Disciples do the will of the Father

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God’s will is much spoken about as it should be and plenty of us including those who feature in God’s Word have managed to make a mess of it at some point in time. Disobedience seems to be the root of not allowing God to fulfil His will or purpose in our lives, but we are incredibly thankful to God for His grace and mercy because as we regularly divert from His route, He has already found a way back to His plan and purpose. Many never get back to the road because they find the path too difficult or they struggle with obedience, then there are others who God carves a new course out for which is an amazing example of God’s tender love for His creation. So why do so many live unfulfilled lives?

The simple answer is that believers tend to see God as a genie or a grandfather in the sky. That’s why the atheists are busy laughing and calling God a fairy but if we were busy seeing God for who He is (No man has ever seen Him) then there is a chance that we will see the genuine fulfilment of His will on earth. Below I look at what believers do:

Expect monthly handouts – Like the UN World Food Programme
Expecting instant miracles – Like Maggi Noodles
Expecting blessings to land on their laps – Like babies needing their daily feed

God can do any of the above but they are extremely rare, and they aren’t ever part of a daily lifestyle that we should be living in Christ because I never saw the disciples live like it. Below I look at what disciples do:

They hear God – Relationship
They are obedient to God – Purpose and Desire
They are guided by His Word – He becomes a light to our feet
They overcome expected challenges on the road marked out – Understand spiritual warfare

This is how you can do the will of the Father, and if you want that tight, family-like relationship with God, then you must live like this all the time. Jesus told us in His Word that whoever does the will of The Father is a family member to Him. Your path isn’t meant to be easy, and there rarely is a free ride but if you want to expect then expect the impossible God’s way. God won’t move outside His Word so if you’re expectation isn’t found in His Word then you will never be able to see His will let alone fulfil it.

The blind lead the blind, and it is now time to open your eyes.

Disciples respect God’s Word

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When Jesus spoke to the disciples in the initial days of their calling, they were astonished at His teachings because of the authority that it carried. There was a deep respect for Jesus, and what He had to teach and the disciples were seriously dedicated and craved learning from one they recognised to be The Christ. I spent a lot of time ministering God’s Word in the last 15 years, and the number one struggle I noticed was the lack of drive to read The Bible which also resulted in the lack of a breakthrough, authority and abundant living in these peoples lives.

True disciples understand the power and authority of God’s Word, and they become dedicated, obsessed, in love with it and make it part of their daily time with God. The following three things happen to the disciple who is dedicated to God’s Word:

Faith – They get to know Jesus for who He is, they trust in Him more and rely on His truth
Maturity – They understand God’s ways and respect the issues that they face on earth
Spiritual Encounters – Blessings on every level on a regular basis

Followers do not understand the power and authority of God’s Word, and they treat it like it’s a lifestyle guide when they want to feel better about their situation. Plenty also fail to understand what God is speaking about in His Word, and they quickly give up. The following three things happen to the follower who is not dedicated to God’s Word:

Faith – They lack it and walk in doubt and are rarely happy with life.
Maturity – They fail to grow in the knowledge of God and when tough times come calling they blame The Almighty.
Spiritual Encounters – They have plenty of them but never understand what they mean and the blessing behind them.

God has made it clear that His Word will give direction, cut through the flesh and spirit, help you fight your battles and keep you close to God on that straight narrow path and if you treat this as an everyday morning read, then your life will lack purpose and righteousness. Recognise the power of His Word if you truly want to accomplish His perfect will.

The moment you lose interest in God’s Word is the moment you lost interest in the cross and His blood. Respect His Word and find out the power that it has in your life.

Do you genuinely respect Jesus?
Do you genuinely respect His authority?

We will be known by our fruits!

Disciples teach the ways of Jesus

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True disciples of Christ hold onto Matthew Chapter 28 because it is this very chapter that gives the mandate, authority and release from Heaven to serve and truly follow Jesus. The entire purpose of the disciple is defined in the last few verses where Jesus showed that He was risen from the dead, and as the disciples worshipped Him, He released the following:

Teach Nations
The way of the Father
The way of the Son
The way of the Spirit
The commands of Jesus

This would have been incredibly daunting for The Disciples, and Jesus knew that hence why He added in the final sentence to them that they should not worry, He will always be with them. That is an explicit promise to disciples that even in times of trouble He will be with them and here is the scripture challenge. Jesus never leaves and forsakes us, but when followers move away from God’s will, they abandon Christ. When Disciples move away from God’s Will, they stay close to him because they know the cost of His love, mercy and grace.

