When it comes to becoming a true disciple of Christ, it is very important for us to understand, in order to know that we are on the right path. For this reason, Paul laid out four different things for us to know and think about. In 1 Corinthians, chapter 16, these things are spelled out clearly, that we may know how to follower Jesus and not fall away. #1, Follow Jesus and endure persecution and temptation. #2, Fellowship with others in the faith. #3, Become real men and women of God, as they read the Bible daily, pray often and seek His counsel. #4, Are witnesses for Christ. In the next few paragraphs, I will be discussing these things in detail, that we may all learn and grow in the faith.
#1. Those that become a true follower of Christ will also endure persecution by the enemy. As the Devil does not want God’s children to continue in the faith and do His will, He will send people to deceive us and elevate our temptations, that we may fall. As Paul said, though he was doing God’s will by proclaiming the good news of Jesus Christ, many people were against him. In His words, he said, 2“for a great door and effectual is opened unto me, and there are many adversaries.” Know that as He had to suffer for His faith, God also asks us to do the same, if needed.
#2. 1A follower of Christ is also someone that loves their God and their neighbor. Therefore, they are known to be loving and welcoming to their brothers and sisters in the faith. They are happy to meet to meet new people as well. As Paul said, 2“now if Timotheus come, see that he may be with you without fear: for he worketh the work of the Lord, as I also do. Let no man therefore despise him: but conduct him forth in peace, that he may come unto me: for I look for him with the brethren.” So as Christians, we fellowship one with another, that people not only fill welcome but that we may each grow together in the faith.
#3. We are followers of Jesus when we are standing fast in the faith and living a life that He would prescribe and not our own. This is when we are built up and made strong for God and He is able to do His will inside of us. This is when we can help others through His hand. As Paul said, 2“watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong. Let all your things be done with charity.” Surely, through studying the Bible and much prayer will our faith become fast in the Lord. This is when our desires will be His and we will be able to bless many people through God’s love. This is when true charity and kindness is on display.
#4. As believers in Christ, our desire is to witness God’s truths to the world is elevatated. We also look to other people in the faith to help them grow as well. Just as Paul said, 2“I beseech you, brethren, (ye know the house of Stephanas, that it is the firstfruits of Achaia, and that they have addicted themselves to the ministry of the saints,) That ye submit yourselves unto such, and to every one that helpeth with us, and laboureth.” As he mentioned, people were addicted to the ministry of God. Meaning, it became their life to serve God and to help people come unto Christ. This is a true laborer of love.
It is truly remarkable how we can learn how to better follow the Lord Jesus by a single chapter in the Bible. But this is so true, as it happens every day that we read God’s Word. In this chapter, we have learned the importance of enduring persecution and temptation. That our love will extend towards others in the faith and outside the faith through evangelism. That our desire to learn will never stop. We will never get enough wisdom through reading the Bible daily and daily prayer. What we’ve learned here is God’s will for our lives. Seek the Lord often and become what God desires of you, by knowing the four things that were taught in this message. God bless you in your faith journey.
Let us pray:
Oh Lord, I pray that our faith will grow each and every day, as we seek You in prayer and Bible study. May Your teachings and counsel for our lives flow deep inside our hearts, that we may walk in Your ways. Help us understand the importance of enduring persecution and temptation. I know how hard it can be when we are afflicted by sin and by wicked people, but I know that we can endure such trials and tribulations with Your hand in our lives. You give me peace in these moments and I am made strong. Surely, You can do the same for anyone that calls upon Your Name. Even when Satan wants me to back down, You give me more boldness to carry on. It is truly Your love that carries me and others in these hard times. If anyone is blessed through my encounters, it is by the Holy Spirit that they are convicted. I love You Lord and I love my neighbor. It is truly a blessing to show Your kindness to the world we live in. May Your light shine through me and others, as we go out and proclaim Your great Name to everyone we meet. I want more people to come unto You, Jesus and be saved. I love You, Lord. Amen.
Let us read the Bible:
Note: Any Numbered References, found above, are listed below.
1Matthew 22:35-40 (KJV)
35 Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying,
36 Master, which is the great commandment in the law?
37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
38 This is the first and great commandment.
39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
21 Corinthians 16:1-16 (KJV)
1 Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given order to the churches of Galatia, even so do ye.
2 Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come.
3 And when I come, whomsoever ye shall approve by your letters, them will I send to bring your liberality unto Jerusalem.
4 And if it be meet that I go also, they shall go with me.
5 Now I will come unto you, when I shall pass through Macedonia: for I do pass through Macedonia.
6 And it may be that I will abide, yea, and winter with you, that ye may bring me on my journey whithersoever I go.
7 For I will not see you now by the way; but I trust to tarry a while with you, if the Lord permit.
8 But I will tarry at Ephesus until Pentecost.
9 For a great door and effectual is opened unto me, and there are many adversaries.
10 Now if Timotheus come, see that he may be with you without fear: for he worketh the work of the Lord, as I also do.
11 Let no man therefore despise him: but conduct him forth in peace, that he may come unto me: for I look for him with the brethren.
12 As touching our brother Apollos, I greatly desired him to come unto you with the brethren: but his will was not at all to come at this time; but he will come when he shall have convenient time.
13 Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong.
14 Let all your things be done with charity.
15 I beseech you, brethren, (ye know the house of Stephanas, that it is the firstfruits of Achaia, and that they have addicted themselves to the ministry of the saints,)
16 That ye submit yourselves unto such, and to every one that helpeth with us, and laboureth.