• To understand what it means to be a follower of Jesus


ACTS 2:36

  • This is the heart of the first gospel sermon.
  • Jesus is Lord (King or Master).

Q. What do you think it means to call someone Lord?

  • Jesus is the Christ (Savior).

Q. What do you think it means to call someone Christ (Savior)?


MARK 1:14-18

  • From the beginning, Jesus’ message was a call to follow him and be a fisher of men. Over the next 2-3 years, his disciples would learn what this meant.
  • The earliest disciples left everything behind to follow Jesus!

Note: In this study, we will look at what following Jesus and being his disciple means.


LUKE 9:23-26

  • “If anyone”—Jesus’ call of discipleship is the same for all of us.
  • “He must deny himself and take up his cross daily”—following Jesus requires surrender
    and an absolute denial of self.
  • “Whoever loses his life”—only when we surrender our lives and deny ourselves will our
    lives be saved—a great paradox. If we try to hold onto our lives, we ultimately lose them!

Q. How do you think these people would understand Jesus’ call to take up their crosses daily? Is this a decision that you have made in your life?


LUKE 11:1-4

  • The disciples looked to Jesus for instruction in prayer.
  • This is a model of how we need to look to Jesus for instruction in every area.
  •  It is obvious that prayer should be a vital (daily) part of every disciple’s life. What is your
    prayer life like?


LUKE 14:25-33

  • “Disciple”—following Jesus is to be his “disciple.” Jesus didn’t use the word “Christian.” Disciple means “follower, learner or apprentice.”

Q. What do you make of Jesus’ teaching here to “hate” our families? What does this mean?

  • Jesus before family—a disciple’s relationship with Christ must come before all other relationships, even family relationships. Jesus also teaches that we should love our families and care for them, but he comes first!
  • “Anything and everything”—following Jesus is an all-consuming commitment and takes everything we’ve got. Only total surrender is sufficient in the eyes of God.
  • “Counting the cost”—Jesus gives two examples to illustrate the need to count the cost of such a serious commitment. The call of discipleship is not one to be taken lightly!


MATTHEW 28:18-20

  • “Go and make disciples”—Jesus gave his followers a mission in life— making disciples of all nations. Just like when he initially called them (Mark 1:14-18), Jesus makes it clear that a disciple’s mission is to teach others about him!

Q. Have you ever embraced the call of Jesus to make disciples?

  • “Teach them to obey everything”—Jesus spoke with all authority in heaven and on earth, and every one of his teachings is important. Being a disciple is to pay close attention to and strive to obey all the teachings of Jesus.
  • “I’ll be with you always”—disciples of Jesus are never alone!


MATTHEW 22:34-40

Q. What does God ultimately care about most?

  • When asked about what matters most in all the Law, Jesus spoke of love—love for God and love for our neighbors. Love is why disciples do what they do!
  • More than anything else, God wants a relationship with you. He loves you and he wants you to love him. Being a disciple is first and foremost about loving God with all of your heart, soul, and mind. This is our purpose as a Christian.
  • Self-denial and putting Jesus first is an outpouring of that relationship.
  • Jesus loved beyond measure and he calls us to love those around us as well. Disciples
    of Jesus compassionately love and serve those around them, both in meeting needs and in sharing the gospel of Jesus.

Q. Has this kind of love characterized your relationship with God and how you treat and view those around you?

Closing Questions

  • Do you feel God calling you to a life of discipleship? How do you feel about that call?
  • Have you ever made the decision to be a disciple of Jesus Christ?
  • Are you ready to follow Jesus as his disciple?

Additional Scriptures