What is a Disciple?

What is a Disciple of Jesus

A Disciple is a Holy Spirit-filled water-baptized follower of Jesus Christ who strives to live according to the following:

A DISCIPLE LOVES JESUS CHRIST BY STRIVING TO OBEY HIM AS THEIR LORD AND KING.

This is in accordance with what Jesus said:

John 14:15,21,23-24

“If you love me, obey my commandments… Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me…  All who love me will do what I say… Anyone who doesn’t love me will not obey me.”

Luke 6:46 

“Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord!’ when you don’t do what I say?”

This is also in accordance with what the Apostle John wrote:

1 John 2:3-6

“This is how we are sure that we have come to know Him (Jesus Christ):

By keeping His commands.  

The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” yet doesn’t keep His commands, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.  

But whoever keeps His word, truly in him the love of God is perfected. 

This is how we know we are in Him:  

The one who says he remains in Him should walk just as He walked.”

A DISCIPLE SEEKS TO LOVE, SERVE, AND HELP THOSE AROUND THEM WHO ARE IN NEED. (HOMELESS, ELDERLY, ORPHANS, FELLOW BELIEVERS, FAMILY, NEIGHBOR, ETC.)

These are practical applications of what Jesus said:  

Matthew 22:39

…”Love your neighbor as yourself.”

Matthew 25:31-46

“But when the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit upon his glorious throne.  All the nations will be gathered in his presence, and he will separate the people as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 

He will place the sheep at his right hand and the goats at his left.  “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world.  For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home.  I was naked, and you gave me clothing. I was sick, and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me.’
 “Then these righteous ones will reply, ‘Lord, when did we ever see you hungry and feed you? Or thirsty and give you something to drink?  Or a stranger and show you hospitality? Or naked and give you clothing?  When did we ever see you sick or in prison and visit you?’  “And the King will say, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!’
“Then the King will turn to those on the left and say, ‘Away with you, you cursed ones, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his demons.  For I was hungry, and you didn’t feed me. I was thirsty, and you didn’t give me a drink.  I was a stranger, and you didn’t invite me into your home. I was naked, and you didn’t give me clothing. I was sick and in prison, and you didn’t visit me.’

“Then they will reply, ‘Lord, when did we ever see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and not help you?’ “And he will answer, ‘I tell you the truth, when you refused to help the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were refusing to help me.’  “And they will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous will go into eternal life.”

This is also in accordance with what James (Jesus’ Brother) said:

James 2:14-17

“What good is it, dear brothers and sisters, if you say you have faith but don’t show it by your actions? Can that kind of faith save anyone?  

Suppose you see a brother or sister who has no food or clothing, and you say, “Good-bye and have a good day; stay warm and eat well”—but then you don’t give that person any food or clothing. What good does that do?

 So you see, faith by itself isn’t enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless.”

A DISCIPLE FOCUSES ON MAKING DISCIPLES AND ADVANCING THE KINGDOM THROUGH WITNESSING REGULARLY TO THOSE AROUND THEM ABOUT JESUS CHRIST AND HIS KINGDOM.

This is in accordance with what Jesus said:

Matthew 28:19-20

“Go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.

Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

 

Matthew 24:14  

“And the Good News about the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, so that all nations will hear it; and then the end will come.”

A DISCIPLE SEEKS TO WALK BY AND FOLLOW THE LEADING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.

This is in accordance with what the Apostle Paul wrote:

Galatians 5:16-26  

“I say then, walk by the Spirit and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.  

For the flesh desires what is against the Spirit, and the Spirit desires what is against the flesh; these are opposed to each other, so that you don’t do what you want.  

But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.  

Now the works of the flesh are obvious: 

  • sexual immorality, 
  • moral impurity, 
  • promiscuity,
  • idolatry, 
  • sorcery, 
  • hatreds, 
  • strife, 
  • jealousy, 
  • outbursts of anger, 
  • selfish ambitions, 
  • dissensions, 
  • factions,
  • envy, 
  • drunkenness,
  • carousing, 
  • and anything similar.

I tell you about these things in advance—as I told you before—that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
But the fruit of the Spirit is:

  • love, 
  • joy, 
  • peace,
  • patience, 
  • kindness, 
  • goodness,
  • faith,
  • gentleness, 
  • self-control. 

Against such things there is no law. Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

Since we live by the Spirit, we must also follow the Spirit. We must not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another. “

1 Corinthians 2:10-16  

“Now God has revealed these things to us by the Spirit, for the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God.

For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the spirit of the man that is in him?

In the same way, no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God.

Now we have not received the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who comes from God, so that we may understand what has been freely given to us by God.

We also speak these things, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual things to spiritual people.

