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By Derek Gentle
We have a relationship with:
1. Those with Whom We Spend Time
"Then He appointed
twelve, that they might be with Him and that He might send them out to
preach" Mark 3:14
twelve for the very purpose of giving them the opportunity of spendinging
time together with Him.
2. Those with Whom We Eat
"Wherever he goes
in, say to the master of the house, `The Teacher says, "Where is the guest
room in which I may eat the Passover with My disciples?"' Mark 14:14
"Jesus said to them,
'Come and eat breakfast.' Yet none of the disciples dared ask Him, "Who
are You?" ----knowing that it was the Lord." John 21:12
We don't eat
with just anyone. We are usually pretty selective about who eat with.
Holiday meals are a good example. Those meals are reserved for those
with whom we have the closest relationships.
3. Those with
Whom We Share Confidential Information
"And the disciples
came and said to Him, "Why do You speak to them in parables?" He answered
and said to them, "Because it has been given to you to know the mysteries
of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given.
"But without a parable
He did not speak to them. And when they were alone, He explained all things
to His disciples." Mark 4:34
"Simon Peter answered
and said, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. Jesus answered
and said to him, "Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood
has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven.. . Then He
commanded His disciples that they should tell no one that He was Jesus
Say you interview
for a new job. You are not going to tell your boss. But you
will, perhaps, tell one trusted friend. In the same way, Jesus tells
certain things only to those who are most intimate with Him.
4. Those We Want with Us in Times of Trouble
"Then He said to
them, "My soul is exceedingly sorrowful, even to death. Stay here and watch
with Me." Matthew 26:38
is a faimily crisis oft-spoken words are, "Has so and so been called yet?"
"Does Ralph know?" Family and friends gather at one home to
be together. Jesus had these same feelings as He anticipated His
passion. He wanted His disciples with Him.
5. Those We Tell Our Big News First
"And go quickly and
tell His disciples that He is risen from the dead, and indeed He is going
before you into Galilee; there you will see Him. Behold, I have told you.
. . Then Jesus said to them, 'Do not be afraid. Go and tell My brethren
to go to Galilee, and there they will see Me." Matthew
Who do you run to with big news? You get the promotion, the first
grandchild is born... who do you tell? When Jesus rose from the dead,
the first people He wanted to know were His disciples.
6. Those We Claim Before Others
"And He stretched
out His hand toward His disciples and said, "Here are My mother and My
brothers!" Matthew 12:49
When we have
a distant relative and he or she has done well, they may be a third cousin
twice removed, but we claim them. If they are in prison, they are,
of course, a very distant relative. When Jesus' family had decided
that perhaps He had gone off the deep end, He was told that his mother
and brothers were there to take Him home. He replied that those who
have a walk with Him are the ones closest to Him, that they are His "family".
Jesus claims those people.
7. Those Whose Influence Rubs Off on Us
"Now when they saw
the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated
and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been
with Jesus." Acts 4:13
Here is what
this message all boils down to. Discipleship is first and foremost
about having a relationship with Jesus Christ. This relationship
is transformational. Being around Jesus changes us. Norman Douty writes:
We see here
in Acts that when a bunch of uneducated fishermen were brought up before
the authorities that they were able to handle themselves and stand for
Christ impressively. Even their persecutors could tell that it was
the time they had spent with Jesus which had made the difference.
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