What It Means to Follow Jesus
We often refer to ourselves as followers of Christ, but what does that really mean? When Jesus called Peter, Andrew, James, and John to follow Him, they physically left what they were doing to be with Him. The disciples had tangible evidence: They could see His direction with their eyes and hear His words with their ears. But how do we follow Jesus today? As we examine today’s passage, we’ll see four essential elements that show us how to be followers of Christ.
- The disciples heard Jesus’ voice. Today Christ speaks to us through His Word, giving instruction and guidance through direct commands and prohibitions, spiritual principles, and biblical examples. And within us, we have the Holy Spirit, who directs our path and corrects us when we go astray.
- They obeyed without delay. Once the disciples heard the Lord’s command, they immediately complied. Following Jesus requires that we not only do what He says, but also when and how He says to do it.
- They left something behind. To follow Jesus, the disciples abandoned the comforts of home and the security of a regular salary. Other believers might be called to give up something completely different.
- They pursued the higher purpose Christ offered them. Instead of simply making a living, Christ promised them a life with eternal purpose—becoming fishers of men for the kingdom of God.
Being a Christ follower is not merely an identification with Him; it’s a commitment of obedience that demands leaving behind anything that gets in the way of living fully for Him.