1. Jesus spoke these words near the end of His ministry. 2. In this verse He mentioned the subject we are concentrating on today: "following Him." 3. Notice how the Lord: a. connected serving Him with following Him b. indicated that those who serve and follow Him will be where He is c. stated that those who serve and follow Him will be honored by the Father. 4. We conclude from this 1 verse that following Christ is a matter of utmost importance. 5. In our lesson we are searching the Lord's Word with the intention of having Him teach us what we need to know about following Him. 6. Let us begin by pointing out that . . . Discussion:
I. THE LORD WANTS PEOPLE TO FOLLOW HIM
A. We read about the occasions when He called several of His apostles, including: 1. Peter and Andrew (Mark 1:16-18) 2. James and John (Mark 1:19-20) 3. Levi [Matthew] (Mark 2:14). B. In addition to the apostles, Jesus called others to follow Him (Mark 8:34). C. These verses are sufficient to show that the Lord wants people to follow Him. II. EACH PERSON MUST DECIDE WHETHER HE WILL FOLLOW CHRIST
A. The Lord did not force anyone to follow Him during His ministry, and He does not force anyone to follow Him today. B. He invites everyone to come to Him (Matthew 11:28), but each person is responsible for deciding whether he will become a follower of Christ. C. We must understand that our eternal destiny is at stake (Matthew 10:38). III. THERE IS A PRICE TO PAY TO FOLLOW THE LORD
A. We have read that each person must "take up his cross." B. This is to be done "daily" in addition to "denying self" (Luke 9:23). C. Jesus showed how a price must be paid to follow Him as He dealt with 3 men in Luke 9:57-62. D. The rich young ruler would not pay the price (Luke 18:22-23). E. While there is a price to pay to follow the Lord, . . . IV. BLESSINGS ARE AVAILABLE TO THOSE WHO FOLLOW CHRIST
A. The Lord will bless those who sacrifice to follow Him (Luke 18:28-30). B. Jesus revealed a very special blessing in John 8:12. V. A NUMBER OF RESPONSIBILITIES ARE INVOLVED IN FOLLOWING CHRIST
A. Romans 14:19 B. Ephesians 5:1-2 C. 1 Thessalonians 5:15 D. 1 Timothy 6:11 E. Hebrews 12:14 F. 1 Peter 2:21-23 G. 3 John 11 Conclusion:
1. We have searched the Lord's Word to learn what He wants us to know about following Him. 2. Does the Lord recognize you as His follower?