of Discipleship
Act_2:41-44 KJV Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls. 42 And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. 43 And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. 44 And all that believed were together, and had all things common 46 And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house
(Also compare: Luk_24:53; Act_1:14, Act_3:1, Act_5:42)
· Making Converts? Not at all! Were talking disciples, and not just numbers!
· This is the natural response of someone who truly finds Jesus!
· And most churches cant even get people to stop watching sinful movies
· But you can tell when someone gets it! You dont even have to tell them to throw out their bad music
· Are you wondering why you cant get your life right? There is a reason why
· Do you get the idea yet that Jesus is demanding ALL if youre going to follow Him?
· You must Truly Follow Jesus by Paying the Price and submit to the Commitment of discipleship
When we speak of committing to discipleship it is important to be sure to know what I mean. I do not mean going to church or Bible study per se, but I mean being eagerly devoted to gaining the spiritual truth and favor that God has worked in another person no matter what the cost.
In other words, when someone says, I want to get somewhere in following Jesus they often are actually adding to this, I want you to help me, but Im not willing to fully commit to getting what you got. The problem and the limitation comes when people say with their actions, I want you to tell me a solution that will work and after I try it, I might believe you have something from God if it works. And I want what information you know and I want it to help me, but I am not willing to commit to you or trust you. But Biblical Discipleship simply never works that way. This level of non-sense is fool hearty and unbelieving! We actually need to leave this shameful perversion in order to even begin discipleship. This is mainly because Jesus said,
Mat_12:39-40 CAB "An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. 40 For just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.
But if anyone has any favor from God, the only way anyone else will be benefited by it is if those in need believe the one whom God has approved of, that they have what they need. Committing to discipleship means committing to gain the favor that God has entrusted to another person, desperately crying out for what they have which you need for your own life and salvation:
Act_11:13-14 CAB And he related to us how he had seen the angel in his house, standing and saying to him, 'Send men to Joppa, and send for Simon whose surname is Peter, 14 'who will speak words to you by which you and all your household shall be saved.'
Act_10:33 CAB "Therefore immediately I sent to you, and you have done well to come. Now then we are all present before God, to hear all the things having been commanded you by God."
Rth_1:16 CAB And Ruth said, Entreat me not to leave you, or to return from following you; for wherever you go, I will go, and wherever you lodge, I will lodge; your people shall be my people, and your God my God.
Gal_4:14 CAB And my trial which was in my flesh you did not despise nor disdain, but as an angel of God you received me, even as Christ Jesus.
1Th_2:13 CAB Because of this we also give thanks to God unceasingly, so that when you received the word of God which you heard from us, you received not the word of men, but just as it truly is, the word of God, which also is at work in you who believe.
(Also see Act_17:10-12)
Act_19:18-19 WEB Many also of those who had believed came, confessing, and declaring their deeds. 19 Many of those who practiced magical arts brought their books together and burned them in the sight of all. They counted the price of them, and found it to be fifty thousand pieces of silver.
It goes without saying that if you are living in any sin you have nothing to do with Biblical Discipleship. Please examine your life and determine whether or not you are a REAL disciple. Make sure that you are not living in sin so that you can qualify as a real learner of Jesus!
[Important Note: See the Bible Study on this topic]
Jesus Said: Lk. 6:43 For a good tree does not produce bad fruit, nor does a bad tree produce good fruit.
Mat. 3:10 And now also the ax is laid at the root of the trees, so that every tree that does not produce good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.
Lk. 6:46 Why do you call me, `Lord, Lord,' and don't do the things which I say?
Jn. 14:15 If you Love Me, keep my commands... 23 ...If anyone loves Me, he will obey my words... 24 He who does not Love me will not obey my words.
The Bible Also Says:
1Jn. 2:4 He who says, "I have come to know him," but does not keep His commands is a liar, and the Truth is not in him.
