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So I keep seeing this thing happen that makes me a little bit uncomfortable. As Christians we view accepting Jesus as being as simple as praying a prayer and believing that Jesus died for your sins. It's an exciting thing that we've been taught since we can remember. We CONVERT people to Christianity. Just like I converted from Mtn. Dew to Coke when I moved to Mexico. Not because I liked it better but because they don't have Mtn. Dew in Mexico.
In the Gospels as we're reading about Jesus and John the Baptist's ministries we don't often hear about the people that prayed, "The Prayer" we hear about their DISCIPLES. Those who gave up all things and followed them.
There's a few prime examples that I like to use when discussing this with people.
The rich young ruler came to Jesus and said, "What good deed must I do to have eternal life?" So here we see that He believes that Jesus can grant him eternal life, (Or at least knows how to obtain it). So we can safely say that he has CONVERTED to the belief that Jesus is the savior of man; but he has a misunderstanding that it's about what he has to do. Jesus being the wise man that he is, sees the issue and asks him a few questions. He tells him that he needs to keep the 10 Commandments. The young man says, "Yep, I've done all that since I was a kid!" (I'm paraphrasing of course). Then, as Jesus always seems to do, he said something that no one was quite expecting. He told the RICH young ruler, "That's great. So if you want to be perfect, sell all that you posess and give the money to the poor. Then you will have all that and more in heaven and you'll have eternal life. Then give up your life here and follow me." The rich young ruler walked away sorrowful. What do we see here? We see someone who was converted to the belief that Jesus was the key but couldn't die to himself and become a disciple.
Jesus told Nicodemus that he had to be born again. Put away everything that he WAS and step into new life.
The definition of Disciple is, "A personal follower of Jesus" maybe I sound like a broken record; but here at YWAM we want people to understand the importance of not simply believing that Jesus did what he did; but letting the gravity of his great and endless love and kindness towards us bring us to repentance (Romans 2:4). To love much because we have been forgiven much (Luke 7:47). To truly love because he first loved us (1 John 4:19). To put away everything that we are and be transformed to be more like our Father. To become Disciples. To make Disciples.
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