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Christian Discipleship


Discipleship means ^one who follows^ or ^one who learns^
and this meaning has not changed over the centuries. The
first disciples must have felt very special just as do
today. Also, the first disciples were not fully understood
and were rejected. This is true for disciples today aswell.
The Bible is the most important reference for a Christian
today. It contains all sorts of stories from the Old
Testament and the New Testament. The New Testament
concentrates on the life of Jesus which is probably more
important to Christians than the Old Testament because
Jesus^ death means that everyone has a chance to have all
of their sins forgiven. The book I will be concentrating on
is the gospel of Mark. Mark ^zoomed in^ on whom Jesus chose
to be his disciples and what they were like. When people
read Mark^s gospel they realise that you can be a disciple
of Jesus no matter who you are. Jesus said, ^It is not the
healthy who need a doctor but the sick. I have not come to
call the righteous but the sinners^ (Mark 2:17)
Many people today see this and are inspired. They see that
they too can be forgiven for all of their sins and lead a
better life. Being a disciple today is nearly the same as
being a disciple in the time of Jesus. As a disciple today
you still have to have a true belief in God and to follow
the word of Jesus. This is also true for disciples 2000
years ago. Christians today do not suffer as much as they
did in the time of Jesus but in some countries Christians
do get persecuted and even attacked or killed. The first
twelve disciples are not so sacrificial and some probably
wouldn^t give their life for God. However, there are still
Christians who would do anything for God but this is only a
small percent of Christians.
The first twelve disciples weren^t just Christians straight
away, they dropped all of their things to follow Jesus and
spent years learning about God. Nowadays, many people
wouldn^t just drop all of their things to follow someone
they know nothing about. Many people are told about God and
Jesus for a long time before becoming a Christian, just
like in Emmanuel College in assemblies and in tutor prayer.
Jesus told taught crowds of people that they must sacrifice
everything to be a proper disciple. Some people want to
learn more about Christianity but don^t want to be
sacrificial in their living making them unable to be a
disciple. The first twelve disciples that were chosen by
Jesus did more things that were wrong than right in the
eyes of God ^ after all they were still learning. This
shows that maybe it^s asking too much to give up everything
to be a Christian.
In Mark 1:14-20 we can see that the first disciples did
give up what they were doing Because Jesus^ words were so
po! werful, ^Come follow me I will make you fishers of
men^. Peter^s denial and Judas Iscariot^s betrayal are two
good examples of disciples^ mistakes. In Mark 14:66-72
Peter denies that he has anything to do with Jesus but in
Mark 14:29-31 Peter tells Jesus that he will not disown
him. By doing this Peter is being dishonest and so in God^s
eyes is being sinful. In Mark 11:17-18 Judas betrays Jesus
to the authorities and so Jesus is killed. Both of these
incidents teach us that we are also allowed to make
mistakes because we are forgiven for them. A man called
David Wilkerson sacrificed a lot to become a Christian and
later went to work in New York in 1959 to work amongst
teenage gangs and convert them into Christians.
The first Teen Challenge centre was opened in Brooklyn in
the spring of 1961. David wrote many books such as ^the
cross and the switchblade^ which has sold over 12 million
copies and has been made into a film under the same name.
David then went on to become a preacher. Just one year
later he set up the World Challenge Incorporated and five
years later he set up the Twin Oaks Leadership Academy in
Texas. During his life, David transformed many peoples
lives into good, healthy ones with the help of God. People
like prostitutes, drug addicts and thieves now know a
better life thanks to David Wilkerson.
I don^t think that anyone can be a true disciple of Jesus
because they are not fully Christians and don^t know enough
about the religion to give their whole life up as a
sacrificial Christian. Mother Teresa and Martin Luther King
made very large sacrifices to become apostles of God, King
gave his life in an attempt to stop racism and Mother
Teresa left her family and way of living to help those in
need in India. They both showed that it is possible to be a
disciple of Jesus if you have the will power and strength.
But these weren^t really disciples but apostles (a person
who is sent). Many people let them fall so deeply into
temptation that it is hard to get out of it and it is hard
for them to stop and say what they are doing is wrong. All
of the time this comes down to how scared they are to make
the self-sacrifice. In England, a rich country, it is hard
for people to give up luxuries and stop being greedy. A
common saying is, ^No matter what you^ve got, you always
want more! ^ and this is very true in a lot of cases. In
the same way as what was said earlier, these people are not
disciples and are not prepared to learn fully about another



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