Radical Discipleship – Part 1

Dec 23, 2014 1447

by Edward Fudge

dare-to-be-a-discipleWe know of only one man whom Jesus told to give away all that he had. This man already had wealth, youth, and power; he came asking Jesus what to do to have eternal life. Yes, he is a real doer, he tells himself. He can certainly do anything Jesus can think up and put into words. He told Jesus already about his outstanding observance scores–from his Bar Mitzvah forward he has done everything God’s commandments required.

Then came Jesus’ answer, and it burst his fanciful thinking like a balloon full of hot air. Jesus didn’t quote a single command . He said the man should sell everything he owned, give the proceeds to charity, and follow him. Suddenly this rich young ruler knew there was at least one thing he could not do, and that was to do without (Mark 10:17-22; Matt. 19:16-20; Luke 18:18- 23).

God intends that we all experience “radical” discipleship–in the original meaning of the word. It is “radical” because it goes to the “root” of our being to change us into Christ’s likeness–the outward fruit of an ongoing inner work by God’s transforming Spirit (John 15:1-8; Rom. 12:1-2; Col. 1:3-6, 9- 13). Such radical discipleship changes our character, reorients our priorities, and transforms our values. It no longer matters whether we are male or female, slave or free, single or married, Jew or Gentile. What matters now is entrusting all such incidentals to God and entrusting ourselves to him for use as he sees fit (1 Cor. 7:7-40).

We all have an assignment–we are created in Christ Jesus for good works that God has prepared in advance for us to do (Eph. 2:10). But how do we identify these pre-prepared acts and deeds, and how do we do them in the natural course of our everyday lives? God willing, those will be some of our questions in Part 2, as we bring this year to a close and enter into a new year of God’s grace.

– Edward Fudge (Used with permission from GracEmail)

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