John T. Willis

Sunday, September 25, 2016

The Biblical Teaching of Disciples--3

After Jesus healed several people, Matthew 9:35-37 says:
     "Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and proclaiming the good news of the kingdom, and curing every disease and every sickness. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then HE SAID TO HIS DISCIPLES, 'The harvest is plenteous, but the laborers are few; therefore ask the Lord of harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.'"

1. This paragraph indicates that Jesus' disciples were with him when he taught and cured sick people. They were there with him when the crowds grew and Jesus has compassion for them because they were like sheep without a shepherd.
     a. One must conclude that a disciple is learning from Jesus' teaching, and is learning from Jesus' curing sick people, and is learning from Jesus' compassion for people who have no shepherd. Jesus' examples of teaching, healing, and having compassion people show disciples how to follow Jesus.
     b. Jesus overtly told his disciples that the harvest is plenteous, and that Jesus wanted laborers to harvest the crops. It is clear that the harvest is people who are inclined to turn from the world to God through Jesus Christ. Hence, the role of disciples is to go into the fields [the world] and harvest the crops [penitent people] by repenting and turning to God.

The very next verse says in Matthew 10:1: "Then Jesus summoned HIS TWELVE DISCIPLES and gave them authority over unclean spirit, to cast them out, and to cure every disease and every sickness." The very next line in Matthew 10:2 says: "These are the names of the TWELVE APOSTLES."
1. The twelve disciples are the twelve apostles. An apostle is a person who is SENT to carry out God's mission. Hebrews 3:1 calls Jesus "the APOSTLE and high priest of our confession." 
     a. Here a disciple is one who is sent to carry out God's mission.
     b. Jesus gives his disciples authority to cast out demons and cure every disease. This is clearly not a dictatorial type of authority, but a God-given power to subdue wicked forces and diseases. Jesus' disciples receive God's power through Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit to carry out God's mission.

Share YOUR experiences and thoughts and reversals and dreams and beliefs with others. Let me hear from YOU.

John Willis


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