A sermon for the Watford church of Christ
QUESTION: What does it mean to ‘follow’ someone today?
- Women Following Jesus, Lk 8; Mk 15; Lk 23
“After this, Jesus traveled about from one town and village to another, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom of God. The Twelve were with him, and also some women who had been cured of evil spirits and diseases: Mary (called Magdalene) from whom seven demons had come out; Joanna the wife of Chuza, the manager of Herod’s household; Susanna; and many others. These women were helping to support them out of their own means.”(Luke 8:1–3 NIV11)
“In Galilee these women had followed him and cared for his needs. Many other women who had come up with him to Jerusalem were also there.” (Mark 15:41 NIV11)
“But all those who knew him, including the women who had followed him from Galilee, stood at a distance, watching these things.” (Luke 23:49 NIV11)
QUESTION: What did it mean for these women to ‘follow’ Jesus?
As disciples, seeing his life, hearing his teaching, watching him interact with people
Jesus travelled, lots of moving about, 12 + women – how find accommodation, travel? High commitment. Supporting him in mission, listening to him, talking to crowds as listen, supporting Jesus, work, out of own means, things that belong to them. Women disciples there as he teaches large crowd.
What does it mean to follow Jesus as a disciple?
Leave – Go his way
Support his agenda
Essentially – “Jesus is Lord”
- Women Learning from Jesus, Mk3; Matt 14; 15
QUESTION: What examples can you think of in the Gospels?
““Who are my mother and my brothers?” he asked. Then he looked at those seated in a circle around him and said, “Here are my mother and my brothers!” (Mark 3:33–34 NIV11)
“The number of those who ate was about five thousand men, besides women and children.” (Matthew 14:21 NIV11)
“The number of those who ate was four thousand men, besides women and children.” (Matthew 15:38 NIV11)
Taught by him, in mixed groups as many taught
QUESTION: What did it mean for these women to learn from Jesus?
Sacrifice time – inconvenient
Listen with the object of learning
- Women Knowing Jesus – by Experiencing the Life of Jesus, Cross, Resurrection….
QUESTION: What shows us that the women were close to Jesus?
To the Cross
“A large number of people followed him, including women who mourned and wailed for him.” (Luke 23:27 NIV11)
“But all those who knew him, including the women who had followed him from Galilee, stood at a distance, watching these things.” Luke 23:49
“Some women were watching from a distance. Among them were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James the younger and of Joseph, and Salome. In Galilee these women had followed him and cared for his needs. Many other women who had come up with him to Jerusalem were also there.” Mark 15:40-41
To the tomb
“The women who had come with Jesus from Galilee followed Joseph and saw the tomb and how his body was laid in it.” Lk 23:55
What shows us that the women were close to Jesus?
At the cross, at the tomb, feeling fear, doubt, hope
What does it mean to learn from Jesus as a disciple?
Want his life — accept when God takes us into experiences that are like those of Jesus
“I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death,”(Philippians 3:10 NIV11)
Women were an integral part of the ministry of Jesus
What if every time we read ‘disciple’ we think men and women unless it specifically excludes women?
We see no tension between the men and women followers of Jesus
We see a symbiotic joint ministry support and learning situation
This is really about Jesus
He was so inspiring people followed
Do you know this Jesus?
Discipleship is the only way to that vision
Have you made that decision?
What holds you back?
Remember the promise
“everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life.” (Matthew 19:29 NIV11)
Please add your comments on this week’s topic. We learn best when we learn in community.
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“Worship the LORD with gladness; come before him with joyful songs.” (Psalms 100:2 NIV11)
God bless, Malcolm