ARE YOU A DISCIPLE OF CHRIST JESUS OR A CHURCH MEMBER?
It’s very sad that people have worked very hard to be church members otherthan True Disciples of Christ Jesus, that’s why they have been deceived with empty Gospel of prosperity, wealth and other empty Gospels, but we were given a commission to do, For Jesus Christ said we should make Disciples of All nations not church members. Mathew28;18-19. But the pastors today have distorted the word of God and focused on making Church members with big and huge congregations and have led the flock into destruction for Hell.
We shall look at the difference between a church member and a disciple of Jesus Christ and then the characteristics of A true Disciple of Jesus Christ. With the above subject you can see whether you will make it to heaven because that should be the main aim for a disciple of Jesus Christ. MATHEW6;19-21
DISCIPLE OF CHRIST JESUS OR CHURCH MEMBER? Matthew 28:19 “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”
Jesus Christ gave us the command to make disciples of all nations, which is what the Great Commission is all about. But the difference is the case in our churches today. People are focused on making members for their different denominational churches in the name of working for God. But if you look closely to the Master’s commandment, He didn’t say, “Make church members of all the nations” He said, “make disciples of all the nations” Matthew 28:19.
There is a clear difference between making disciples and making church members; there is a crystal clear difference between being a Christ’s disciple and being a church member. You can be a certified, recognized and appreciated church’s member, who is well known in the church, did all sorts of New Covert’s, Believers or Membership trainings, and yet you are not a disciple of Christ. You can go through all these “so called” workers trainings, ministers trainings or Pastoral trainings and yet you are not a disciple of Jesus Christ, you can be so committed into your church, that most of your time and money are spent on different church’s activities, programs and services, and you are not a disciple of Jesus Christ. You can be devoted to your church as a member, as a worker, as a leader, minister or pastor and yet not a disciple of Christ Jesus.
The Great Commission Jesus Christ gave to us is, “Make disciples of all nations” But the devil has deceived us and turned it to “make church members of all nations”. That is the reason you see every denominations struggling to have large number of members that is the reason you see them everywhere, every street, they want to have their own denominational branches or assemblies or parishes, whatever name they call them.
Think about it, if a church or a Pastor says they want to create another branch or parish in a particular street, is it because there are no existing biblical churches in that particular location? If the motive is that all or most denominations in the area are unbiblical and teaching errors, that is good. But they create their new branches there and preach and teach the same thing. They don’t care about that, their mission and focus is to make members from every street, every town, city and state, but not necessary in every village. Because they are not after the mission of making disciples, they only want to make members for their denominations.
You will see in a particular street where different denominational churches are staying side by side. You will see a two, three storey building of different denominations on each floor, the ground floor is denomination A, the first floor is another denomination of B, and second floor is a different Pentecostal denomination C. When church A is doing Sunday School, church B who does not do Sunday School in her denomination will be doing heavy Praise Worship with loud shouts and instruments, and church C will be having a “fireful” and prophetic moment of prayer; all at the same time with their speakers loud enough so as not to be overshadowed and suppressed by the other church. Everything will be boiling in the air, in the name of serving God? This is because they are looking for members not disciples. It is confusion; it may be seen as united confusion, friendly confusion or prophetic confusion; whatever name we call it, such is confusion and God is not an Author of confusion.
Every church wants to have the largest congregation, many branches or parishes and many rich people, all in the name of the Lord. Competition and rivalry among denominations all in the name of the Lord.
It’s a terrible thing in the Christianity of today that the devil has turned the Great Commission to the great competition. The devil has diverted and deceived pastors and churches to think and believe that making church members, creating more parishes or branches are as the same as making disciples. You see more denominations and more parishes of churches today, and at the same time you see more sins, more evil, more competitions, and more immorality. Why? Because most of these pastors and their churches are only making members not disciples. Anybody can be a member, but a not a disciple.
Anybody can be a worker, an ordained minister of a church. Is it not to be regular, committed and do their different classes? But it takes those who are genuinely saved, regenerated, who have forsaken their sins and living new life in Jesus to be a true disciple of Jesus Christ. John 8:10, 11, 31, 32.
