When our 18th street facility was being built. Used to walk and pray over the site frequently. I mostly prayed that it would be a place where Jesus is always be honored, where the gospel is proclaimed, His word always taught and lives would be transformed. As long as I’m here, I will work towards that end.
Life change through Jesus’ word is a core mark of any who follow Jesus. In fact Jesus says that without it you aren’t really one of His followers. That was the focus of last weekend’s lesson. Here are the core points.
John 8:31-32 So Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, “If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.”
2John 9 Anyone who goes too far and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God; the one who abides in the teaching, he has both the Father and the Son.
BOTTOM LINE: Following Jesus Includes a Life-long Commitment to Learn & Live His Word.
The key here is in the term continue. It is translate “abide” in John 15 where Jesus describes our need to connect with him like branches in a vineyard. Continuing means it is not a curiosity, fad or phase. It is an commitment so strong that it sticks with us for life.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
Embrace the Bible as God’s Authoritative Truth for Your Life.
1Thes. 2:13 For this reason we also constantly thank God that when you received the word of God which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men, but for what it really is, the word of God, which also performs its work in you who believe.
God’s Word is His clearest authority & revelation for life. It transforms those who respond in faith. When we resist God’s world like hard soil resists new seed, it will not do its work in our lives. No one who rejects the authority of Gods’ word can honestly claim to be a follower of Jesus.
Embrace God’s Word as Your Spiritual Food.
1Pet 2:2 like newborn babies, long for the pure milk of the word, so that by it you may grow in respect to salvation, Cf. Psalm 1.
God’s word is the food that helps us grow spiritually. Disciples are devoted to learning His word because they see it as vital food for the soul. A key part of following is becoming like Him because we are learning from Jesus. This happens best through feeding on God’s word continually.
Commit to Practicing God’s Word as Your Spiritual Exercise.
James 1:21-22 Therefore, putting aside all filthiness and all that remains of wickedness, in humility receive the word implanted, which is able to save your souls. 22 But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves.
God’s word is meant to be lived not just read. Just like any change or growth in life, practice is required. Old habits and values are only overcome through intentional, ongoing practice of new habits & values. Jesus warns that those who hear his word without actually doing it will find that the lives they build will collapse under the storms of this life. In contrast those who do what it call so for may face the very same storms but their lives will stand strong.
Do you want to follow Jesus? Are you continually adjusting your life to His word. You can’t have one without the other. What is your next step to be a true follower?
If you want to dig in more you can find the full audio lesson at http://www.parkviewfamily.com.
Deuteronomy 29:29 “The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our sons forever, that we may observe all the words of this law.