Text: Matthew 16.25
Icebreaker: What is most extreme story of a fan that you ever heard? Have you ever done something extreme to do something that you really want? Would you be able to share with others?
Alexander the Great conquered most of the known world. In one confrontation, he approached a strongly fortified city with just a small company of soldiers. He came forward and demanded to see the King. The king approached to hear Alexander’s demands. “surrender to me immediately,” commanded Alexander. The King laughed. “Why should I surrender to you? We have you far outnumbered. You are no threat to us!” Alexander responded by lining up his men and ordering them to march straight towards the nearby cliff. The defending soldiers and king watched incredulously as a man after man marched off the edge of the cliff without hesitation. After ten of his men had thus died, Alexander ordered the rest to stop. The King realized that with such loyal enemy soldiers willing to die for the cause, his defeat was guaranteed. He surrendered on the spot to Alexander the Great.
Do you know that there is a massive difference between a FOLLOWER and a FAN? Let us see some?
1) Fans will follow what they like, disciples will follow the master and His teachings.
We see many people in the bible that liked part of Jesus’ teachings, or even followed Him for a while or in certain occasions. In special we can see the rich young ruler conversation with Jesus (Matt 19.16-22), a young man that did what the law required, but that wasn’t willing to follow the example of the master, only teachings of behaviour and not the transformation of intention.
We are all tempted to follow just what pleases us, but in order to become a disciple we have to break the wall and understand that He is God and we are call to become disciples of Jesus, that what makes the difference in our lives and in our generation. That is what will impact others!
2) Disciples are not moved by desperate feeling, but by decision
In John 6 it is possible to see many people following Jesus everywhere he went. Jesus was performing miracles and sharing a pearl of deep wisdom with everyone, in special He fed the 5.000 multiplying bread and fish what must have impacted thousands of people, after that He walked on the water and his disciples were all in awe before the Christ. But a little while after all the amazing things Jesus did he started to disciple people with solid teaching, he went deep sharing that He cared about the intention of their hearts, and because of that the bible says that many people (followers and fans) deserted Jesus.
Have you decided to follow Jesus no matter what, or are you still waiting to “feel” in your hear to follow?
3) It is impossible to stop a group of Disciples.
The soldiers of Alexandre walked to death because of their dedication to follow their leaders, we instead we walk to eternal abundant life if we choose to follow our master and father Jesus Christ.
Tertullian, in his great apology for the Christian faith, challenged the Roman authorities: “Kill us, torture us, condemn us, grind us to dust. The more you mow us down, the more we grow, for the seed of the church is the blood of the martyrs.” John Wesley knew that only 100 followers could change the world “Give me one hundred men who fear nothing but sin, and desire nothing but God, and I care not a straw whether they be clergymen or laymen; such alone will shake the gates of hell and set up the kingdom of heaven on Earth. Are you one of them? Would you like to be a disciple of Jesus?
Conclusion: Are you a follower or a fan of Jesus? So let’s pray.