THE DIFFERENCE IS CLEAR! There are clear differences between a church members and a disciple of Jesus Christ:
A disciple of Christ is somebody who genuinely comes to Jesus Christ for the salvation of his soul and eternal life and keeping following Him for the bread of life. John 6: 63-67. But a church member may have other purposes like problem solving, prosperity, prophecies, healing, etc.
A disciple of Christ is somebody who comes to Jesus and repent from all his sins, forsake them and continuing in repentance and in the Word of God. Acts 14:21,22. A church member does not necessarily need to be genuinely saved; they may just answer altar call and be committed and faithful to the church ordinances. Are you a disciple or a church member?
To make disciples, Christ, and Him alone must be preached with the sole aim of leading people to salvation in Christ and helping them to grow and live in holiness, truth and righteousness, and to make heaven. To make members, no need of priority of genuine repentance, salvation, restitution and holiness of life, just preach what will attract people in the name of Jesus. If your purpose is to make people get to heaven, it’s not a must to make them members of your church. You can have thousands members in your church and none of them is a disciple of Christ. The population of a church is not in proportion to the spiritual value of that church. The number of the members in a church is not in any proportion to the number of Christ’s disciples in that church.
ANYTHING GOES! Many pastors and church is looking for numerical growth today, they want to make members of every nation, every city and every street, and they are ready to preach and perform anything, ready to change any standard to have this dream of mega church come through.
Some denominations say their vision is to have their denominations at every corner of every street and to make members for their denominations from every family. That is a human and personal ambition and not Christ’s ambition. It’s an idea generated from personal ambition to build personal empire not the kingdom of God. You see, there are some things that you don’t need to speak in tongues or have the gift of prophecy before you know if they are biblical or not; all you need to do is to check the Word of God and compare them with the Scriptures that doesn’t change. Jesus said, “make disciples of all nations” He didn’t say, “make your church members of all nations” The only means such denominations can justify their visions or missions is if they claim and prove that their church is the only biblical church through which people can get to heaven and through their church alone people can become disciples of Christ. But if you don’t believe your church is the only church recognized by God and that not all your church’s member are real disciples of Christ, then you don’t need to have your church’s member in every family and at every corner. Christ’s mission is to have His disciples in every family not in your own denomination, except if you believe only your church members are Christ’s disciples in the world.
Most of the missions in the ministries today are selfish, self ego generated missions. Pastors are just building their own empires in the name of God. Pastors are seeking their personal glory in the name of working for God. They are using you to fulfill their own ambition and personal agenda, to boost their personal ego in the name of working for God. They want to have large congregations; they want to have the biggest church auditoriums –multibillionaire, so that it will be written at the back of their books – for that, they are ready to swear on both Testaments, to say anything with God’s name to convince you.
SOME UN-BIBLICAL METHODS OF MAKING AND MAINTAINING MEMBERS
(1) Membership Certificate Most pastors and their churches today are using various strategies to make and maintain members. Some even go to the point of making their church members to have membership certificate. That is funny. They may tell you, “If you don’t go through our membership class and have certificate, you are not a bona fide member of this church” there are different classes in different churches today, to promote holiness and maintain old standards or maintain members? You wonder why you didn’t hear such things among our founding fathers of faith. Well, you can certify somebody as a genuine member of your church, right? You can be certified by your pastor or General/Senior Pastor as a genuine member but you may not be part of the Disciples of Christ. Having your name written in your church’s book does not mean your name is written in the Book of life in heaven.
Paper certificate is useless; membership certificate is immaterial to becoming disciple of Christ. It may be part of the modern system to maintain church membership. If our genuine aim is to help people to be true Disciples of Christ, there is no need making them to be your certified church members as if being recognized as a genuine member of your church has anything to do with being recognized in heaven. Only Jesus knows His own in a church, no pastor can judge by certificate the true and genuine members of Christ’s kingdom. The classes and certificates are not enough evidence to certify people as genuine disciples of God. Only God can determine His own in the public meeting, so such act is usurping God’s territory and very inadequate.
You see, in those days, our founding fathers of faith were not using all these human ideas, they only preached Jesus alone, and it was evidential in their own personal lives and the lives of the members, because the Bible says by their fruits you will know them, not by their church’s certificates or by their commitment to their church classes and activities. Being a devoted church member or minister does not imply you are a true disciple of Christ. Your church can say anything to sooth you, to make you so confident as if you are a candidate of heaven as long you come to their church, if you build your life on that, it will amount to disappointment at the end of your life.
