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Date: 30 May, 2019
Text: Mark 8:27-38
Title: Come After Me
27 And Jesus went out, and his disciples, into the towns of Caesarea Philippi:
exp. There are two Caesarea's in the Bible.
1.) Caesarea on the Sea - Cornelius lived there - Paul was tried and imprisoned there before being sent to Rome.
2.) Caesarea Philippi - North of the Sea of Galilee, below Mount Hermon, water flowing out of a Cave and Rock outcropping. We saw a shepherd herding goats above this rock and saw conies peeking out of the rocks. (woodchuck)
exp. Jesus has just finished praying BY HIMSELF though he was with the disciple
Luk 9:18 And it came to pass, as he was alone praying, his disciples were with him: and he asked them, saying, Whom say the people that I am?
...and by the way he asked his disciples, saying unto them, Whom do men say that I am?
28 And they answered, John the Baptist: but some say, Elias; and others, One of the prophets.
29 And he saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? And Peter answereth and saith unto him, Thou art the Christ.
30 And he charged them that they should tell no man of him.
exp. HE IS THE MESSIAH - THE SON OF GOD! To emphasize the glory of the reality of WHO HE WAS the transfiguration occurs immediately following this event.
Mar 9:7 And there was a cloud that overshadowed them: and a voice came out of the cloud, saying, This is my beloved Son: hear him.
exp. IMAGINE - Jesus physically here today - GOD IN FLESH - THE ONLY BEGOTTEN SON OF GOD. OUR LORD AND MASTER. OUR CREATOR, LAW GIVER AND RIGHTEOUS JUDGE.
question: Would the hair on the back of your neck stand up a little bit? You would quake in fear like these tough fishermen at the transfiguration! Would you want to follow Him? You are allowed to do so and are invited to do so.
34 And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me,...
exp. You can follow Him - praise His name! But, you may not want to follow him because of where he bids you come!
ill. Peter stepped onto the raging sea of Galilee because Jesus bid him come.
Matthew 14:28 And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water. 29 And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus.
exp. He had to have Jesus rescue him as he realized what Jesus had bid him do. But, he stepped out BECAUSE JESUS SAID TO COME.
I want to encourage you today to - COME AFTER JESUS TO WHERE HE HAS SAID TO COME. Are you coming? He has called you? You can follow him "whosoever will come after me" - but you must chose to go where He has called you to go.
I. Come after me to suffering.
ill. If I were to ask you who your favourite NT character is (other than Jesus) many would probably say the Apostle Paul.
- Great missionary - 3 remarkable missionary journeys - church planting evangelist.
- bold preacher - standing up to mobs and proclaiming Christ.
- one of the most popular evangelists of his day "I am of Paul, I'm of Apollos...."
- preaching before Kings
- writing the letters to the churches and preacher boys (epistles) that make up the majority of our NT books.
exp. We may even think - I would love to be like Paul. To be like Paul we would have to come after Jesus to suffering.
ill. Paul's call - Acts 9:16 For I will shew him how great things he must suffer for my name's sake.
app. It is impossible for those who follow Jesus to do so without suffering.
A. Follow Jesus to much suffering.
31 And he began to teach them, the Son of man must suffer many things,
exp. Our flesh doesn't like to suffer.
ill. Dentists are very nice people. The nurses with needles at the GP are very nice people - but for some reason - we don't get excited to go to their places of business because our flesh has to suffer. Some children (and adults) try to turn back rather than go to the place of suffering.
note: When someone get's saved - THEY ARE EXCITED ABOUT THEIR SALVATION. But, some when they realize that their is suffering involved in following Jesus - they turn back.
ill. Parable of the sower - Matthew 13:20 But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it;
21 Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended.
app. That doesn't mean they aren't in church. (they may or may not be) But, it does mean that they let persecution stop them from doing what God called them to do. (Stopped witnessing/ stopped following Jesus on the path of holy living/ stopped standing up for Jesus, refuse to be baptized, refuse to join a church....) PRAISE GOD JESUS SUFFERED MUCH FOR US. Those who would follow Him will suffer much!
B. Follow Jesus to many rejections.
and be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes,
question: Do you like rejection?
ill. I've said before - when handing out flyers - my least liked rejection is from an older woman who knows I'm offering her truth about God and sticks her nose up in the air and acts as if I just offered her something filthy.
exp. Rejection is tough.
ill. Why don't you do door to door? Why don't you give out Gospel flyers? Why don't you tell more people about Jesus - isn't it because you fear rejection?
