What Does It Mean to Be a Disciple of Yeshua?

What does it mean to be a disciple of Yeshua? This is a very important question and one we should all reflect on. Let’s read what Yeshua had to say about it.

Matthew 10:24-39

The Meaning of Discipleship

      24“A disciple is not above his teacher, nor a slave above his master. 25“It is enough for the disciple that he become like his teacher, and the slave like his master. If they have called the head of the house Beelzebul, how much more will they malign the members of his household!

      26“Therefore do not fear them, for there is nothing concealed that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. 27“What I tell you in the darkness, speak in the light; and what you hear whispered in your ear, proclaim upon the housetops. 28“Do not fear those who kill the body but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. 29“Are not two sparrows sold for a cent? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. 30“But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31“So do not fear; you are more valuable than many sparrows.

      32“Therefore everyone who confesses Me before men, I will also confess him before My Father who is in heaven. 33“But whoever denies Me before men, I will also deny him before My Father who is in heaven.

      34“Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. 35“For I came to SET A MAN AGAINST HIS FATHERAND A DAUGHTER AGAINST HER MOTHERAND A DAUGHTER-IN-LAW AGAINST HER MOTHER-IN-LAW36and A MANS ENEMIES WILL BE THE MEMBERS OF HIS HOUSEHOLD.

      37“He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me; and he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. 38“And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. 39“He who has found his life will lose it, and he who has lost his life for My sake will find it.

There are some important considerations about discipleship after Yeshua.

  • A disciple does not seek to be greater than his teacher, but rather to become like his teacher.
  • Do not fear those who come against you. Do not hide what you have learned, but rather speak it and live it boldly.
  • Rather than fear men who can only destroy your body, fear the one who can destroy body and soul… that means Yahweh. We often ignore how Yahweh feels about the choices we make and instead try to please men.
  • Yahweh loves us. We are important to Him. So, too, are the animals important to Him, even ones seemingly unimportant like sparrows.
  • If we want Yeshua to confess us before the Father, we likewise must confess Him before men. There is no such thing as a private faith that we hide to avoid confrontation or uncomfortable situations. There are situations where we may need to leave to avoid physical harm, but the concept of living entirely hidden or private in our faith should be discarded.
  • Do not expect peace. Truly living for Christ will create conflict even within families. We will have to decide who is most important and the answer for a true disciple must be Yeshua over all others.
  • We will all have a cross to  bear in some way. If we turn away from it because it is too hard or we don’t want to face difficulty, we are not worthy of Yeshua.
  • We will only truly find life by laying down our life, our desires, our plans, and submitting to live for Yeshua no matter the cost.

Truly being a disciple is not an easy thing. It is not for the faint of heart. But the reward is amazing to live alongside our God and serve Him.

I encourage all who want to continue on the path of being a disciple to consider investing some time in a few key teachings we have compiled at Hearing From Jesus.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

 

What Did Yeshua Tell His Disciples Before Sending Them Out?

What did Yeshua tell His disciples before sending them out? Some of this is directed specifically at the 12, and not everyone, and some of it applies to all of us still today.

Matthew 10:1-15

The Twelve Disciples; Instructions for Service

      1Jesus summoned His twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every kind of disease and every kind of sickness.

      2Now the names of the twelve apostles are these: The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; and James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; 3Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; 4Simon the Zealot, and Judas Iscariot, the one who betrayed Him.

      5These twelve Jesus sent out after instructing them: “Do not go in the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter any city of the Samaritans; 6but rather go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 7“And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ 8“Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons. Freely you received, freely give. 9“Do not acquire gold, or silver, or copper for your money belts, 10or a bag for your journey, or even two coats, or sandals, or a staff; for the worker is worthy of his support. 11“And whatever city or village you enter, inquire who is worthy in it, and stay at his house until you leave that city. 12“As you enter the house, give it your greeting. 13“If the house is worthy, give it your blessing of peace. But if it is not worthy, take back your blessing of peace. 14“Whoever does not receive you, nor heed your words, as you go out of that house or that city, shake the dust off your feet. 15“Truly I say to you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment than for that city.

Clearly Yeshua has authority over unclean spirits and healing the sick. Take note these are two different afflictions. The are mentioned separately. In this scripture, He gave authority over this to the twelve, not to all followers for all times.

Yeshua instructed the twelve to only go to the lost sheep of Israel and not to the Gentiles. We receive instruction further on in the Bible where we are told to go to all the nations, so for us, we know to go to everyone (Matthew 28:19). Yeshua went first to the lost sheep of Israel. When the message was rejected there, he went out to others (Matthew 22:1-14).