Some churches don’t allow their single sisters to go and marry in another denominations, maybe they can allow their single brothers to marry from another denominations and bring the women to their church but not that their sisters would go and marry in another church and then join the church. If your ambition is for kingdom of God, not for your own personal denomination, you don’t need such smart not-biblical tactic. The Bible standard for choosing marital partner is simply “only in the Lord” 1 Corinthians 7:39. It doesn’t says, “Only in your denominational church” a selfless pastor will not care if his single members marry from his church or not, he will only care if the person is in the Lord, not necessarily in your denomination.
(2) Motivational Methods Some pastors, in the process of making more members, they changed their messages to motivational, miraculous speaking in order to sooth people. Since many people want preachers that will deceive them by telling them what they want to hear not what they need to hear. So to make many members you must make mention what the many people want to hear at many times. People want motivational messages not rebuking messages, people want prosperity messages not message of purity, people want to go to churches where they perform miracles not where they practice holiness. So many preachers have become motivational speakers; others go to the point of getting demonic powers to perform miracles. You preach prosperity, breakthrough, faith for fantastic living and to overcome problems of life, but not the faith for holy life or to overcome temptations. They preach materials blessings and business success with long life. They sweeten their messages to psych your emotion and make you scream, to motivate you in your sins not from your sin. And you feel calmed, cooled and comfortable in your sins but uncomfortable with poverty.
With these, preachers can only make members for their denominations; with these, you can only become a member of a denomination and not disciple of Christ Jesus. You can be busing preaching, praying and sacrificing in the name of serving God, but all for nothing for your eternity. If your preaching, praying and teachings are not turning people to righteousness, all your effort are baseless. The Bible says in the book of Daniel 12:3, “Those who turn many to righteousness shall shine like stars forever and ever.” That is for people who are wise not the foolish ones.
If your purpose for the ministry or God’s work is to turn people to prosperity, to business success, wealthy life, healing and miracles, you are a big looser because no eternal reward for you. Only those who turn people to righteousness are recognized and will be rewarded in heaven. You may be popular here on earth and prospered and rich, but when this world passes away, your gains also pass away. If you are a member or minister of any of church but you are not living a righteous life, you are a great looser. Imagine your offerings, sacrifices and services are waste, your effort and giving are useless. You are just busy for nothing, your pastors and church can be deceiving you to continue like that as if everything is fine with you, they can try to misinterpret the Bible to calm you; Satan can be throwing miracles into your way in the name of testimonies to make you feel as if nothing is wrong or God is okay with you, but you alone has the power to choose not to be deceived by people or satan. DANIEL12:2-3
Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave up himself for us as a fragrant sacrifice and offering to God, But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or any kind of impurity or of greed, because these are improper in God’s holy People. Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking which are out of place. But rather thanks giving, for this you can be sure: No immoral, impure, or greedy person- such a man is an idolater—has any inheritance in the Kingdom of Christ and of God.
Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient. Therefore do not be partners with them. For you were once in darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of Light. For the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth and find what pleases God.Ephesians5; 1-10.”
I think it’s all seen from the above scripture that Jesus Christ died so that we may live a righteous life not a sinful life, as people may take it that he died for all sins that I don’t need to repent, For I assuredly I tell such teachings are heresies and it’s a wrong doctrine from Satan who has been sinning from the beginning and For Jesus Christ appeared to destroy his devil works (1john3; 10). For God is Holy and he wants us to be Holy and he sent his beloved Jesus Christ to give us all his righteousness and holiness because we were rotting in sin and we needed a redeemer, so I rebuke all those false teachings that people are having that there is no need of repentance because Jesus Christ died for all the sins. By his grace he called us from our sinning ways to come into a righteous life.
Let’s look at the true disciples of Jesus Christ and the fake disciples with associated characteristics.
CHARACTERISTICS OF A TRUE DISCIPLE OF JESUS CHRIST.
When we receive Christ many things happen. Our sins are forgiven; we become children of God and joint-heirs with Christ Romans8;17. We begin the great adventure of following Jesus. In the gospels, those following Jesus are called “disciples.” This session considers what it means to be a disciple of Jesus.
The essence of discipleship is our right response to God’s call on our lives. Discipleship is a matter of being willing to become all that God wants us to be.”
