Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Faith Consolidated

A Look At Prophecy In The Gospel of Matthew


Faith Consolidated


Leaving To Follow Jesus Literally

Satan tempted Jesus to turn stone into bread. An impossible transformation. However, Jesus indeed turned fishermen into fishers of men. You might say he turned believers into fishers of men. For most that too appears to be an impossible transformation. Perhaps the hardest part of the transformation is to turn unwilling hearts into willing hearts.

Peter and Andrew were already believers. Now their faith was consolidated into action, readily leaving to literally follow Jesus.

This is what is needed in disciples today!

faith consolidated into action

Believer Enough to Respond

James and John we assume knew Jesus. They lived in his new hometown. They were friends of Andrew and Peter. Perhaps the Bar Jonas brothers introduced Bar Zebedee brothers to Jesus.  James and John also knew Jesus from his teaching. Sounds like pretty normal believers to me. But apparently they were believers enough to respond to the call, "Come follow me". Believers enough to respond.

This is what is needed in disciples today!

 believer enough to respond

Things All Believers are Called to Leave

Peter and Andrew left their means of livelihood. John and James left their possessions and family. 

Matthew 10:37: “If you love your father or mother more than you love me, you are not worthy of being mine; or if you love your son or daughter more than me, you are not worthy of being mine."

Matthew 10:38: "If you refuse to take up your cross and follow me, you are not worthy of being mine."

Mark 10:29-30:  “Yes,” Jesus replied, “and I assure you that everyone who has given up house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or property, for my sake and for the Good News, will receive now in return a hundred times as many houses, brothers, sisters, mothers, children, and property—along with persecution. And in the world to come that person will have eternal life."

These things, Jesus preached, were to be let go to answer the call, "Come follow me."  In the letting go comes the evidence of true belief.

This is what is needed in disciples today!

letting go that becomes the evidence of true belief

Response to Specific Instructions

Note, however, that these actions by Peter, Andrew, John, and James, plus the specific actions in the above verses, were a response to a specific instruction.

Our "loyalty" must first leave attachment to our "self" to follow Jesus, then our obedience brings "leavings" that follow him daily into our new lives.

This is what is needed in disciples today!


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Photo Credits:
Spotted Sea Trout in a net close up by Tim Donovan/Florida Fish and Wildlife, some rights reserved

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