Ill. Our world says Christianity should be acceptable to the world. Interesting - Jesus was hated so much he was crucified but the world has convinced the church that THEIR CHRISTIANITY should be acceptable.
Mat 10:25 It is enough for the disciple that he be as his master, and the servant as his lord. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more shall they call them of his household?
Joh 15:20 Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also.
app. If you haven't faced rejection for your "CHRISTLIKENESS" YOU AREN'T LIKE CHRIST! Come after him to suffering rejection.
C. Follow Jesus - suffer so that others can live
and be killed, and after three days rise again.
exp. Jesus did not suffer without purpose.
ill. Many false religions teach self harm - catholic priests whipping themselves to try to earn righteousness.
exp. Jesus suffered to bring THE GOSPEL to the world.
ill. Someday in glory we will find that there were many who paid a great price for our salvation! (Somewhere along the way - martyred, imprisoned, mocked, tortured....)
ONE OF THOSE IS PAUL.
2 Corinthians 11:23 Are they ministers of Christ? (I speak as a fool) I am more; in labours more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths oft.
24 Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one.
25 Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep;
26 In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren;
27 In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness.
App. Have you come after Jesus to suffering? What have you suffered because you came after Jesus? What has it cost you? Have you suffered anything so that other's might live.
II. Come after me to surrender.
exp. Surrender is necessary because those who are not surrendered are in opposition to Jesus.
Matthew 12:30 He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad.
exp. We may think we are on God's side, but be on the side of the opposition.
ill. Paul/ Saul, before his conversion, thought he was on God's side - but he wasn't.
Act 26:14 And when we were all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice speaking unto me, and saying in the Hebrew tongue, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.
app. You could be deceived today in thinking that you are surrendered. But, in reality - truth be told you are resisting God. It happened in our story - Peter felt like he was really on the side of our Lord but in reality he was opposing Him.
A. Surrender your opposition.
32 And he spake that saying openly. (That he would suffer, die and rise again) And Peter took him, and began to rebuke him.
ill. Matthew records his words.
Mat 16:22 Then Peter took him, and began to rebuke him, saying, Be it far from thee, Lord: this shall not be unto thee.
exp. Peter thought he was being a zealous disciple of Jesus but was in fact opposing God's plan for the Lord Jesus. The plan upon which the salvation of the world was dependent. Peter was in opposition to God.
question: How did this opposition come about? Jesus said it - Peter said he was wrong to say so. Peter was in rebellion. He had stepped over onto Satan's side.
ill. Being in a Southern Baptist Church. Woman taught SS upstairs. ....and downstairs - topic, "rebellion" called on woman to pray at beginning and end.
1Timothy 2:12 But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.
1 Corinthians 14:34 Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law.
exp. The world calls this mysoginism. God calls it Biblicism. God has clearly said that a preacher is to be a man.
1 Timothy 3:1 This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work.
2 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach;
3 Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous;
4 One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity;
5 (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)
exp. The modern church is no different from Peter in our story who is standing in opposition to Jesus. This isn't a compliment.
app. Jesus clearly said this would be and Peter said - NO IT WON'T BE!
How many times has God clearly spoken to your heart about something, ONLY TO BE TOLD THAT HE IS WRONG? (social drinking, modesty, tithing, salvation, baptism, wicked music, church attendance, evangelism....) Is God wrong or are you?
B. Surrender your pride.
33 But when he had turned about and looked on his disciples, he rebuked Peter, saying, Get thee behind me, Satan:
exp. Peter was not Satan. But, what he said was Satanic in origin. Satan had no interest in furthering God's will but great interest in furthering his own will.
question: Why would Peter disagree?
Perhaps like others he thought the Messiah should set up His kingdom now and go to His throne. HIS PRIDE WANTED THE WORLD TO KNOW THAT JESUS WAS KING AND THAT HE WAS RIGHT TO FOLLOW JESUS. The cross would look like a failure.
Perhaps he in his pride thought it was wrong for Jesus to suffer and that he would keep him from it - because he was Peter.
question: Why would the modern church disagree with God's Word?
1.) They don't want to look like a failure in the eyes of the world.
2.) They don't want the church to look weak by being crucified.
app. The one world church (ecumenism) the liberal church (liberalism) the evangelical church (compromised evangelicalism) IS PROUD. They are not furthering the cause of Jesus but their own cause. (THE SAME IS TRUE OF US WHEN WE REJECT WHAT GOD SAYS FOR WHAT WE SAY. PRIDE MUST BE SURRENDERED IF WE ARE TO FOLLOW HIM.)
