On mission with Jesus – John 12:26

If anyone serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there will my servant be also. If anyone serves me, the Father will honor him.

The Gospel of John does not include a precise version of the Great Commission. There is no “Go into all the world” or “Go and make disciples,” but this verse offers and interesting take on the subject.

The section of John 12 starts with some Greeks wanting to see Jesus. In all likelihood these are Gentiles and not simply Greek-speaking Jews who happened to be in Jerusalem. They were probably “God-fearers” as believing Gentiles were sometimes called. The early church drew many from this number as the gospel began to go out among the nations.

The verse in question, however, does not so much tell us to go as to follow. If we want to serve Jesus we need to follow him. Moreover, we need to follow him wherever he goes.

I would contend that wherever we might sense that people need Jesus, he is present there already. Go where we might, we are not going to flee from his presence. If our mission takes us to a faraway land, across the country or across the street, when we get there, we will find that Jesus is there already.

Serving Jesus means to go in some sense of the word, but it is going with Jesus or going where he has gone before. The Father will honor those who serve Christ in this fashion, but for right now, Jesus is waiting for us to follow.

Luke 10 – Verse by Verse

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Christ has now turned from Galilee toward Jerusalem.  In this chapter Luke gives us some stories not found in the other Gospels, such as sending the seventy (two) and the Parable of the Good Samaritan.

Luke 10.pdf

Luke 10.mp3

Luke 9 – Verse by Verse

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Up until now, Luke has shown us the ministry of Jesus in and around Galilee. This week will arrive at a turning point. Christ will allow his identity to sink in with his disciples and then turn toward Jerusalem.

Luke 09.pdf

Luke 09.mp3

A Prayer about Following Jesus Prompted by Matthew 4:18-20

18While walking by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon (who is called Peter) and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea, for they were fishermen. 19And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” 20Immediately they left their nets and followed him.

Heavenly Father,

When Christ called his first disciples to follow him, he let them know that their primary focus would change.  Instead of catching fish they would now catch people, drawing others into a relationship with you through Jesus Christ.

How appropriate that some of your first followers did this kind of work!  They knew what it was to try to bring in a catch.  Sometimes they failed and sometimes they met with amazing success.  There was even a time when they fished all night and caught nothing until the risen Christ advised them.  When they listened to him, they caught more than they could bring into the boat.

Just as no fisherman ever catches all the fish in the sea, there will be many who will not listen to the call that we put out for them.  Still, there will be many others who will and it is for these that you have sent us.  

Remind us continually that this is our first priority.  We are to go and make disciples of all the nations.  Help us to no longer live for ourselves, but for you.  Let the Holy Spirit advise us now just as Jesus did those tired disciples.  Let us see souls won for Christ and disciples multiplied.  Let us not only see converts but see those won to you who will then make disciples of others.

And we ask this in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, believing that this is your will for us.

Amen.