If ever a person was trying to win a popularity contest, it was not Jesus. In fact, while He lived on earth, He often said and did things that made people want to stop following Him. He said these things because He wanted people to take the call to follow Him seriously. In fact, He wanted people who would be fully devoted followers of Christ. These are still the people He wants to follow Him today. Christ wants fully devoted followers who are dedicated to Him even when life is difficult. Today we are going to learn from some of Jesus' teachings and be reminded that we have to decide what we will do with His teaching. Will we accept it, or will we reject it. In our study, we are going to conclude that He is the only One who leads to life and peace.
Have you ever had a time in your life where you had to fake it and pretend to be something you were not? Describe that time.
1. What is the difference between a follower and a fully devoted follower of Christ?
2. What led you to become a follower of Jesus? If you are not yet His follower, what is holding you back?
3. Read John 14:23-26. Why do you think obedience is a reflection of one's love for God?
Jesus replied, “All who love me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will come and make our home with each of them. Anyone who doesn’t love me will not obey me. And remember, my words are not my own. What I am telling you is from the Father who sent me. I am telling you these things now while I am still with you. But when the Father sends the Advocate as my representative—that is, the Holy Spirit—he will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I have told you.
4. Based on this teaching, is your obedience to God currently reflecting your love for Him? Why or why not?
5. What step of obedience do you need to take right now?
6. Read Luke 14:25-28. What is the cost of following Jesus? Why is it important to tell people about this cost of following Him?
A large crowd was following Jesus. He turned around and said to them, “If you want to be my disciple, you must, by comparison, hate everyone else—your father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even your own life. Otherwise, you cannot be my disciple. And if you do not carry your own cross and follow me, you cannot be my disciple.
“But don’t begin until you count the cost. For who would begin construction of a building without first calculating the cost to see if there is enough money to finish it?
7. Have you faced any cost as a result of following Jesus? If so, what were they?
As you read about this teaching from Jesus, you may find yourself needing courage and boldness to be a fully devoted follower of Christ. Take a few moments to think about where you need boldness. Then, tell your group and listen to your group members share areas where they need boldness. After everyone has shared, spend time praying for each other to have boldness to follow God boldly and closely.
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The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.