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The Cost of Discipleship

Shalom potential and current Messianic Discipleship Institute students.

Years ago while taking some a seminary class called Communion With God, based on Habbukuk 2, I asked Adonai how can I serve Him and He was very clear in my prayer and journaling to ‘go and make disciples’.

I responded like many of the prophets of old have in the past, ‘how Lord, I have no resources, no formal seminary degree, just a zeal and desire of the Torah and what You have revealed to Your servant these past 30 years’.

Adonai’s reply was ‘I will bring them to you’.

So I set out with the help of several fellow Messianic leaders to develop new Messianic based courses and license some of the classes I had been taking…and created a website to have a presence.

Again the Word of the Lord came to me, ‘I will bring them to you’.

And sure enough, the next day I received a call from a Pastor in Columbus, Ohio that he had been led in prayer to our website and wanted to become a disciple and learn the Hebraic Roots of the faith!

This same Pastor now has a Bachelor’s of Theology from MDI, has formed a new Messianic Congregation and is teaching others the same classes he started with – this can only come from the hand of God.

Fast forward to the last two years and we have been steadying building and as you know have been led to acquire property overseas to build a MDI training facility for all nations.

Our vision is to train up the next generation of leaders and plant Congregation throughout the world wherever the Lord calls us to go.

We have already planted two new congregations in the Philippines, but we could plant dozens more immediately if we had trained leaders to shepherd the flocks. Plus, we are receiving calls from China and have other opportunities in other parts of Asia.

Over the years many have expressed a desire to become Disciples of the living God and to further the Message of the Kingdom of God throughout the world – but some have shrunk back and allowed the evil one to place doubts and obstacles in their path to not continue.

So now I want to go over a short lesson in Discipleship and what it truly means to be a Disciple of Yeshua.

Learning to Become a Disciple

1. A Disciple Leaves All To Follow His Teacher

Luke 14:25-34 Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

25 Large crowds were traveling along with Yeshua. Turning, He said to them, 26 “If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father, his mother, his wife, his children, his brothers and his sisters, yes, and his own life besides, he cannot be My talmid. 27 Whoever does not carry his own execution-stake and come after me cannot be My talmid.

28 “Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Don’t you sit down and estimate the cost, to see if you have enough capital to complete it? 29 If you don’t, then when you have laid the foundation but can’t finish, all the onlookers start making fun of you 30 and say, ‘This is the man who began to build, but couldn’t finish!’

31 “Or again, suppose one king is going out to wage war with another king. Doesn’t he first sit down and consider whether he, with his ten thousand troops, has enough strength to meet the other one, who is coming against him with twenty thousand? 32 If he hasn’t, then while the other is still far away, he sends a delegation to inquire about terms for peace.

33 “So every one of you who doesn’t renounce all that he has cannot be My talmid. 34 Salt is excellent. But if even the salt becomes tasteless, what can be used to season it?

So what is Yeshua saying here?

He is saying, I have called you to leave everything and follow Me, I have great plans for you and your life and I don’t want you to be distracted with all the cares of the world and your life. I want you to give your full attention to studying, learning and the time and training I am making in you so that you will be prepared to go out and create more Disciples after I am gone.

Matthew 4:18-20 Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

18 As Yeshua walked by Lake Kinneret, he saw two brothers who were fishermen — Shim‘on, known as Kefa, and his brother Andrew — throwing their net into the lake. 19 Yeshua said to them, “Come after me, and I will make you fishers for men!” 20 At once they left their nets and went with him.

2. A Disciple Does Not Make Excuses or Enact Demands to his/her Training

Isaiah 45:9 Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

9 Woe to anyone who argues with His Maker, like potsherds lying on the ground! Does the clay ask the potter, “What are you doing?” or, “What’s this you’re making, that has no hands?”

A disciple’s hardest thing to learn is ‘trust’ – especially when you do not fully understand what your Teacher is teaching you and molding and shaping righteous character in your life.

John 6:63-69 Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

63 It is the Spirit who gives life, the flesh is no help. The words I have spoken to you are Spirit and life, 64 yet some among you do not trust.” (For Yeshua knew from the outset which ones would not trust him, also which one would betray him.) 65 “This,” he said, “is why I told you that no one can come to me unless the Father has made it possible for him.”

66 From this time on, many of his talmidim turned back and no longer traveled around with him. 67 So Yeshua said to the Twelve, “Don’t you want to leave too?” 68 Shim‘on Kefa answered him, “Lord, to whom would we go? You have the word of eternal life. 69 We have trusted, and we know that you are the Holy One of God.”

3. A Disciple Realizes their Rewards are not of this World

6 A man approached Yeshua and said, “Rabbi, what good thing should I do in order to have eternal life?” He said to him, 17 “Why are you asking Me about good? There is One who is good! But if you want to obtain eternal life, observe the mitzvot.” 18 The man asked him, “Which ones?” and Yeshua said, “Don’t murder, don’t commit adultery, don’t steal, don’t give false testimony 19 honor father and mother and love your neighbor as yourself.” 20 The young man said to him, “I have kept all these; where do I still fall short?” 21 Yeshua said to him, “If you are serious about reaching the goal, go and sell your possessions, give to the poor, and you will have riches in heaven. Then come, follow Me!” 22 But when the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he was wealthy.

23 Then Yeshua said to his talmidim, “Yes. I tell you that it will be very hard for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. 24 Furthermore, I tell you that it is easier for a camel to pass through a needle’s eye than for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of God.” 25 When the talmidim heard this they were utterly amazed. “Then who,” they asked, “can be saved?” 26 Yeshua looked at them and said, “Humanly, this is impossible; but with God everything is possible.” 27 Kefa replied, “Look, we have left everything and followed You. So what will we have?” 28 Yeshua said to them, “Yes. I tell you that in the regenerated world, when the Son of Man sits on His glorious throne, you who have followed Me will also sit on twelve thrones and judge the twelve tribes of Isra’el. 29 Everyone who has left houses, brothers, sisters, father, mother, children or fields for My sake will receive a hundred times more, and he will obtain eternal life. 30 But many who are first will be last, and many who are last will be first.

In Summary:

As humans, we want a perfect path, a clear path with no obstacles, where everything falls into place, but we forget to realize that we have an adversary who wants to do all he can to discourage us and put obstacles in our paths to keep us from Torah, from prayer, from each other and from having a deep personal relationship with Abba our Father and Yeshua our Redeemer and Bridegroom.

Each of these things are put here to test us, to see if we really want to be Disciples of Messiah or merely followers, there is a difference.

A Disciple not only follows in their Teacher’s foot-steps but later becomes a Teacher of others also, a follower simply follows and never becomes a Teacher or Leader and hence becomes prey for the devourer in this world.

Messiah Yeshua is the only path forward and has called us to follow Him.

You have a decision to make, we have done our part and now it’s up to you whether you want to continue with your part or not.

I believe each of you desires to move forward and further the Kingdom of God and fulfill the Lord’s directive and mission.

So, the question becomes, what is holding you back?

Contact me and we can discuss.

In Yeshua’s love.

Pastor Jeffrey

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