A. Disciples are learners.
The Greek word for `disciple’ is mathetes, which means `learner.’ Disciples are those with a heart for God and a teachable attitude. Disciples are ready to receive whatever Jesus has to offer; His forgiveness, love, direction and commandments.”[Have the class individually come up with at least two key traits of a disciple from Matthew 11:28-30. Have a few students share their findings.
1. They follow Jesus and learn from Him (Matthew 11:28-30).
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30
“Disciples come to Jesus as the one who will meet their every need. He is the one who will give them `rest’ in the midst of life’s burdens. Disciples are those who take Jesus’ yoke upon them, linking their direction and priorities in life with those of Jesus, sharing in His life and ministry . Disciples are those who `learn from Jesus.’ Disciples’ entire lives revolve around learning, growing and changing more and more into the image of Jesus Christ .
2. Discipleship is a life-long process (Philippians 3:12-14).
“Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:12-14
“Disciples are learners for a lifetime. We will never fully arrive as people who are complete reflections of Jesus Christ. But, disciples keep moving in that direction, learning from Jesus throughout their lives.”
B. Disciples are in the process of becoming like their Master.
1. When fully trained, disciples are like their Master (Luke 6:40).
“Just as students desire to be like their teacher, so disciples want to become like their Master, the Lord Jesus. Toward this end we are to strive as we grow and are trained. Jesus’ ultimate desire for His disciples is that they be like Him.”
2. Disciples of Jesus increasingly reflect His character, conduct and commitments (Ephesians 4:13).
“As we become more and more like our Master, we will increasingly reflect the Lord Jesus in all that we are and do. Discipleship is a commitment of our entire lives toward the end of becoming entirely like Jesus.”
SOME ESSENTIAL CHARACTERISTICS OF DISCIPLES OF JESUS
“There are many things that disciples do by way of activities. We will look at these in detail in a later message. In this point we want to discuss only essential characteristics of disciples–traits which distinguish disciples of Jesus from those who are not serious about following Him. These essential characteristics are the foundation for all we do by way of discipleship activities. Who we are is the basis for all we do.”
A. Disciples of Jesus are growing in their love for God and others (Matthew 22:36-40).
“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” Matthew 22:36
1. God calls us to love Him with our whole heart, soul and mind.
“The aspiration, pursuit and compelling commitment of disciples is to love God with their entire being. Our love for God determines the question of the lordship of Christ. To love God is to submit our entire life to Him. We do this not out of obligation, but in response to His great love for us. Our love for God is the source out of which flows all our specific acts of obedience under the lordship of Christ.”
2. God calls us to love others as ourselves .
“1 John 4:19-21 says that our love for God is manifested in our love for others. In fact, we cannot say that we love God unless we love others also.”
B. Disciples of Jesus submit to Christ as Lord of their lives (Luke 14:25-33).
Large crowds were traveling with Jesus, and turning to them he said. “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sistersyes, even his own lifehe cannot be my disciple. And anyone who does not carry his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple. “Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Will he not first sit down and estimate the cost to see if he has enough money to complete it. For if he lays the foundation and is not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule him. Saying, ‘This fellow began to build and was not able to finish.’ Or suppose a king is about to go to war against another king. Will he not first sit down and consider whether he is able with ten thousand men to oppose the one coming against him with twenty thousand. If he is not able, he will send a delegation while the other is still a long way off and will ask for terms of peace. In the same way, any of you who does not give up everything he has cannot be my disciple.” Luke 14:25-33
Jesus is to be Lord of:
1. Our relationships (v. 26).
“Our love for our family dims in comparison to our love for Jesus. Jesus demands nothing less than first place in our lives, even taking priority over family relationships.”
2. Our possessions
“Jesus calls His disciples to submit all that they own to His lordship.”3. Our total selves.
“Jesus wants to be Lord not just of our possessions and relationships, but of our entire lives. He asks that nothing be held back. Disciples are people who do what Jesus Christ wants them to do. You cannot be a disciple if you are not obeying Him as a way of life.”
C. Disciples of Jesus seek the kingdom of God (Luke 9:57-62).
1. The priority of the kingdom.
“Jesus told this man that the kingdom of God laid claim to his life even over the legitimate obligations he had to his family.”
