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Discipleship February 20, 2007

Posted by amybeth in Deep.

I went to a conference this past weekend on ‘walking as Jesus walked’. Ray Vanderlaan, the speaker, spoke about the Jewish concept of discipleship (among many other things). He taught that to a Jewish person, being a disciple is all about becoming like their rabbi in every way, that being a disciple consumes their every waking thought and takes priority over everything else.

I was thinking about how part of being a Christian is being a disciple of Jesus, wanting to be like him. And then I stopped myself. That is a scary thing I just said. I think that we’ve relegated being like Jesus to just one of a whole list of things that are involved in being Christians rather than being the entire reason for our existence. How did that happen?  If we were truly his disciples than getting to know him would be the reason we got up every morning, the guage by which we measured our success, the rubric by which we determined our actions. And yet I think for us, being a Christian sometimes becomes more about getting to the right meetings, putting in enough volunteer hours, doing good deeds (because the are good, not necessarily with a concious thought to whether Jesus would have done them), reading our Bible, listening to Christian music and so on. Its about being part of the Western Christian culture not about being like the strangely out of place, passionate, uncompromising, self-sacrificing, full of life, loving, Scripture-filled, generous, challenging rabbi named Jesus Christ.

What do you think? Maybe its just me who has elevated being Christian-like over being Christ-like. I’d love to hear how you actively pursue being like your rabbi?



1. Hamameliss - March 1, 2007

Hmm, I think that is a very common theme throughout many churches today. Maybe perhaps why I’ve begun to wonder if we have gotten our church structure wrong (if you are interested in exploring this idea, check out books by Frank Viola, but be ye warned that he has been burned a few times by the traditional churches and sometimes that comes out in his writing). But, a book that really began to help me make sense of the above (and that I pretty much read all week this week ) is “Sacred Romance” by John Eldredge…check it out

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