What is a disciple? If someone asked you; Are you are a disciple of Jesus? What would you say? Do you believe that you are a disciple?
I was convicted strongly by the Holy Spirit that we throw that word around and don’t seem to stop and consider what a true disciple of Christ really is. Websters definition of disciple is, “a pupil or follower of any teacher or school.” But what does it mean to be a disciple of Jesus Christ?
We can easily look at the lives of the twelve disciples of Jesus and look at the life of the apostle Paul. That may help us understand what it means to be a true disciple, but what does the Bible say about it?
John 8:31-32 Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. 32 And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”
Abiding in God’s word is the mark of a true disciple. According to this passage, the fruit of being a true disciple is knowledge of the truth and freedom. In other words, being a disciple has a specific fruit attached to it. It is measurable.
We must ask ourselves these two very sobering questions.
Am I truly abiding in God’s word?
Do I hunger and thirst for the word like a baby desires its milk?
1 Peter 2:2 as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby
True disciples have this in common, they all have an insatiable desire for God’s word. Spiritual hunger and spiritual growth are also measurable fruit of being a true disciple.
Am I truly free?
Am I free from the bondage of sin? Or am I still bound by the same old habits, addictions, emotions, and carnal tendencies I was last year? Is my transformation into Christ-likeness obvious to me and others, or am I stuck in religious practices that makes me feel better about myself but doesn’t change me?
Do I understand that Truth is a person and not just words on a page? Am I growing in my relationship with that person and following Him?
John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.
John 1:1-5 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. 4 In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. 5 And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.
Being a true disciple is to abide in truth until it dawns on our heart and mind that truth is a living person, not simply words in a book. Abiding in truth causes Truth to set us free, and whom the Truth sets free, is free indeed. Freedom is the fruit of knowing Him.
As we abide in the truth of God’s word, that Word becomes flesh in our lives. We become the truth we abide in. We become what we behold.
This is how we follow Him.
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