Chapter # 5 Paragraph # 1 Study # 6
February 25, 2007
Lincolnton, N.C.

<324> Thesis: Following Jesus is rooted in promise and is carried out by a "return", a "forsaking", and an actual "copying" of the actions of Jesus. Introduction: We are living in the last days of the Age of the Church. Because of this we are immersed in a level of deception such as has not existed since the last days of the Age of Israel. The number and deceptiveness of the delusions is very great. We have vast numbers of people who are claiming to be following Jesus but who have almost no discernment as to what that means. Recently two very high profile "evangelical leaders" have been revealed to be extremely deluded frauds. And they are simply the latest in a long line of deceivers who have practiced the "visible faith" with sufficient expertise as to draw thousands upon thousands to attend to their "teaching". These realities make our consideration of Luke's record this morning a problematical endeavor. The question before us is this: what does "following Jesus" really mean? Our text tells us that Peter, James, and John "brought their boats to land, forsook all, and followed Jesus". But, what does that look like today? When Jesus was physically upon the earth, it was pretty easy to see if a person was "following", at least in a physical way. But, Jesus is no longer upon the earth in a material body and it is no longer easy to see who is following and who is not. In those days, eleven out of the twelve were really following; in our day we will be "lucky" to find one in twelve who profess to be who really are. So, with the level of delusion ramped up to the max, we are going to approach the text to see what it actually says.