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WILL I FOLLOW

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CHOICES

WILL I FOLLOW?
Every day we make choices. we choose to get up or stay in bed. We choose to go to work or not. we choose what to eat. we choose what to where. we choose where to go and what to do. Our lives are filled with all sorts of choices.
But the most important decision that we MUST make every single day is...

WILL WE FOLLOW JESUS?

Will we deny our selves, take up the cross and follow Jesus everyday, every moment, in every decision that we make each day.
The Gospel of Mark challenges us to be true followers of Christ. If we are honest with ourselves as we go through the Gospel of Mark we will see what it really means to be a disciple (follower) of Jesus.
We will see what true disciples do and the extent to which they follow Jesus. We will even see the mistakes that a disciple sometimes make. We will understand what Jesus calls us to and what he demands and what is in store for His disciples.
When you study the book of Mark it forces us to make a choice. As come face to face with Jesus, His teachings, His power, His compassion, His love, we will have to make a decision.
Yes We have a choice that we must make today and everyday. WILL I FOLLOW JESUS?

WHAT DOES FOLLOWING JESUS LOOK LIKE

In Mark 1:16ff we find four of the 12 apostles who will have to make a choice. The choice to follow Jesus or not to follow Jesus. With that choice comes all sorts of decisions that must be made. By examining their response to the Lord maybe we can resolve in our own hearts to be better followers of Christ.
It doesn’t take long in the Gospel of Mark for us to find Jesus calling the first two disciples Simon and Andrew who were fisherman, in fact they were in the middle of that task when Jesus calls them.

FOLLOWERS OF JESUS DENY THEMSELVES

What does a fisherman do? from the time they get up to the time they go to bed they fish. That it is what Simon and his brother are.
But Jesus says he is going to make them fishers of men.
What do fishers of men do, they fish all day. If you are a fisher of men you are thinking about souls and how the message of God will catch men.
I want you to think for a moment on what Jesus is asking them to do. What does it really mean to a follower of Christ.
Mark 8:34 NASB95
And He summoned the crowd with His disciples, and said to them, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me.
what are they going to have to do to follow Jesus. They are going to have to stop being fisherman and become fishers of men. They are going to have to change occupations, change priorities, change their focus, change their minds, their hearts…everything had to change…what if their heart wasn’t in it? We have an example of the at in Judas. They had to change completely.
what do we stop being when we become Christians today?
What do we give up to become what God wants us to be? Did anything really change for us when we became a Christian?
We don’t have to completely change our jobs but we might. But one thing for certain is that we have to look at our life differently. The way we look at the world has to change, the way we look at ourselves has got to change. we cannot live for self anymore. there has to be a change in our priorities.
we have to look at our occupations differently. we have to look at our time differently.
we have to like at our money differently. we have to look at our lives differently.

FOLLOWERS OF JESUS BECOME FISHERS OF MEN

Mark 8:34 Deny ourselves, take up our cross, and follow (fishers of men first). Jesus was a fisher of men, His closest companions were fishers of men. Acts and the rest of scripture are filled full of pages of those who were fishers of men and the Gospel spread to the remotest parts of the earth. What abut us?
But Daryl I’m not a fisherman? I don’t want to be a fisher of men. Its uncomfortable, it’s hard, it’s not my thing. A follower of Jesus denies Himself. It’s not about you and what you want. It’s about Jesus and what he wants.
Brothers and sisters How closely have you been following Jesus. If you attach yourself to Jesus and follow Him around everyday then you will become a fisher of men
Hasn’t Jesus called us to be fishers of men?
Matthew 28:18–20 NASB95
And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
Our priorities need to be on how we can reach the lost with the Gospel. How can I influence others for Christs as a Christian in my job, etc.
the Gospel of Mark is filled with a lot of UNLIKELY FISHERMAN one of those we find and the end of this chapter
Jesus heals a leper at the end of chapter 1. He tells him to tell no-one...
Mark 1:45 NASB95
But he went out and began to proclaim it freely and to spread the news around, to such an extent that Jesus could no longer publicly enter a city, but stayed out in unpopulated areas; and they were coming to Him from everywhere.
The healed leper was so overwhelmed at what jesus had done for him that he proclaims Jesus all around to the point Jesus is overwhelmed with the crowds.
When Jesus comes into our lives and he gets rid of our sin leprosy. We Jesus has compassion on us and reaches out and touches us and cleanses us is our response the same as the leper. He spreads the word of jesus to the point that he couldn’t go in to the city…in chapter 2 we have the crowds have so filled the house and streets to hear Jesus that some friends have to lower the paralytic through the roof to get him to Jesus.
We can be like the cleansed leper. What did the leper really know about Jesus. He was healed by Jesus that's really it. But he filled the streets with the name of Jesus.

FOLLOWERS OF JESUS FOLLOW

The disciples had a choice & we have a choice? Will we follow Christ or will we go our own way? Will we put our foot down and say I am not going to do that, I don’t want to do that, please don’t make me do that or will we deny ourselves take up our cross and follow jesus.
Notice what the text says concerning Simon and Andrews choice.
v. 18 immediately they left their nets and followed.
What proof did they have, what could Jesus have done that caused to drop everything and follow. We do know from one of the other Gospels they had a great catch but what else. Unlike Simon and Andrew we have all the proof written in the pages of the Scriptures for us read study, and examine daily and yet...
We drag our feet, we come kicking and screaming, we turn back, and some of us have never truly decided to follow Jesus. We continue to go our own way and have no intention at all to deny ourselves.
We want to follow based on our terms, we want to follow at a distance, we want to follow just as long as I don’t have to sacrifice or give up anything.
to follow Jesus they had to deny what they were and become something else? Are we any different?
we we have deny ourselves. we have deny what we once lived for.

FOLLOWERS OF JESUS TAKE UP THEIR CROSS

We have to take our cross. We must deny ourselves and become something completely different.
Taking up our cross means taking up and instrument of death. The cross symbolizes our death to self. What do we do with our old self? WE KILL IT!
That’s often times the problem with us and why sin rears its ugly head, and why our love and commitment, and service waivers to our Lord is because we have not killed the old self.
Galatians 2:20 NASB95
“I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.
Everyday that is a challenge we must face. We will see as we walk thru the book of Mark that was a difficult task and one that Jesus helped prepare the disciples for and one in which he will help us with.
The disciples are an example of denying selves and follow jesus will we follow in their footsteps.
A FOLLOWER OF JESUS
WILL WE DENY OURSELVES
WILL WE BECOME FISHERS OF MEN
WILL WE TAKE UP OUR CROSS
WILL WE FOLLOW JESUS WHEREVER HE LEADS US
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