Discipleship: Responding to Jesus 1

The life of a disciple.

It’s not a 12-step program. It’s not a curriculum or a workbook. You don’t become a disciple from reading a book or listening to a podcast. Discipleship is not a weekend seminar or missions trip. Discipleship is not going to church.

Discipleship is life. The world of a Jesus-disciple is 24-7-365.

Luke’s gospel will be our catalyst for our disciple conversations, in particular, the end of chapter 9 thru chapter 19. Ten whole chapters, out of 24 total, Luke devotes to a 100-mile journey from Galilee to Jerusalem in which Jesus teaches his disciples all along the way with life lessons.

This week we look at 9:51-56, and we see our first lesson of being a Jesus-disciple:

Disciples don’t react to people; they respond to Jesus.

Here we have this group on the road. On the way to Jerusalem, they make plans to stop in a Samaritan village. Whenever we see the word “Samaritan” in the New Testament we’re being setup to see a massive cultural and racial difference. If Jesus and his followers, who are Jews, are Sooners, then the Samaritans are Cowboys. If Jesus and his disciples are from white suburbia, then a Samaritan village is the black ghetto. There’s lots of history here, but the bottom line is, these two groups have hated each other for centuries.

So we shouldn’t be surprised when the village doesn’t put on a parade and usher them into a five-star hotel. Nor should we be surprised when James and John want to get even. (If you wonder where they get the idea to start throwing fire around, consider 2 Kings 1:9-12 and the idea that the disciples probably understood their relationship to Jesus like Elijah and Elisha.)

What should surprise us is what Jesus does with this situation. He doesn’t rebuke the filthy, dirty, no-good Samaritans. He rebukes his own disciples. What does that mean?

Disciples don’t react to people; they respond to Jesus.

We’ll unpack this some more tomorrow.



About peterjwhite

I am a pastor to college students in Tulsa, OK.
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