What does it mean to follow someone? How many people do we follow on Facebook?
It’s interesting that these two words, “Follow Me,” were the words Jesus used to assemble His disciples, establishing them, as He began His ministry; and when He was re-establishing them after the resurrection.
I looked up the meaning of the word follow in the Greek language and it said, To follow Jesus for His purpose, not our own; to go with, to be guided by, to be a disciple.
Jesus appears to the disciples after the resurrection for the third time and He tells them to “Bring some of the fish you have just caught. Come and have breakfast.” (John 21: 10, 12)
Don’t you love that? The King of Glory, Jesus, cooks them breakfast. Yes, their original call to be “fishers of men” is re-established.
- God’s call on our life is never thwarted.
- We can’t be disqualified if we follow.
- He qualifies the called.
Jesus then asks a very important question to Simon Peter, “Do you truly love me more than these? (John 21: 15) In case you are asking, what’s the more than these here? Is it the other disciples or perhaps the fishing gear or all of the fish being caught after Jesus told them to put the net on the other side? It could be one or all of them.
Peter responds, Yes Lord! Jesus then tells him three times how he can love Him. He tells Peter to:
- Feed my lambs. (John 21: 15b)
- Take care of my sheep. (John 21: 16b)
- Feed my sheep. (John 21: 17b)
Maybe Jesus asks him three times since Peter denied Him three times. Just saying! After Jesus ends His conversation (teaching moment) he says, “Follow Me.”
- Following Jesus requires a higher, truer love, not just a being fond of kind of love.
These meanings are in each of the words love that Jesus is alluding to in each of his three questions.
- There is a specific way of following Him.
- We have to be all in.
As His disciple, what sheep are you called to? Are you called to the little lambs, any who need care, or the older sheep who have gone astray?
- Following requires a commitment and an open spirit to receive and release.
“We all like sheep have gone astray, but now we have returned to the shepherd and overseer of your souls.” (1 Peter 2: 25)
- It’s time to turn or return. (Shared from John 21, Modified)
His Faithfulness Surrounds Us
Have you considered how surrounding His faithfulness really is? He encircles us with love and faithfulness. That’s an awesome God! “O Lord God Almighty, who is like you? You are mighty, O Lord, and your faithfulness surrounds you.” (Psalm 88: 8)
Following Jesus will put a word in our mouth and a song in her heart. “I will sing of the Lord’s great love forever, with my mouth I will make your faithfulness known through all generations. I will declare that your love stands firm forever, that you established your faithfulness in heaven itself.” (Psalm 89: 1-2)
- Following Him will release blessings.
“Blessed are those who have learned to acclaim (praise enthusiastically and publicly), you, who walk in the light of your presence, O, Lord.” (Psalm 89: 15)
- Learn to praise Him unashamedly. (Shared from Psalm 89: 1-18)
Follow The Lord And Don’t Be Led Astray
Manasseh, Hezekiah’s son, is now King of Judah after he died. He was not like his father. He re-erected all the idols and placed them back in the temple. “Manasseh led Judah and the people of Jerusalem astray, so that they did more evil than the nations the Lord had destroyed before the Israelites. (2 Chronicles 33: 9)
God tried to talk with him, but he didn’t listen. Just like a rebellious child! So how did God handle this?
“God brought the King of Assyria against him who took Manasseh as a prisoner, put a hook in his nose, bound him with bronze shackles and took him to Babylon.” (2 Chronicles 33: 11)
- Choose to follow the Lord, this will keep you unbound and free!
Manasseh repented and God listened! He brings him back to Jerusalem and to his kingdom.
- God delights when we come back to Him.
- His kingdom is our inheritance.
Manasseh restored the temple, removed all the idols he brought in, and encouraged the people to serve and follow the Lord.
- There are things in our life that the Lord may ask us to get rid of.
- Purging is a normal cleaning out process.
Following the Lord wholeheartedly is a difficult thing to do in the world we live in. Everything is anti-God and very liberal with an everything goes mentality.
- We have to follow hard when it is hard.
“My soul follows hard after the Lord, your right hand upholds me.” (Psalm 63: 8)
Here’s what following hard looks like: “I stay close (cling) to you; you support me with your right hand (your right hand sustains me).” (Psalm 63: 8)
- Following closely is clinging, as He holds us up, sustaining us.
(Shared from 2 Chronicles 33, Modified)
UNBROKEN LOVE SERIES
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