There was clear instruction to give freely what you have received from God freely. They were not supposed to charge for healing and casting out demons. They were instructed not to acquire wealth on this mission. However there is also a note that they should not bring extra provisions as the “worker is worthy of his support”. There was an expectation that the people being brought the good news would support them as messengers from Yahweh.  This one is interesting to split how to apply today generally vs. specifically to the twelve. I think it is clear those with healing power are not to charge others for it and make money off it. It also seems reasonable to accept basic support from those to whom you are preaching the message of the gospel. Of course, we know from elsewhere in scripture that Paul did not accept money to support him (at least not in Corinth) while on his missionary journeys (1 Corinthians 9:8-14). Paul reinforces that the LORD said that one who proclaims the gospel can make their living from doing so, but also chose not to personally because he thought it would hinder the gospel, perhaps specific to the situation in Corinth. I think this applies to us today as well as to the twelve. However, the emphasis is that they should not get wealthy by healing. It also implies to me that there is an expectation that one who preaches the gospel is not accumulating great wealth by doing so, but simply making a living… and some may choose even to “self fund” by having a day job as similar to Paul.

Lastly, we see that where the messengers are not received, they are to move on. This applies still to us today. We are not to simply stay at one place trying to force people to convert. Generally speaking we are to shake the dust from our sandals and move on to the next village, which may receive us. Many can get consumed trying to force a single “conversion” of someone. However, their efforts may be more effective if they moved on to others who are prepared to receive the message. Of course, if Yahweh directs you to stay in one tough situation where the message is directed, then do so.

Please do not overlook the faith and courage that was required of the twelve as they went out and took nothing extra and trusted in the instructions of the LORD to guide and in the people who received them to provide. Imagine yourself in that position to get a better feeling for what they experienced.

Prayerfully reflect on the instructions Yeshua gave His disciples before sending them out and write down some key ways in which it affects you in your life. Ask the Father to help you in how to apply it to your life today.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

 

We Should All Humble Ourselves Seeking Atonement

It is easy for us to embrace celebrations that are “fun”. Often, even holidays that had a significant meaning, like Thanksgiving started as a way to give thanks to God, can be overwhelmed by the distractions of celebrating. Most people really breeze over the original purpose of Thanksgiving and now it is about football and turkey and gluttonous eating. Very little time is spent, if any, giving thanks to YHWH for all He provides as was the original intent.

We would truly benefit in our relationship with our Lord if we would embrace the holy days He instructed. We should all humble ourselves before Him often through the year, but certainly have a day set aside to come humbly before the Lord is a very good idea. It is not focused on football or food, but rather on our relationship with our Father. We are to humble ourselves and contemplate our need for atonement, repentance and forgiveness from sin. He does not want us getting distracted during this holy day, and thus sets aside another Sabbath day of rest for it.

Leviticus 23:25-44

The Day of Atonement

26The LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 27“On exactly the tenth day of this seventh month is the day of atonement; it shall be a holy convocation for you, and you shall humble your souls and present an offering by fire to the LORD. 28“You shall not do any work on this same day, for it is a day of atonement, to make atonement on your behalf before the LORD your God. 29“If there is any person who will not humble himself on this same day, he shall be cut off from his people. 30“As for any person who does any work on this same day, that person I will destroy from among his people. 31“You shall do no work at all. It is to be a perpetual statute throughout your generations in all your dwelling places. 32“It is to be a sabbath of complete rest to you, and you shall humble your souls; on the ninth of the month at evening, from evening until evening you shall keep your sabbath.”

33Again the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 34“Speak to the sons of Israel, saying, ‘On the fifteenth of this seventh month is the Feast of Booths for seven days to the LORD. 35‘On the first day is a holy convocation; you shall do no laborious work of any kind. 36‘For seven days you shall present an offering by fire to the LORD. On the eighth day you shall have a holy convocation and present an offering by fire to the LORD; it is an assembly. You shall do no laborious work.

I encourage each of you to join me in this holy day in which we humble ourselves before God. We should take this opportunity to focus on the wonderful gift God sent in Yeshua. Yeshua died for our sins. Through His perfect life and then death for our sins He has made it possible for us to be reconciled to YHWH. He was the sacrificial lamb on our behalf. Let us not take Yeshua for granted and miss out on our need for His sacrifice due to our sin.

Romans 3

10as it is written,
“THERE IS NONE RIGHTEOUS, NOT EVEN ONE;

On our own we can never be made righteous. It would be like trying to jump the Grand Canyon. One may be able to jump further than another, but none can span the gap. We can be made righteous only through Christ, who in this canyon metaphor serves as a bridge to enable us to come before the Lord and be reconciled.

I would encourage each of you to study more about our Creator’s appointed times. I have provided a few links to help you get started, but you can search on your own, of course.