2. The necessity of single-mindedness.
“Our pursuit of God’s kingdom demands our single-minded commitment. Once again, even the legitimate desire to serve our family must be submitted to Jesus’ call to serve Him as disciples.”
D. Disciples of Jesus are internally motivated to follow and serve God.
Why is this true?
1. Because of who God is and what God has done for us (Romans 5:6-8; 2 Corinthians 5:14; Hebrews 12:28-29).
“The more we know Jesus, the more we will have a picture of who God is. The more we meditate on what Jesus has done for us, the more we will serve Him out of a thankful heart. Jesus wants us to serve Him out of love for Him.”
2. Because of the eternal significance of ministering to others (1 Corinthians 15:58).
“Jesus calls us to a ministry of eternal significance. Our labor as disciples is never in vain. We have the opportunity to be used of God to see lives changed for eternity. As disciples, we are investing our lives in the two things that count, the word of God and people.”What exactly is a true disciple of Christ? The answer is: A true disciple has “a lifestyle alongside his belief.”
Continuing our study of the supernatural power of God, we said that in order for God’s power to become apparent, “all self-confidence and self-dependence must be exposed, repented of and put at the Cross.” If we are clean and open vessels, then God can pour His power through us in His plan of redemption. What, then, is the difference between a believer who lives for himself, follows his own will and depends upon his own strength and a Christian who has laid everything down at the Cross, lives only for Christ and depends only upon His power?
How can we tell them apart? What exactly is a true disciple of Christ? The answer is: A true disciple has “a lifestyle alongside his belief.”
A true disciple of Christ is one who not only has “partaken in Christ,” meaning he has received God’s Spirit, but one who has also “partaken of Christ,” meaning he is living Christ’s Life, His Love, and His power. In other words, he is not only following Christ around and listening to His sermons, he is also obeying and doing what he hears. Just because we are followers of Christ does not necessarily mean we are “true disciples.” Remember Judas? He was a follower of Christ, but not a true disciple (John 12:4). Being a true disciple indicates that a life action is accompanying our belief. A true disciple not only proclaims the message of Christ with his words, he also shows forth Christ’s Life in his actions (Galatians 5:25).
A true disciple is one who does the will of God. He is one who denies himself, picks up his cross, and follows Christ (Mark 8:34). He is one who has forsaken all in order to follow Him (Luke 14:33).
Everything that Paul taught in his epistles, he actually lived out daily. He daily walked by faith and not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7). He preached the gospel and taught all the counsel of God, “not in the letter that kills” but in the power of the “Spirit who gives life” (Romans 1:16; 2 Corinthians 3:6). He suffered every sort of persecution there is for his Lord’s sake (2 Corinthians 11:23–27; Romans 8:17–18). Everything he did, he did so that he might share Christ’s glory. His life was, in every sense, a pattern for all to follow. Paul also told us that if we need to boast, we are to do so only in our infirmities. That way the Lord will be glorified, not us.
Paul saw weakness not as a liability, but rather as a way of being totally surrendered to the Lord. “I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong” (2 Corinthians 12:10).
A true disciple of Christ, therefore, is one who has done a complete reordering of his life. He constantly relinquishes his self-life to the Lord and in exchange, Christ gives him His. He is one who not only spends time in the Word, but he also lives what he preaches. Power seems to be the mark of a true disciple of Christ (2 Corinthians 12:9). Weakness (or yielding to Him) is the prerequisite for this kind of divine power.
A real disciple is always concerned with the personal application of truth first. Then he becomes willing to share what he has learned. “For I will not dare to speak of any of those things which Christ hath not wrought by me [first], to make the Gentiles obedient, by word and deed” (Romans 15:18). God’s truth must first be personalized in a disciple’s life, before it can be shared.
It’s one thing to know God’s principles in your head, but it’s something totally different to walk out those principles in your everyday life.
Christ told us that our mission is to go out and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and teaching them to observe all that the Lord has told us in His Word (Matthew 28:18–20). Not just talking to them about the gospel, but actually showing them how to live it.
C. A Love for the Word of God
They Hear It
As John the Baptist and his disciples were standing by the Jordan River, Jesus walked by. Once again John states, “Behold, the Lamb of God.” [iii] This was a biblical message. John’s disciples understood this to be a declaration from God Himself. They recognized John the Baptist was a prophet sent from God and that prophets spoke the Word of God. They had followed John for some time and they listened intently to what John had to say. When they heard John speak they knew his words were of God.
