It is a word that many of us are familiar with, and some people use it to describe their lifestyle. But what exactly does “disciple” mean? If you ask Merriam-Webster, the word “disciple” means someone who accepts and assists in spreading the doctrines of another. Merriam-Webster also defines “disciple” as one of the 12 in the inner circle of Christ’s followers according to the Gospel accounts. Easton’s Bible Dictionary takes a different approach.
While Easton’s agrees that a “disciple” is someone who believes in a doctrine, in this case, the doctrine of Jesus Christ, Easton’s goes on to explain that a “disciple” is someone who rests on Christ’s sacrifice. Moreover, a “disciple” imbibes Christ’s spirit, meaning that person receives into the mind and retains what is Christ’s. Lastly, a “disciple” imitates Christ’s examples (Matt. 10:24, Luke 14:26-27, 33, John 6:69).
Stop for a moment and think about your walk with the Lord. Have you accepted and assisted in the spreading of His doctrine (John 3:16, John 14:6, Mark 16:15-16)? At the same time, would you say that you rest on His sacrifice in dying for your sins on the cross? Remember, we are saved by grace through faith. It is not our works (Ephesians 2:8-9) that earn salvation because none of us (especially me) would be good enough to earn a one-way ticket to Heaven (Romans 3:23). The crucifixion of Jesus was the means in which He paid for our sins (Romans 5:8), and our sins must be paid for in full (Romans 6:23).
Having said all this, are you living like Him? To be sure, we are still imperfect individuals, even with Christ living inside those that have prayed for and received Christ as savior (Romans 10:13). However, Jesus tells disciples in John 14:15 that, “If you love me, keep my commandments.”
I realize this is a lot of information to take in, but Easter, aka Resurrection Sunday, is just around the corner. For Christians, it is kind of a big deal. Actually, it is the biggest day of the year. After all, it is the day in which Christians observe the resurrection of Christ. Yes, Christmas is a major event, but as the song “It’s About The Cross” explains, the beginning of the story is wonderful and great, but it’s the ending that can save you and that’s why we celebrate. Celebrating the resurrection of Jesus makes you a disciple. Still, as I have tried to explain here, that is not all that makes a “disciple.”
Are you a disciple?