1Jn. 3:6-10 Whoever remains in Him does not continue to sin. Whoever continues to sin has not seen Him, or known Him. 7 Little children, dont let anyone deceive you: he that does what is right is righteous, just as He is righteous. 8 He that continues to sin is of the devil; because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. For this reason the Son of God was revealed, that He might destroy the works of the devil. 9 Whoever is born of God does not continue to sin; for His seed remains in him: and he cannot go on sinning, because he is born of God. 10 In this the children of God and the children of the devil are revealed: whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God
Here are some short notes pertaining to the very essence and climax of actually doing discipleship when you imitate those people that God has left in your life as ambassadors of truth that you are obligated to imitate!
Let this saying sink
down in your ears! Discipleship is the one
case in life where imitation is the only thing that is really genuine.
Note: this is another of those really important sayings that will save your soul if you let it!
Why is this true? Because the real discipleship of imitating the truth that God has wisely and sovereignly left in ambassadors on earth is the only way you will have a legitimate, valid, correlating copy of the truth of God which is in heaven! Because of this, most people do not need other people to go to heaven, which is why most people are going to hell.
Heb_6:12 WEB that you won't be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherited the promises.
Heb_13:7 WEB Remember your leaders, men who spoke to you the word of God, and considering the results of their conduct, imitate their faith.
1Th_2:12-14 CAB that you would make your walk worthy of God who calls you into His own kingdom and glory. 13 Because of this we also give thanks to God unceasingly, so that when you received the word of God which you heard from us, you received not the word of men, but just as it truly is, the word of God, which also is at work in you who believe. 14 For you, brothers, became imitators of the churches of God which are in Judea in Christ Jesus
Joh_13:20 CAB Most assuredly I say to you, he who receives whomever I send receives Me; and he who receives Me receives Him who sent Me."
Gal_4:13-14 CAB You know that because of weakness in the flesh I preached the gospel to you the former time. 14 And my trial which was in my flesh you did not despise nor disdain, but as an angel of God you received me, even as Christ Jesus.
2Co_8:23 Jesus is the brightness of the glory of God (as said earlier in 2Co_4:4-6 and clearly confirmed in Heb_1:3), and now also His sent out Apostles are the glory of the anointed one. What does that say about how you should receive them?
Dont kid yourself. You do not love Jesus in prayer more than you love Jesus on earth in real disciples and disciplers.
Notice that this love and imitation of faithful people who proclaim truth is real Discipleship. The real reason it does not work today is because we hate Jesus in our apostasy and have had too many bad experiences in our culture with over honoring lost wicked pastors of filthy flesh. But this eager imitation of truth, where people receive preachers of truth just as they would Jesus, works just as much today as it did then in the Bible. The reason this does not seem to work out today is because we have lost people honoring lost pastors, not because the true and faithful example of the Bible has changed!
Our problem is that we hate Jesus and love flesh balls that cannot sustain such a reception because they are clearly not like Jesus or in any way are they really His representatives! No wonder we are let down and hurt when we try to over-trust pastors in our churches today, because we are opening ourselves up and making ourselves vulnerable to ravenous wolves expecting them to operate on us in our own best interest!
We are so afraid of falling into a controlling and abusive cult, but we hypocritically have no concern over falling into damnable heresies and honoring apostate pastors! Real representatives of Jesus can be safely received just as Jesus (as the Scriptures clearly teach). Repent and do what is Biblical and you will no longer have a conflict between you and the example left for us in the Bible.
But we only feel like this is extremely impractical and impossible because we keep propping up false, apostate, counterfeits and will not just be honest and call them out as wolves like we should. If you cannot honor and receive a preacher as you would Jesus Himself then you should not receive him at all as a preacher of truth, because such unbiblical games are worthless exercises that are anything But Biblical discipleship.
Find real proclaimers of truth. Stop pacifying yourself with less than Biblical preachers. Embrace the proclamation of truth with BIBLICAL faithfulness, and reject falsehood with reasonable zeal! This is the only way to safely receive discipleship today, because it is the only solution offered in the Scriptures. There is no other gospel that will save you beyond the Gospel that demands discipleship (compare Mar_16:15-16; Mat_28:19-20; Gal_1:6-9).
1Th_5:12-13 CAB And we request of you, brothers, to recognize those who labor among you, and are over you in the Lord and instruct you, 13 and to regard them beyond all measure [ὑπερεκπερισσ