Session Four - Follow Series
Ask yourself: If this is how much Jesus loves - that he would sacrifice his life not just for one, or for a few, but for all people - If he loved us that much do you think he would leave it there? When you think about it, it doesn't quite make sense. What if it were you; if you loved someone so much that you would die for them, wouldn't you want them to love you back? Wouldn't you want to be in a relationship with them?
This is what God wants for us too.
In our first session we took a quick look at when St Peter first encountered Jesus. The Gospel of Matthew gives a brief version of the same story and also talks about the calling of three other disciples:
As he walked by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the lake—for they were fishermen. And he said to them, ‘Follow me, and I will make you fish for people.’ Immediately they left their nets and followed him.
As he went from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John, in the boat with their father Zebedee, mending their nets, and he called them. Immediately they left the boat and their father, and followed him. - Matt 4:18-22 (NRSV)
For these four men, this was the moment Jesus put the invitation out to them. It was this moment Jesus called them to follow him. What is probably the most amazing about their response is that they responded at once.
Immediately they left their nets and followed him' (v19-20)... 'Immediately they left the boat and their father, and followed him.' (v22)
The calling to follow Jesus was so strong they felt they had to literally 'drop what they were doing' and immediately follow him. A relationship with Jesus requires a response. If he calls us to follow him, sooner or later we will need to decide ‘Yes’ or ‘No’. And ‘Yes’ can mean change.
Read that passage of scripture again and think about all the things these guys would have left behind. Their homes, their work, their families. Look at the brothers James and John; they were with their father when Jesus called them and still they dropped what they were doing and followed. Did they know then the impact that decision would make on their lives?
Andrew would become Saint Andrew, and the life he learnt from Jesus, he would take out a travel for years in far lands spreading the ‘Good News’ until he was killed for what he believed.
James would become Saint James, he would become so passionate and on fire for this message, it would consume him and he would be the first of the twelve disciples to be martyred for what he believed.
John, was the youngest of the twelve and be known as Jesus’ ‘beloved disciple’. He would write down the life he saw Christ lead, his ministry and encounter with people and they would be immortalised in the Holy Bible as the Gospel according to Saint John.
Tash Mierendorf & Pat Keady (c) 2014 Ignite Youth