In a world full of false teachings, misunderstandings and misinterpretation the way of the disciple has been lost, watered down and mocked. I have heard certain preachers call the disciples idiots for some of the mistakes they made. One called Peter an idiot and another laughed at Thomas for doubting. I am sure the very same people feel that such beliefs help justify them the message they preach. The 12 Apostles will judge the 12 tribes of Israel at the end of time. Shudder before you speak against such believers!

In whichever capacity you feel released by Jesus, please remember the mandate and the rules that He has set you as a disciple and teaching people doesn’t mean preaching at them or standing up and speaking publicly. Do life with people, show them Jesus every day and use that relationship you have built up to teach them about, The Father, The Son, The HolyGhost and the commands of Jesus. If you feel a little lost do what the disciples did; Worship Him in Spirit and in Truth.

In the words of John, little children do not believe every spirit.

Striking the Shepherd

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Jesus was quoting the Old Testament when speaking to the disciples about the “shepherd being struck” so the sheep would scatter and He referred the scripture (Matthew/Zachariah) to himself and the believers. I have read many articles and heard many sermons using this scripture out of context to suit agendas, and it’s time to put the record straight.

Church leaders believe that it is an enemy attack that causes sheep to scatter from their pews, but it is God himself who does it. The scripture in context is God himself striking The Shepherd (Jesus), and His disciples who were told they would fall are the ones who scattered. If God is striking the shepherd, there is a good cause for it because He wants to test the hearts and minds of disciples, as His ways are much higher than our ways. The devil gets too much credit for leaders falling and that removes leaders from responsibility hence issues always tend to repeat themselves.

So why do the sheep scatter?

Weak in relationship with Christ – People look for an emotional buzz; they move from church to church
Attitude of a follower rather than Disciple – People need to be spoon fed everything
The Shepherd can no longer provide protection – Either the pastor behaves fleshy, or His assignment has changed in your life

It’s time for the Church and its leaders to step up and realise the devil isn’t the root problem, but it is the flesh that is weak. Jesus said to the disciples in the garden of Gethsemane that the spirit is ready (to the disciples), but the flesh is weak indicating that anointing won’t stop leaders from falling, but a lack of authority and the exercising of it, is the real issue here. If you do not use your authority the devil will use your flesh.

There are many circumstances beyond our control, especially when it is demonic but the root and fruits are very different, and that is the key thing to remember. Demonic activity is divine discipline, and if you are being struck then the question is, “what discipline are you encountering?” Let’s humble ourselves and look deep within; it is easy to blame others and the enemy, but it’s high time to look within.

A people of compromise are people that God will scatter.

Disciples have vision

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Jesus spoke at length to the disciples about many subjects, but the one area which He wanted them to grasp was the vision about His second coming. Everything He wanted them to know concerned His return and what needed to happen before He came back, therefore the disciples who later became the apostles based their entire vision, hope and lifestyle in His return. Today the talk of Jesus returning is extremely limited because the church is busy focussing on what their daily provisions need to be. The following are typical examples of this:
Numbers – Are churches keeping membership and converting those into tithes/offerings?
Teaching – What’s being taught? Most preachers recycle their sermons based on their convictions!
Fellowship – Coffee and Cake keep the need for the HolySpirit at a minimum – I am not against coffee and cake, but it does replace the spiritual over time.
If you are a disciple of Jesus you will be extremely focussed on His return for many reasons; One being that scripture tells us that this is our only blessed hope in the book of Titus. Secondly, you will do everything in mind for the generations to come hence why Jesus had the Apostles plant the first churches. Forward thinking with spiritual principles in mind will bless people with truth and vision and God’s will shall be executed and His Kingdom will come. Below are three benefits of looking forward to Jesus coming back:
Realisations that earthly pain is temporary
Realisation that your time is short
Realisation that you have much authority and responsibility
It’s time for the church to wake up from their survival mode and understand the times and seasons we are living in. Without vision, we perish, and those who want to be disciples recognise that they will only live the abundant lifestyle through focussing on Jesus coming back. Followers are concerned with today and their needs; disciples think about pioneering for future generations.