But the unbeliever does not welcome what comes from God’s Spirit, because it is foolishness to him; he is not able to understand it since it is evaluated spiritually.

The spiritual person, however, can evaluate everything, yet he himself cannot be evaluated by anyone.  For who has known the Lord’s mind, that he may instruct Him?  But we have the mind of Christ.

A DISCIPLE LIVES AS A CITIZEN OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD/HEAVEN AND MAKES IT THE HIGHEST PRIORITY IN THEIR LIFE.

This is in obedience to Jesus’ command to:

Matthew 6:33

“Seek first His kingdom and His righteousness…”

 

This is also in accordance with what the Apostle Paul wrote: 

Philippians 1:27 and 3:20.  

“Above all, you must live as citizens of heaven, conducting yourselves in a manner worthy of the Good News about Christ.”  … “But we are citizens of heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. And we are eagerly waiting for him to return as our Savior.”

A DISCIPLE LIVES AS A TEMPORARY RESIDENT AND FOREIGNER IN THIS WORLD (LIVE IN THE WORLD, BUT NOT BE OF THE WORLD).

This is in obedience to what Jesus said: 

Matthew 6:19-21

“Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal.  

Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.”

This is in accordance with what the Apostle Peter wrote:

1 Peter 2:11-12  

“Dear friends, I warn you as “temporary residents and foreigners” to keep away from worldly desires that wage war against your very souls.  

Be careful to live properly among your unbelieving neighbors. Then even if they accuse you of doing wrong, they will see your honorable behavior, and they will give honor to God when he judges the world.” 

This is also in accordance with what the Apostle Paul wrote:

Romans 12:1-2 

“…present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”

2 Corinthians 6:14-18

“Don’t team up with those who are unbelievers.

How can righteousness be a partner with wickedness? How can light live with darkness?  What harmony can there be between Christ and the devil? How can a believer be a partner with an unbeliever?  And what union can there be between God’s temple and idols?

For we are the temple of the living God. As God said:

“I will live in them
and walk among them.
I will be their God,
and they will be my people.

Therefore, come out from among unbelievers,
    and separate yourselves from them, says the Lord.
Don’t touch their filthy things,
and I will welcome you.

And I will be your Father,
and you will be my sons and daughters,
says the Lord Almighty.”

This is also in accordance with what the Apostle John wrote:

1 John 2:15-17

“Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in them.  

For everything in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—comes not from the Father but from the world.

The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives forever.”

A DISCIPLE BELIEVES THAT THE BIBLE IS THE WORD OF GOD AND TAKES IT QUITE LITERALLY AND SERIOUSLY.

This is obedience to Jesus who said:

John 12:47-48

“If anyone hears My words and doesn’t keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world but to save the world. 

The one who rejects Me and doesn’t accept My sayings has this as his judge: The word I have spoken will judge him on the last day.”

This is in accordance with what the Apostle Paul wrote:

2 Timothy 3:16-17 

“All Scripture is inspired by God and is profitable for teaching, for rebuking, for correcting, for training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.”

A DISCIPLE BELIEVES IN THE POWER OF PRAYER AND STRIVES TO MAKE IT A VITAL PART OF THEIR DAILY LIFE.

This is in accordance with what Jesus said:

Luke 18:1-8

“He then told them a parable on the need for them to pray always and not become discouraged:  

“There was a judge in a certain town who didn’t fear God or respect man.  And a widow in that town kept coming to him, saying, ‘Give me justice against my adversary.’  

“For a while he was unwilling, but later he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or respect man, yet because this widow keeps pestering me, I will give her justice, so she doesn’t wear me out by her persistent coming.’ 

”Then the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says.  Will not God grant justice to His elect who cry out to Him day and night?  Will He delay to help them?  

I tell you that He will swiftly grant them justice. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He find that faith on earth?”

This is in accordance with what James wrote:

James 5:13-18

“Is anyone among you suffering? He should pray. Is anyone cheerful? He should sing praises.  

Is anyone among you sick? He should call for the elders of the church, and they should pray over him after anointing him with olive oil in the name of the Lord.  

The prayer of faith will save the sick person, and the Lord will restore him to health; if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.

Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, so that you may be healed. The urgent request of a righteous person is very powerful in its effect.  

Elijah was a man with a nature like ours; yet he prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and for three years and six months it did not rain on the land.  

Then he prayed again, and the sky gave rain and the land produced its fruit.”

This is also in accordance with what the Apostle Paul wrote:

Ephesians 6:18-20  

“Pray at all times in the Spirit with every prayer and request, and stay alert in this with all perseverance and intercession for all the saints.  

Pray also for me, that the message may be given to me when I open my mouth to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel.  

For this I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I might be bold enough in Him to speak as I should.”