C. Surrender your pursuits.
for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but the things that be of men.
exp. Peter showed here an appetite for things of men and not for things of God. Is your desire God's desire?
ill. Churches are changing very quickly -
- changing their name and format of their services
- changing their service schedule
- changing their terminology and sanctuary - no pulpit, entertaining lights and sounds!
- changing their music, message, church dress, etc.
question: Are they changing to please God or to please men?
ill. Christian are changing very quickly today. Things that were clearly wrong in the past are not only not questioned - they are accepted as being absolutely right.
- immodesty is ok
- drinking, smoking, losely using God's name in vain is ok
- wicked music is not only ok it is embraced by the church
ill. Are they changing to please God or to please men? Is it God's will or man's will?
exp. THEY AREN'T FOLLOWING JESUS! HE HASN'T LED THEM THERE! They don't savour the things that be of God, but the things that be of men!
app. Is your greatest desire to do God's will? Jesus said, "I came not to do mine own will, but the will of Him that sent me." Can you say the same? Have you surrendered your pursuits? pride? You must IF YOU WOULD COME AFTER HIM.
III. Come after me to sacrifice.
ill. John Sung - Chinese Evangelist - brilliant man - grew up in a large home - son of a minister - family was very poor - God provided for him to be educated in the States - he was known in the States as a whiz kid - newspaper reports on his progress - on the ship back to China - through all his medals and diplomas overboard - kept the diploma for his doctorate to hand to his parents - resisted their argument that he provide for his siblings (though he could make 20 times more than his father) gave them 1700 USD he had saved - taught school and entered career in evangelism.
like Paul - Php 3:8 Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ,
A. Decide to sacrifice.
34 And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them,
Whosoever will come after me,
exp. I say again that many modern churches and many who call themselves Christians know nothing of following Jesus. IT IS THEIR CHOICE AS IT IS OUR CHOICE. We must decide to follow Jesus - BUT TO CHOSE TO FOLLOW JESUS IS TO CHOSE TO SACRIFICE.
ill. In evangelism - I often meet people who say, "I'm a Christian." But, they are no more Christian than the Devil himself.
app. Even so - You could call yourself a disciple of Jesus today, and although you are truly a Christian, you in reality are not a disciple of Jesus.
question: Why - because disciples of Jesus chose to follow him to sacrifice.
B. Deny to sacrifice.
let him deny himself,
ill. To deny yourself is to refuse yourself what your flesh requests.
ill. I don't run because I like running. I appreciate the discipline of running and the benefit my body gets from running. When I run I deny myself
- My feet ask to stop - I say, "no."
- My lungs ask to stop and I say, "no."
- My side says to stop and I say, "no."
exp. If a runner didn't deny himself - he wouldn't run.
question: If you don't deny yourself, you won't run where God wants you to as a disciple of Jesus.
app. How has your flesh asked you to stop following Jesus?
- I don't feel like having devotions.
- ....like praying, going to church, tithing,
- .... like turning that wicked tv/ music off.
What do you do? Do you say, "Request denied...." or do you rather refuse to deny yourself?
C. Depart to sacrifice.
and take up his cross, and follow me.
exp. Jesus said in v.31 he was going to his death. If they wanted to follow him they must be willing to die as well.
ill. Recently read a short biography of the covenanting martyr, James Renwick.
"He was employed at all season, and often in the night time, and in the most inclement weather, preaching the gospel in the fields....
After he had been engaged in the most arduous labours, he had little or no rest, and no comfortable place of retirement. He was obbliged to lodge in moss-hags, sheils of shepherds, or holes dug in the ground by his followers;....
Naturally of a weak constitution, he was at times, so bone down by sickness and total prostration of strength, that he was literally carried on the shoulders of faithful followers, or supported when on hroseback. He had frequently to flee from one hiding place to another, barefoot, or without some of his garments, as he had also to travel in disguises....
A price was upon his head, and persons were forbidden, on pain of death, to yield him shelter, or a mouthful of food, to converse, or correspond with him by writing, or to offer him the smallest service of humanity."
exp. James Renwick took up his cross for Jesus. He was martyred at Grassmarket in Edinburgh at the age of 26.
app. Who in our generation would suffer ANYTHING for Jesus? Will you? Will you take up your cross and follow Jesus?
