What did I learn about Jesus?
- Jesus clearly identified those who he called as leaders, and he focused first on them.
- He understood the importance of solitude and prayer and sought it out.
What did I learn about disciple-making?
- We must evaluate our lives and ask how we are aligned to the mission of Jesus… or distracted from it.
Extended thoughts and observations from elder Steve Maxwell:
Leadership: v1-11, The book of Luke is so much more descriptive of the calling of the first disciples and specifically Peter than what we read in Matthew 4 and Mark 1. Jesus clearly identified Peter as leader, one who had influence on those around him, and he intentionally focused first on him. There is a leadership lesson here.
Solitude: v16 “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.” Within the gospels, crowds are so prominent; crowds following Jesus, crowds pressed upon, crowds were fed by him, crowds came to him for healing, and ultimately crowds shouted out for his death. However, Jesus understood the importance of solitude, of prayer in a lonely place. There are lots of references to Jesus seeking solitude.
Our thoughts: v22 How shocked the Pharisees and teachers of the law must have been when Jesus called them out for what they were thinking. Jesus knows my thoughts as well – What if he called me out for what I am thinking?
Purpose: I love how clear Jesus was about his purpose. We saw this in chapter 4:43 – “I must proclaim the good news of the Kingdom of God to other towns also, because that is why I was sent.” and then here in v32, “I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” Jesus acted based on a clear sense of purpose, rather than impulse, convenience or random opportunity. At times people even tried to keep him from this purpose (see Luke 4:42), but Jesus was all about his mission, not about crowd-pleasing. I think about this in regard to our mission to “go and make disciples…” How focused am I/are we on our mission, how does our mission inform our daily decisions, how easily I am/are we distracted away from this purpose?
What do you see?