What It Means to Follow Jesus: How to Become a Christian

What is the purest love you have ever seen or experienced? Real love is demonstrated by actions such as serving, giving, and helping rather than merely speaking words of love. Real love does not expect to receive anything in return.

It is definitely hard to find in this world. Right?

Jesus, the Son of God whom you can read about in the Holy Bible, offers you real love that never ends. Along with God the Father, He created you. He truly loves you with an everlasting love and wants to give you incredible gifts – such as love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23 NIV) and after your time on earth is completed, He offers you the incredible opportunity to live forever with Him (Matthew 19:28-30). Yes, He offers eternal life.

You may be wondering if there are conditions. Yes, we are required to believe in Jesus (John 11:25-26) and follow Him (Matthew 10:37-39). That means we are to believe what the Holy Bible says — that He is the Son of God who was promised in the Old Testament — and follow His way rather than the enemy’s way.

Our vicious enemy Satan rebelled against Jesus. His purpose is to “steal, kill and destroy” you and me (John 10:7-10). He entices us to follow him so we will rebel against Jesus in three ways, which the Bible refers to as “the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life” (1 John 2:16).

Here’s an example of each. He tempts us to fulfill the desires of our flesh in ways that will harm us and others (lust of the flesh). He tries to get us to desire things so badly that we will do anything to get them, including evil acts (lust of the eyes). He wants us to be so focused on making money that we forget that He is the true source of our provision when we follow Him (pride of life).

When Jesus came to earth in the form of a man, which scholars say was between 6 BC and 4 BC, He was “tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin.” (Hebrews 4:15 NIV) He was obedient in every way, loving in every way.

Because He created us, He knows that it is impossible for us to be perfect. He knows that we will do wrong. So instead of making us pay for our wrongdoing, He paid for it

With

His

Life.

Evil people did not believe that Jesus is the Son of God even though He tried to show them. He did miracles (Mark 6:2). He healed people who had been sick for many years (Matthew 9:21-22). He fed crowds of thousands with a small amount of food (Mark 6:35-44). But they still did not believe.

These people could not stand Jesus so they sought to kill Him.

Jesus could have stopped them, but He didn’t. He laid down His life willingly (John 10:17-18). He “resolutely set out for Jerusalem” (Luke 9:51) where He knew what would happen to Him. He even told His followers what would happen.

These evil people tortured Him, insulted Him, spat on Him and nailed Him to a cross to die (Matthew 27:27-56). He went through it all so we would not have to receive the punishment we deserve for our own wrongdoing, called “sin.” He also promised to send His Holy Spirit to live inside us to help us (John 14:15-27).

His death was the ultimate expression of His love for you and me because He stepped in to pay for our sins so we would not have to live with our enemy Satan forever, as our sins deserve.

But   He   did   not   stay   in   the   grave!

On the third day after His burial, He rose up out of the grave (Matthew 28:1-10).

Many people saw Him after He arose (John 21:1-14) and many saw Him ascend into heaven (Luke 24:50-53).

How do we become His follower/learner (disciple)?

The first step is to believe that He is who He said He is — the Son of God (John 10:36-38 and John 6:35-40)

We must choose to repent (turn) from the wrongs that we do. In order to do this, we need to know examples of sins (wrongdoings against God). Here are some examples of things that Jesus has commanded us not to do. (These are listed in the order in which they appear in the Bible.)

  • 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 NIV “Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.”
  • Galatians 5:19-21a NIV “The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like.”
  • I Timothy 1:9-11 NIV “We also know that the law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, for the sexually immoral, for those practicing homosexuality, for slave traders and liars and perjurers—and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine that conforms to the gospel concerning the glory of the blessed God, which he entrusted to me.”
  • 2 Timothy 3:1-5 NIV “But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God—having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.”
  • Revelation 21:8 NIV “But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars—they will be consigned to the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.”

We then are to obey Jesus’ command to be immersed in water (called baptism) by the authority of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:18-20) “for the forgiveness of sins” and to “receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:38-39 NIV).

Romans 3:23 tells us “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (NIV). We thank God that He does not turn His back on us when we sin even after we have become a Christian IF we turn from our sins and ask for His forgiveness (1 John 1:5-10).

Our commitment leads us to continue learning about Him and obeying His teachings, using the gifts He gives us for His glory (rather than for our glory) and dedicating our lives to Him, which is demonstrated by obeying the two greatest commands, loving the Lord our God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength and loving your neighbor as yourself (Mark 12:28-31).

He tells us He will be with Christians always, to the very end of the age (Matthew 28:20).

He wants us to build relationships with other believers so we can worship Him together, encourage and be encouraged, serve and be served and use all the other gifts He so abundantly gives us to serve Him by serving others. We do this by becoming a part of a church family. He helps us share His pure love with those who don’t know Him and to lead them to follow Him.

By devoting our lives to Him and obeying His teachings, we will live a life of love. We will have a higher purpose than any other purpose on earth.

And He has promised that His followers will live FOREVER with him. So after this life is over, we know that there is a better life waiting for us. Our time on earth is a preparation time. He tells us He will reward us according to our deeds.

Jesus offers you a pure, everlasting love.

Will you accept His most generous offer?

If you wish to learn more about this lesson or to become a Christian, we will seek to put you in contact with someone who can help you if you email us your name, city, state and country at NLBIministry@gmail.com.

Here is a link to a more in-depth Bible study about following Jesus. https://jesusfreedom.wordpress.com/who-is-jesus/

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