When Jesus called the disciples, He gave a simple command, “Follow Me.” He still gives that command to sinners. This week we begin a new series of episodes focused on knowing the person of Jesus Christ so that we can better follow Him.
To begin, we must understand what the command “Follow” entails. It involves two things: observation and imitation. We must first observe Jesus in the Scripture. Scour the pages of the Bible, both Old and New Testaments to see how Jesus is described. See how He lived. See how He obeyed the Father. Then imitate.
This can seem difficult. We may be tempted to believe the lie that if we were in the disciples' shoes if we had lived during Jesus’ incarnation, we would have an easier time following this command. But this makes Jesus a liar because He said it was better for us that He leave and go the Father.
What the disciples had, what Paul had, is the same means of grace we have. We have the Holy Spirit who will help us fix our eyes on Christ. And whatever we fix our eyes on will be what we fashion ourselves after. If our eyes are fixed on Christ, we will observe and imitate Him in even the smallest steps of life.
All resources and Scriptures mentioned in this episode are linked below under Show Notes.
0:00 John and Matthew begin a new series on the podcast examining what it means to follow Christ. What does it mean to walk through life with the living Lord?
3:00 John explains why the metaphor of walking with Christ is such a simple and helpful one that deserves a great deal of mediation and application. Walking is a simple act and so many of them seem inconsequential. But if you really want to know a man, watch how he walks across the trajectory of his life.
6:00 Just as it is important for us to understand what Scripture is saying and, we must understand what Scripture is not saying. We are talking about following Christ in two spheres of response: His response to His Father and His response to the humanity around Him.
7:00 Following Christ is going to include two things, observation and imitation. Following Christ means we must not zone out and suddenly think upon Christ and wonder how He would respond in a particular situation. We must intently observe and imitate in the little steps of life.
9:00 We are all tempted to believe the lie that if we lived with Jesus for three years, as the disciples did, we would be better Christians. But that distrusts the statement Jesus made that it was better for us that He went to the Father.
11:00 We are a formative people. We fashion ourselves after the thing we believe has the greatest worth. Walking with Christ means setting everything other than Christ aside and fashioning ourselves only after Him.
12:00 John gives a negative example of this in Isaiah 40. In it, God not only shows the worthlessness of following idols, He also shows the worthlessness of the idols themselves.
15:00 A positive example is found in 2 Corinthians 3. Paul says looking into a mirror reveals who we look like. Paul didn’t have modern mirrors that show every detail in a quick glance. He had polished metal that required intention and focus. If we are going to look like Christ, we must gaze at Him in like manner.
18:00 After mentioning these two examples, John goes back to the previous lie that if we were walking with Jesus physically, as the disciples did, we would be more like Him. Paul explodes that lie. He had nothing more than we have. He didn’t walk with Jesus physically. He had New Testament documents and the Holy Spirit. Yet he says, “Be imitators of me.”
20:00 John introduces the topics we will discuss in greater detail in upcoming episodes. First, the Old Testament images of Christ. They are a bit fuzzy, like old black and white photos. But there is enough there for us to recognize the image of our Lord. The New Testament is filled with high-definition images and expert testimony on the person of Christ.
25:00 John and Matthew come back together to discuss application. Understanding the command to walk with Christ involves how we read Scripture, how we repent, and how we grow in Christ.
For this week's Supporter Appreciation Episode, we return to hearing the testimonies of different believers in Christ Church New Albany.
After hearing what careful evangelism looks like for so many weeks, we thought it would be a good idea to hear how God drew different people to Himself. We began this short series of testimonies with Media Gratiae's office manager Acey Floyd and continue it this week with University of Mississippi law professor Chris Green.
We give access to the Supporter Appreciation Episode as a tangible way of showing appreciation for those who partner with Media Gratiae monthly. If you are a monthly supporter, click here for the additional content. As with everything we do, we never want finances to be a genuine barrier between our content and those who want to access it. If that's you, reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
1 Corinthians 4:16
1 Corinthians 11:1