Discipleship 301 Part 6
Our foundation Scripture is Matthew 28:18-19
18 And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit,
Last week we added two more pieces to our Discipleship series
Disciples pray in faith and their language is praise
When you pray you have to pray in the Spirit. ( in other words be directed by it) or else you might not receive an answer or blessing on it.
Persistance is key - It is not taking NO for an answer
Bold prayer is with confidence that God is listening to you
It is prayer that gets you off the couch or out of your chair and moves you to a place where God can meet you.
Elijah prayed that it would not rain. (He prayed with Purpose) His prayer lined up with what God wanted to do.
He prayed until he saw a cloud the size of a mans hand.
There will be times when you have to keep on asking.
Disciples are people of Praise
Praise has a lot of meanings- mainly homage, admiration, worship, reverence, thanksgiving and adoration. extending of the hands and glorify
Praise is also a weapon against the enemy
Scripture says in KJV God inhabits the praises of his people.
It literally means God lives in the praises of His people. He remains in the he dwells in them.
According to Isaiah 61 - Praise drives out heaviness. READ
A Disciples Core Value is Love
Scripture says in 1 Tim 1:5 the goal of our instruction is love...
It is our bottom line.
You will find that it is at the core of demonic attack.
Everything that you do that involves love Satan hates.
Why - because he hates you
Paul is talking to Timothy - He is leaving the church of Ephesus into his hands.
He is having his Pastoral talk to the incoming Pastor and says, Hey Timothy, before you go and get busy putting in new carpet, cleaning up the facilities and putting in a court yard, remember it isn’t about all those things it is really about LOVE.
If you cannot love then all of this wont add up to a hill of beans.
Q. How do we know we are loving better?
A. Ask People - especially new people - they smell rats better than you do. I heard a pastor say churches get used to there own smell and the smell could be bad but they don’t notice.
Come on Guys how many of you came home and your wife says you stink go take a shower and you say really I didn’t notice.
I have an idea - everyone take a connection card - dont put your name on it - fold it in half so no one can see your response. Your going to put 2 numbers on it
From 1-10 - be honest - how loving of a church are we to each other - then how loving of a church are we to the community?
Im going to have the ushers have baskets at the door at the end of service
30 And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”
This comes from Deut 6:5 and Lev 19:18 but with an addition to love God with your mind.
Pious Jews recite this every morning and evening - It is called the Shema - it is easier said than done
It is to love God with your entire being at full capacity
Why Love - because it fulfills the Law
The Celts would get up with this prayer every morning
“I will kindle my fire this morning
In the presence of the Holy Angels of heaven
God, kindle thou in my heart within
A flame of love to my neighbor
To my foe, to my friend, to my kindred all to the brave to the knave and to the thrall”(slave)
Everything boils down to Love
Love your Neighbor
8 Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law. 9 For the commandments, “You shall not commit adultery, You shall not murder, You shall not steal, You shall not covet,” and any other commandment, are summed up in this word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 10 Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.
You need to let you neighbor feel like he is part of your family
One of the greatest books on evangelism is called the Celtic way of evangelism - It was evangelism that changed an entire nation of Ireland
It was people driven not priest driven.
They created a christian monastic community far different from the Roman monastic community.
A visitor would pass through a circular outer wall and through a gatethat signified you were entering holly ground. It signified a different way of living a different lifestyle - free from aggression and violence devoted to the purposes of God.
The community gave the feel of the paradise to come.
Inside the enclosure were all the buildings needed to live in community with the addition of a guest house. It was on the choicest site. It allowed the visitor to see the difference between the world and life for Christ in His community.
They could witness how people supported one another, prayed for one another and worked together, and pulled together
Obviously the Question - Who is my neighbor?
25 And behold, a lawyer stood up to put him to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” 26 He said to him, “What is written in the Law? How do you read it?” 27 And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.” 28 And he said to him, “You have answered correctly; do this, and you will live.” 29 But he, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” 30 Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who stripped him and beat him and departed, leaving him half dead. 31 Now by chance a priest was going down that road, and when he saw him he passed by on the other side. 32 So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion. 34 He went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he set him on his own animal and brought him to an inn and took care of him. 35 And the next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, ‘Take care of him, and whatever more you spend, I will repay you when I come back.’ 36 Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?” 37 He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” And Jesus said to him, “You go, and do likewise.”
It says this; I must make the same effort to get for my neighbor that i would get for myself
If you have food and your neighbor has none then you must get him food - if you dont have double then give him half
You have two of something give him one.
Love their Families
Husband Love your wife as Christ loved the church.
Don’t exasperate your kids. Don’t push them to the limit of breaking
Love in present tense - Not just the thought of tomorrow but love them in the present - what they are going through today and the very near future ( like tomorrow)
Love the Brethren
22 You were cleansed from your sins when you obeyed the truth, so now you must show sincere love to each other as brothers and sisters. Love each other deeply with all your heart.
I think this is one of the toughest.
We would rather criticize and bad mouth our brothers and sisters and we wonder why people don’t want to step foot in the church.
My wife understands this all to well, and my children maybe even more.
The call to perfection for everyone else is a great sin. It is called hypocrisy
5 “You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.
Many brethren have left the church because of what another Christian had to say compared to what the enemy has said.
Now if this isn’t tough enough - Jesus takes us one step farther.
Loving your enemies.
27 “But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you.
Luke: A Bible Commentary in the Wesleyan Tradition (Love Is a Core Value)
The standard of kingdom love is high, so high that at some point we can feel the need to explain the meaning of Jesus’ words in ways that can give us a bit of wiggle room in dealing with not-so-lovable people.
Praying for those who mistreat us, saying good things to people who say bad things to us, and doing good to those who want to do us bad may be a stretch for us, but we can do it, empowered by the Spirit of Christ.
But to say that we deeply love our enemies is more than a stretch. As if that were not difficult enough, Jesus added physical abuse: “If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also” (6:29).
A strike on the cheek was intended to be as much an insult as it was to bring injury. Turning the other cheek was to invite further insult or injury. Love’s first response to insult or injury is not to retaliate or find revenge, but to demonstrate being longsuffering and to return kindness.
Love seeks to give rather than take. Love’s first response to someone wanting what you have is to see what their needs are, and if you have what can help them, you give it.
People who live for this world often live with the rule “Do to others before they do it to you.” But the rule of the kingdom of God is “Do to others as you would have them do to you” (6:31). Love requires you to treat others in a way you want them to treat you, rather than to treat them in the same way that they have treated you.
It might not be too hard for us to love people who love us and to do good to those who are good to us, but this does not make us any different from people of this world. Jesus said even “sinners” do that (6:33). But people of the kingdom of God are to love and seek the well-being of their enemies. If you live this way, “then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked” (6:35).
As children of God, we are to demonstrate the characteristics of our Father. We value what He values. We love because He loves.