My warmest greetings, dear readers! I hope that you are all doing well by God’s grace and I am too. Today I would like to talk to you all about being a disciple of Jesus Christ.
The disciples of Christ were the first ones to ever be called “Christians”. Here’s a verse
from Acts, Chapter 11, verse 26:
26And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch. And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.
The disciples of Jesus were probably the most loyal disciples ever to be. We read of how they loved their Master more than anything else in the world, and we read of how they started following Him with no question or complaints, but rather they saw it as a privilege to be under this great Master.
But nowadays, a huge majority of people out there call themselves “Christians”. I find it hard to believe that all of these people love Jesus more than their own lives. There are many people out there that call themselves Christians, and of course, they attend church every Sunday, and loyally attend all the functions of the church and things like that, but they do all of this, not for their love of Christ, but for their love of the church.
They love the attention and friendship and new companionship they can gain from church. They like being a part of something. They want an identity in society. Sadly, (now this is not everyone, just some) some just want to show off their new dress and their new car. They want to be part of the biggest, most famous church sometimes, just for the fame of the name of the church.
Now this may not be the case of everybody out there. But still, there is sadly a large majority of Christians out there that don’t care the least about Christ. And this breaks my heart to see these people go about calling themselves “Christians” when the name was coined in the first place for the loyal and loving disciples of Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ Himself has told in the Bible of who exactly is worthy of being His disciples:
Mathew, Chapter 10, Verses 37-39
Now when I first read this verse, I was very young – about 9 years old, and I was at a Gospel Meeting where my father was preaching, and I remember thinking in heart, that if Jesus Christ disapproves of my love for my parents, then I should stop loving them. I laugh at heart every time I remember this.
Even as a child, I always made sure I put God first, as my parents had always taught me. So when I read this, I thought I should stop loving my parents. But I had been mistaken. Later on in the meeting my father himself clarified this subject.
Now, when Jesus said that he that loves his parents or children more than Jesus is not worthy of Him, he didn’t mean to say that we should just hate our parents and children for the sake of becoming His disciple. He meant that we must give Christ first priority in life.
This means a lot of things, and you prove this great love for Christ in many ways in life.
If your parents, friends, children or relatives stand in your way to getting closer to God, then those people are not worthy of your love. You should never do something against the will of God just to please the people around you. If you agree to smoke just for the sake of your friendship, then you’re placing that friend before God in life, and you’re proving you
care more about your worldly friends than about your God.
It is very reasonable that we must love God more than anything in life, because He is ever forgiving and kind and provides us with everything we need. He sacrificed His own Son to save us, a group of wretched, sinful, ungrateful humans. And what more than our loyal love would God ask of? It is a love that any child owes his father, rather, it is the love that any child would be happy and more than willing to give his father.
Now, coming back to the subject of being worthy of Jesus Christ, the second part says, “And He that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.” Now what does this mean?
The cross symbolizes the great hardships in life. The cross is the object that brings upon it’s victim shame, humiliation, suffering, torture, and cruelty. The Bible says that Christians will be ill-treated around the world. True Christians will have to face several hardships
throughout life, and they will not be accepted in society. They will be hated by the world. They will have to face great trials and tribulations in life.
At these times, dear friends, do not lose faith, but rather utilize these hard times to grow closer to God and to increase your hope. See it as a test of your own faith. You claim you’ll be loyal and forever grateful to God and love Him more than anything, no matter what. So then next time you face hardships in life, think of it as a test of your faith, as I said earlier. Prove yourself to God during those times.
But anyways, the cross thus symbolizes hardships in life. And those that do not take their cross and follow Jesus are not worthy of Him. To read more closely, those that do not take their cross don’t deserve to be with Jesus Christ. What does “taking” mean here?
It means that you must accept and suffer the hardships in life that are brought upon you because you chose to accept Christ. You must be willing to face even life-threatening situations if it’s for the sake of Christ or for the glory of God.
Those who are not willing to “take” this cross in life do not deserve to be with Jesus. In
other words, those who are not willing to share the hardships Christ faced in life, are not worthy of being called His disciples.
Also you must take this cross and follow Jesus Christ. You can’t just go wherever you want after having carried the cross. You must go where Jesus Christ went.
Christ walked up the mountain upon which He was to be killed, but after this death, He was to rise to new and everlasting life.
The same with us. We must follow Christ in His path. We will not have to die anymore for our sins, because Christ did that for us, but we may have to face many harsh treatments and hardships like Christ did, but in the end, we will be following Him to everlasting life.
We will discuss the last part of the verse in the next post, as unfortunately time limits my writing for now. But I do want to tell you one thing before I leave for the day: evaluate yourself. You and I need to do this more than anything in the world.
We are human beings no matter what, and sometimes we may have forgotten of God and His great love for us. So it is our job to check ourselves and make sure we are still loyal disciples of Christ and make sure we are following Him with our cross, rather than complaining about the hardships we have to face because of the fact that we are Christians.
Don’t hesitate to e-mail me for questions: firstname.lastname@example.org my father Evg. Joy Simon for prayer, advice and questions: email@example.com
Also, visit my new branch of this blog, to post questions and regards concerning your Christian life: purefaithanswers.wordpress.com
Until next time we meet, may the peace of Christ be with you and may God bless you dearest readers!