Are you a believer? Do you believe that Jesus is God? If so, how many points does that give you? Where does that belief put you with God? How does that measure up in your relationship with God?
You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe—and tremble!
So even the demons believe that Jesus is God, so how does that square with being a believer? You hear people say that all the time, “I’m a believer”.
21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’
Let me ask you a more important question than are you a believer! (Are You A Disciple or Warrior Of Christ?)
Well, I guess we should determine what a disciple is to determine if we are one or not?
Harper’s Bible Dictionary describes a disciple as an apprentice or pupil attached to a teacher or movement; one whose allegiance is to the instruction and commitments of the teacher or movement.
Does that describe your relationship with Christ?
So, above we see that a disciple is not just a believer, but he’s an avid learner and imitator of his teacher. Are you and avid leaner and imitator of Christ?
What did Jesus say about being a disciple?
A disciple is not above his teacher, but everyone who is perfectly trained will be like his teacher.
Are you in training? Do you have the peace of God? Are you investing yourself and time? Are you, am I like our Teacher? Do we emulate Him, do we speak His words, and do we act as He did?
Part of being a disciple is being like what Paul talked about in Romans:
For whom He foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, …
To be a disciple then, we must be emulating and conforming to the image of Christ. Are we doing that?
I don’t know anyone who is a perfect disciple. I can assure you I don’t always speak His words, or act the way He would in all situation; as I still struggle with carnality when not vigilant. What I can tell you though is when I fail; I get up, I repent, I brush myself off, and move forward. I want to be like my Savior, even though He is a hard act to follow.
Do you have a strong desire to follow Jesus and become like Him? Unless you do, the scriptures say we can’t truly be His disciple!
So, what is something that might identify us as disciples? Let’s take a look at some scriptures on that.
Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed.
Do we abide in Jesus? Do we accept and act in accordance with His word and His will; not just with lip service, but with action?
James 1:22-25 22
But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; 24 for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. 25 But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.
A doer isn’t someone who just hears and believes something, a doer is someone who takes what he learns and does something with it.
So, what’s another way to measure whether we are a disciple of Jesus?
John 13:34-35 34
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. 35 By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”
Sometimes people aren’t very lovable, but Christ doesn’t say anything about only loving the lovable. Also, this is not an emotional love He’s talking about, but a charitable love; a loving in spite of. He also tells us to love our enemies.
“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. …
Again, this isn’t some warm and fuzzy love for people who are evil toward you, but a decision to treat others well in spite of their treatment of you. As a disciple we’re supposed to follow Christ’s example, the only people He treated harshly were the religious hypocrites. People will know and judge us according to our actions, and how we treat others. What are your actions telling others?
Don’t be discouraged if you find yourself falling short as a disciple, we all fall short more often than we’d care to admit. But, being a disciple isn’t a matter of getting everything perfect, it’s a mindset and commitment to emulate the one we follow.
Isn’t it the same in life when learning a skill? Those who truly want to succeed in life, in relationships, in business or some career must have a disciple’s commitment in their learning.
There is no greater calling to me than to be a disciple of Christ. That doesn’t mean that your whole life is about reading the bible, and spending hours in prayer each day. Some are called to evangelize or preach so most of their time will be serving the church. Others are called to write, or to be activists for just causes; they are called to devote time and study to that calling. Some are blessed with financial success so that they may help others in that way.
Being a disciple of Christ is about the heart. If you feel you are having problems with your heart, ask God to be your cardiologist, and make it right.
In all my years, I have never felt the sense of urgency to be right with God as I do now. There is a time when God says it’s too late. Look at the parable of the 10 virgins. If we are not spiritually ready when the Groom returns for His bride, the door will be shut on us. Don’t wait another day, if you feel you’re not where you need to be with God get on your knees and pour out your heart, and He will make His home with you.
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