IV. Come after me to salvation.
exp. Some who hold onto their life - will not only never be a disciple of Jesus - they will never come to Him for salvation.
A. You are lost if you hold onto your life.
35 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it;
question: How many men having heard the claims of Jesus death and resurrection for them, chose to keep their "lifestyle" and they are lost?
note: They like their booze, cigarrettes, womanizing, gambling, profanity, status, ill gotten gains .... so much - they chose to keep that life only to lose their soul eternally.
ill. Like King Agrippa - they say....
Act 26:28 Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian.
exp. I wonder if Agrippa still hears those words today as he burns in the lake of fire,....I almost believed.
app. You are foolish indeed today to refuse to surrender and sacrifice - thinking you would save your life - when doing so will only secure your destruction.
B. You are saved if you let go of your life.
but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel's, the same shall save it.
ill. Like the man who let go of his grip on his sinking life boat to grab hold of the hand of his Saviour - we must let go of our life to TAKE THE LIFE OF OUR SAVIOUR.
exp. He is pleading with them to take his eternal life.
Joh 10:28 And I give unto them eternal life;
app. Many cling today to sinking vessels - they are party boats - they seem unsinkable - Jesus is pleading for you to let go and take His hand. You can't take the hand of the Saviour without letting go of your life.
C. You are wise if you lose in life to profit in eternity.
36 For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?
37 Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?
ill. Whether or not somone likes President Donald Trump - they would have to admit - His lived life pretty large. He was one of the 400 wealthiest men in America. He's proven himself to be a strong political force. He became president of the United States which though in decline is still the number one world power.
exp. But, having accomplished all this - Donald Trump - like you or I stands on equal footing.
At the cross
At the great white throne judgment
At the gate of Heaven or Hell.
exp. Donald Trump needs to receive God's gift of salvation just like you or like me. Political power, riches.... do some things in this world. THEY DO NOTHING IN ETERNITY.
app. Are you living your life for what is really important - the SALVATION OF YOUR SOUL. THE SALVATION OF THE SOULS OF MEN?
V. Come after me to shamelesness.
exp. The world wants you to be ashamed of Jesus!
exp. Thomas Cramner - protestant leader of the Anglican Church. Imprisoned for 3 years and repeatedly visited by Catholic Priests demanding his recantation. He gave into their demands and did so. He was however not set free but taken instead to be burnt. Cranmer repented at his death and first thrust his hand into the flames saying, "As my hand offended writing contrary to my heart, my hand shall first be punished."
app. What are you going to do? Are you going to stand for Jesus of give into the world?
A. Be shameless before the world.
38 Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation;
question: Who is the church of Scotland trying to please by making saying homosexuality is ok? Why are they ashamed of God's position?
Lev 18:22 Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.
question: Who are they trying to please by having women ministers? Why are they ashamed of God's position?
question: Who are you trying to please when you are embarrassed to stand with Jesus? Why are you ashamed?
note: In all cases those who are ashamed - ARE ASHAMED BEFORE THOSE WHO WILFULLY VIOLATE GOD'S LAW AND HATE HIM.
app. Do you care to please the enemy of God? You are then ASHAMED OF THE GOD WHOM YOU SAY YOU FOLLOW.
B. Be shameless before the Father.
of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.
exp. Jesus isn't proud of the GAY PRIDE in any church who claims his name. He isn't proud of the ecumenism lack of Biblical separation and ecclesiastical separation. He will be ashamed of those WHO ARE ASHAMED OF HIM!
ill. Paul didn't want to be ashamed. He didn't care to please me - he chose to please God.
Gal 1:10 For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.
Php 1:20 According to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death.
app. Jesus calls you to come after him to shamelessness. If you care for what the world thinks and don't care about what he thinks, you stand ashamed by Him as you are ashamed of Him.
conclusion: Who wouldn't want to follow the SON OF GOD? We all should want to do so - if we understand who he is. However, though we all could follow, not all will follow. Because not all want to follow him when he says come....
Are you coming after him?
1.) Are you coming to suffer with Him? (Christians will suffer or they aren't Christians.)
2.) Are you coming to surrender for Him? (Your flesh is opposed to Christ and must surrender.)
3.) Are you coming to sacrifice for Him? (He denied himself. Will you do the same?)
4.) Are you coming to salvation through Him? (Dying to live.)
5.) Are you coming to shamelesness for Him? (Ashamed of Him and before Him - or unashamed?)
He's calling you - "Come after me." What are you going to do? What are you doing?