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Burnham: A true disciple
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A true disciple of Christ has more to do than just be a faithful follower.

In our world as it was in Jesus’ time, we will have to stand up and fight for Christ. They must fight to be real for Christ.
The urge to be hypocritical is more common than one might think. We try to mask our true feelings of pride, anger or greed by putting on smiles and justifying actions or motives we know are not the truth.

But it is senseless to try to hide from or fool God that which he already knows. (Lk. 12:2,3). The true disciple has to fight the fear of man and what they can do especially when they fear man more than they fear God Himself. (Lk. 12:4,5)
Jesus is not trying to scare anyone here, but simply replace proper fear where it belongs. We should fear God, not man because it is God’s opinion not man’s that matters most. It is pleasing God not man that is to be our priority. It is following God’s will not man’s agenda that should be guiding our path. And it is God who is loving, guiding, protecting and leading us, not man.

The true disciple has a mandate to confess and profess the Jesus openly before man (Lk. 12:8-10).
Here we find Jesus telling the Pharisees about the unforgiveable sin — unforgiveable because one who continues to reject the promptings of the Holy Spirit and will not even realize he is a sinner, will never repent. Therefore by his own repeated refusal he will shut himself out of the kingdom of heaven. The Pharisees had refused God’s true Word so long; they rejected the true God of His Word claiming Jesus was actually the devil. Men may resist the truth, explain it away or even out right reject it, but that doesn’t mean the true disciple of Christ is to stop proclaiming it. Let them respond to the truth of God’s Word as they will, we must be faithful to proclaim it.

The true disciple must not worry about defending yourself (Lk. 12:11,12). If you are a true disciple of Christ being real, fearing only God and proclaiming His truth, it is not a matter of “if” it is a matter of “when” you will come under attack and false accusations. In those times, your own integrity will stand the test and God will be your help. Being true disciples means more than faithful following, it means we’ll be in for a fight just like our Lord. “Meanwhile, when a crowd of many thousands had gathered, so that they were trampling on one another, Jesus began to speak first to his disciples,…” (Lk 12:1)

Dr. William Burnham is pastor of Point of Grace Church in Covington. He can be reached at