Can I Be a Disciple of Christ?

Can I Be a Disciple of Christ?

by Rob Appel

 

       In September 2012 I took a spiritual retreat in the Rocky Mountains and was wondering how God was going to speak to me during this special time. On the morning of September 27th, in the lodge of Camp Paul Hummel, God spoke to me through an old familiar book. I picked up a copy of My Utmost For His Highest by Oswald Chambers, and opened it to one of the pages. It turns out it was one of the 12 dog-eared pages of that copy. This month is number six in a series from this great devotional.

 

Salvation is free, but it comes with a cost! Christ said, “No one can become my disciple without giving up everything for me.”

So, if we are not willing to give up everything—and by “everything” Jesus meant EVERYTHING—you cannot be his disciple.

You have probably heard this many times, and maybe somehow missed the full concept of giving up everything you own. In concept you would give up everything, but maybe these verses really apply to others… and you don’t really need to do anything more. After all, you don’t want to be a disciple; you just want to be a plain, ordinary, everyday, average Christian. The problem is, Jesus doesn’t want plain, ordinary, everyday, average Christians!

Our Lord is looking for the committed. To prove that commitment you have to be willing to give up everything. You do that, and you can be a Christ follower—a disciple of Christ!

In Luke we find Jesus using words that we had not read before. In Jesus’ last days, he made his way to Jerusalem and crowds gathered around and pushed closely to hear what he had to say. But Jesus said this, “If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple.”

Say what? This had to confuse some, anger others, and simply stun the crowd. How could Jesus go from talking about loving our enemies to hating our own parents? We are supposed to love those we hardly know, and hate those who love us the most! How can this be?

Jesus isn’t saying that we need to consciously hate all that are near and dear to us. It is a statement not of affection but really one of loyalty! Remember this from Matthew 6:24— “No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other.”

Oswald Chambers put it this way:

 

“If the closest relationship of a disciple’s life conflict with the claims of Jesus Christ, then our Lord requires instant obedience to Himself. Discipleship means personal, passionate devotion to a Person—our Lord Jesus Christ. There is a vast difference between devotion to a person and devotion to principles or to a cause. Our Lord never proclaimed a cause—He proclaimed personal devotion to Himself.

       “To be a disciple is to be a devoted bondservant motivated by love for the Lord Jesus. Many of us who call ourselves Christians are not truly devoted to Jesus Christ. No one on earth has this passionate love for the Lord Jesus unless the Holy Spirit has given it to him. We may admire, respect, and revere Him, but we cannot love Him on our own. The only One who truly loves the Lord Jesus is the Holy Spirit, and it is He who has ‘poured out in our hearts’ the very ‘love of God.’ (Romans 5:5)”

 

This question is for all: “So, are you a disciple of Christ?” Are you willing to give up all on His account? For young and old alike, I pray that you are!

 

Next Month:

This Experience Must Come

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