Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Follow Me

As He was going along by the Sea of Galilee, He saw Simon and Andrew, the brother of Simon, casting a net in the sea; for they were fishermen. And Jesus said to them, "Follow Me, and I will make you become fishers of men." Immediately they left their nets and followed Him. Going on a little farther, He saw James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, who were also in the boat mending the nets. Immediately He called them; and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired servants, and went away to follow Him. (Mark 1:16-20)

Jesus took twelve men and asked them to follow as the first step in leadership.  They turned the known living world of their day right side up because, without Jesus, we are upside down!  True leadership rises from the ranks of those who know how to follow and who never forget to keep following Jesus. 

Following Jesus is serious business and we've made it big business.  Today the trend is to wear the right gear with the right message on it; such as the WWJD (What Would Jesus Do) paraphernalia.  T-shirts, key rings, bracelets, earrings, bumper stickers, sunglasses, lunch bags, notebooks, bible covers, cups, pens, pencils, and screen savers; all for the purpose of declaring who we ought to be imitating.
Does all of this lead us to MIMIC Jesus, or does it teach us to really follow Jesus?  It is true that Paul does use this very word (mimic) in I Corinthians 11:1 "Be imitators of me, just as I also am of Christ." – but he is clear that he is following Christ.  Please don't get this wrong.  There nothing wrong or bad in wearing or using these items.  But is that all there is to following Jesus?  Do we wear the gear, sing the songs and attend the services thinking we are following Jesus when, in fact, we are merely mimicking a religious behavior?  Are we aware that for many, religion may be the death of authentic Christianity.

It is probable that if asked the question, "Are you a follower of Jesus Christ?" the majority of churchgoers and even others would raise their hands to signify they are.  The common answers might be...

·      Yes, I am a Christian...meaning I am not a Muslim, Hindu, Atheist.
·      Yes, I am a Believer...meaning I believe certain creeds or beliefs
·      Yes, I am a Baptist...meaning I am not Methodist, Assembly of God or any other denomination.

William Barclay said, “Jesus did not say discuss me; He said follow me.  We do not make terms with Christ; we surrender to Christ.  We do not compromise with Christ; we submit to Christ.  Christianity does not mean being interested in Jesus Christ; it means… we commit to absolute loyalty to Christ…
"Keep looking in the road ahead and make sure Christ is there. Make sure He is walking in front of you. Keep walking with Him and then look over your shoulder and you'll find there is someone following you because you are following Christ." - Joseph Stowell

Today as we enter our places in the world it may be good for us consider our actions and determine if they are based in a creed, an ethic, a morality or a call to “Follow Me.”

Scripture to Claim
Now as they observed the confidence of Peter and John and understood that they were uneducated and untrained men, they were amazed, and began to recognize them as having been with Jesus.   Acts 4:13 

Devotional Archive