We are continuing with our teaching series on discipleship, on what it means to follow Jesus together. In the next few months, we are focusing on what is involved in being a follower of Jesus. We have said that the first thing that discipleship involves is ‘being with Jesus’. In these notes, we consider what friendship with Jesus involves.
“…he appointed twelve that they might be with him…”(Mark 3:14)
It helps if you can listen to the Sunday message beforehand. If you missed it, there is always a recording online and we are going to try to make sure there is a blog post available summarising, or based on, the message. So that is also a way to catch up.
The topic for these notes is about being with Jesus as a friend, and you can hear the message by Dan Lush and/or read the post here.
Dan points out that the company we keep, the friends we make, can affect the person we become. So friendship with Jesus is crucial to becoming like him. He also draws attention to the strange idea that being friends of Jesus involves keeping his commands, but explains how that makes sense when we realise how life-giving and liberating the commands of Jesus are. Finally, we can rejoice in how faithful Jesus is as a friend, nothing separating us from his love even when we let him down.
We are going to be spending months and even years seeking to work out – in understanding and practice – what all this means, so don’t think you have to cover everything all at once. If it helps, here are some questions to guide your discussion (but don’t be limited by them):
- What do you think is involved in being a friend of Jesus? What does it look like for you?
- How did you first respond to the words of Jesus in John 15:14 when he says that friendship with him is shown by following his commands? How does Dan’s explanation help us?
- Jesus called Judas, who betrayed him, ‘My friend’. What does that tell us about Jesus and what is your response?
For Next Time:
In the next two messages and Hub Notes, we will look at what it means to be disciple-making disciples and at how the call to follow Jesus addresses our deepest desires.