God’s Word is exactly what Christians need for direction in their lives. “The Bible, not the church, is supreme in all matters of faith and conduct. Church councils, committees and organizations and their decisions do not supersede the Word of God. God’s Word is final.”
B. They Heed It
It was not enough for the disciples to just hear what John said. They took what they heard to heart. True disciples will not only hear the Word of God, it will move them to action. James states, “But be ye doers of the word and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.” I once heard a man say it is not how much we get into God’s Word that matters but how much God’s Word gets into us. Reading, studying and applying God’s Word in our lives is essential.
That’s why the scripture say;
Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. 32 And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. John8; 31-32”
A good or a true disciple of Jesus Christ, must suffer with him and this shows that if you suffer with Jesus Christ you share in his glory. But the believers today or call them Christian Born Agains think that Jesus Christ suffered all that we may not suffer and in fact you find them grumbling when bad situations arise, they often get offended because of Jesus having accepted him and they are suffering, But we shall look at what Good and True Disciples should be in Suffering with Christ. Jesus Christ suffered on our behalf for remission of our sins and indeed he was setting us as an example that those who suffer in Christ have their reward and He suffered so that we may be a live and also we ought to suffer with him in collecting and gathering to his Kingdom. Now there is no perfection in salvation if there is no suffering in Christ Jesus, so whenever we suffer in Christ we are perfected well In his salvation therefore, I am not talking about the suffering you suffered before accepting Jesus Christ, Not really because that suffering everyone goes through for their perfection in their lives. Meanwhile suffering in Christ Jesus Brings perfection in our lives. A True disciple of Jesus Christ must suffer with him for the sake of God’s Kingdom to be built. Let’s look at what the scriptures say about Suffering in Christ;
19. For it is commendable if someone bears up under the pain of unjust suffering because they are conscious of God. 20 But how is it to your credit if you receive a beating for doing wrong and endure it? But if you suffer for doing good and you endure it, this is commendable before God. 21To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example that you should follow in his steps.
22“He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth.” 23 When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly. 24“He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed. 1 Peter2; 19-25” As you can see from the above a true disciple must follow the footsteps of his Master, we too must suffer on behalf of others for our deliverances and their deliverances. For we should be rejoicing when passing hard times or suffer is Christ Jesus for the sake of his people and work as well as the kingdom. Let’s look at more of the scripture about suffering taking examples;
13Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good? 14But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. “Do not fear their threats; do not be frightened.”c 15But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, 16keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander. 17For it is better, if it is God’s will, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil. 18For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive in the Spirit. 19After being made alive he went and made proclamation to the imprisoned spirits— 20to those who were disobedient long ago when God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built. In it only a few people, eight in all, were saved through water, 21and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also—not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a clear conscience toward God.e It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22who has gone into heaven and is at God’s right hand—with angels, authorities and powers in submission to him. 1 Peter3; 13-22.
The suffering that is accepted is that is in Christ Jesus for doing the will of God or for the sake of the Kingdom. Therefore Brethren I argue when suffering be rejoicing because by your suffering in Christ Jesus shall bring you Glory and pure reflection of Jesus Christ in you. But when you fear to suffer in Christ then you are not yet perfected in Christ Jesus salvation that he has brought us into through his suffering.
In conclusion don’t focus on being Church members because they are not doing God’s will but rather be a true Disciple of Jesus Christ by Doing God’s will, keeping repentance, holiness, truth and righteousness. For such a disciple has a reward in heaven and for a church member it will be hard for you to enter the Kingdom of God since you focused on being a church member, by the way you coming to church every Sunday and being known by everybody in the church doesnt mean you can go to heaven but rather those who are only doing God’s will in heaven.MATHEW7;19-21
Time is now take heed and learn all the things you have heard, learnt lest you driftaway for destruction. Your pastors will not take you to heaven, not even your mother or father nor your husband nor your church nor your brother
But only those who are doing God’s will through Christ Jesus in the power or with guidance of the Holy Spirit are the only to enter the kingdom of God because they are called sons of God. Romans8;14.
I remain Asher Namanya The Bondservant of God the Father and the Lords Jesus Christ. GOD be with you all as you strive to become Disciples of Jesus Christ not jûst church members.