 

  • JacobsTent.org is a fellowship that meets in Tennessee and live streams events for Moedim and regular Sabbath services weekly. It is more than just a study, but brings you in to be part of a fellowship worshipping and learning together.

I hope that studying and learning about our Creator’s appointed times, and then following them, will be as enriching for you and your family as it has been for me and mine.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Yom Kippur – The Day of Atonement

Over the course of my life I have spent significant amount of time in Catholic, Baptist, and evangelical churches. None of the ones I attended ever even came close to teaching about YHWH’s appointed times, or Mo’edim. They seem determined to stick to popular man-made holidays commonly celebrated by Christians and non Christians alike. As I have journeyed into deeper relationship with the Lord over many years, the Bible has really come alive to me. It is amazing how much rich heritage is being missed by the Christian church today. They typically do not teach the whole Bible as still relevant and true today. They may say it is, but their teaching leaves much untouched and untaught.

My family and I find observing the Mo’edim, God’s appointed times, to be truly enriching in our relationship with Him. I encourage you to join us. You will have to do some study on your own, however, as churches will just not teach it.

The Day of Atonement, or Yom Kippur, is a holy day set aside by YHWH annually for us to focus on atonement for our sins. We are to rest and be humble. It is a permanent statute. These holy days are not just for Jewish people and they are not obsolete. They both look back at what the Lord has already done and look forward to what He will do in the future. As a matter of fact, the day of atonement is now even more significant for those of us who follow Christ as we can focus on the forgiveness we receive through Christ and his sacrifice for us.

Leviticus 23:26-32

The Day of Atonement

     26The LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 27“On exactly the tenth day of this seventh month is the day of atonement; it shall be a holy convocation for you, and you shall humble your souls and present an offering by fire to the LORD. 28“You shall not do any work on this same day, for it is a day of atonement, to make atonement on your behalf before the LORD your God. 29“If there is any person who will not humble himself on this same day, he shall be cut off from his people. 30“As for any person who does any work on this same day, that person I will destroy from among his people. 31“You shall do no work at all. It is to be a perpetual statute throughout your generations in all your dwelling places. 32“It is to be a sabbath of complete rest to you, and you shall humble your souls; on the ninth of the month at evening, from evening until evening you shall keep your sabbath.”

We need not make animal sacrifices for atonement any longer, as Yeshua has paid the price for our sin once and for all. However, we will still face judgment when we die or Yeshua returns. Let us take heed to atone for our sins, repenting and seeking forgiveness from the Lord.

2 Corinthians 5:10

10For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.

Of course we can say, but we should seek forgiveness all year long, and that is correct, but then why would one object to a day focused on coming humbly before the LORD and seeking forgiveness and asking him to help us know and turn away from our sin.

I still have more to learn about the Hebrew calendar (really the Creator’s calendar), but I am learning more each year. You can research a variety of websites that provide information on the Hebrew calendar, several even focus on it from a Messianic or Christian perspective. Keep in mind, the Hebrew calendar starts at sundown and ends at sundown and not “midnight to midnight” as our western calendar does.

It can be overwhelming when you first get started, but just take it in bite sized chunks and keep seeking to get closer to Him with every step. Because we have changed away from YHWH’s calendar to the Gregorian calendar, there is some debate as to when the feasts are celebrated exactly. They reference the Creator’s calendar and not what we are used to. It is very clear which day in His calendar are to be recognized, but the challenge comes in converting that into the Gregorian calendar most of us use daily. Which exact date you choose is not the most important aspect to get started, in my opinion.  I suggest researching at the sites below or on your own search and picking one of the dates proposed and get started. Do not get overwhelmed by trying to learn all the history at once. Just get started, seek the Lord, study His word, and and start to experience a deeper relationship with Him.

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Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? Are you living today filled with the peace and joy of truly knowing and following Jesus Christ? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

May the Word of the LORD Spread Rapidly and Be Glorified

Let us pray for one another.

2 Thessalonians 3:1-5

    1Finally, brethren, pray for us that the word of the Lord will spread rapidly and be glorified, just as it did also with you; 2and that we will be rescued from perverse and evil men; for not all have faith. 3But the Lord is faithful, and He will strengthen and protect you from the evil one. 4We have confidence in the Lord concerning you, that you are doing and will continue to do what we command. 5May the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God and into the steadfastness of Christ.

What a powerful short segment of scripture.

  • Pray for the word of the LORD to spread rapidly and be glorified.
  • Pray for one another to be rescued from perverse and evil men.
  • Recognize the Lord as faithful and our protector.
  • Have confidence in the Lord and encourage others to continue obeying His instruction.
  • Pray for one another that the Lord would direct our hearts into the love of God and steadfastness of Christ.

Wow. Prayerfully reflect on this and don’t rush through it. Dwell on it. Share it with others.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

 

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