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Class 2 What is Discipleship?

Being a disciple of a rabbi in Jesus’ time was a deeply transformative and immersive experience. Discipleship involved much more than simply learning religious teachings; it encompassed a holistic way of life centered around the rabbi’s teachings and example. Discipleship was characterized by a close, intimate relationship between the rabbi and his disciples. Disciples lived in close proximity to their rabbi, often traveling with him and sharing in his daily life. This close relationship allowed disciples to observe their rabbi’s actions, attitudes, and teachings firsthand, shaping their own beliefs and behaviors accordingly.

Secondly, discipleship was a lifelong commitment marked by dedication and sacrifice. Disciples willingly left behind their previous lives, including their families, occupations, and possessions, to follow their rabbi wholeheartedly. This commitment required humility, obedience, and a willingness to prioritize the rabbi’s teachings above all else. Discipleship involved active participation and practical learning. Disciples didn’t just passively listen to their rabbi’s teachings; they actively engaged with the material, asking questions, seeking clarification, and applying the teachings to their daily lives. Disciples learned not only through formal instruction but also through observation, imitation, and practical experience.

Overall, being a disciple of a rabbi in Jesus’ time was a transformative journey of spiritual growth, characterized by close relationship, lifelong commitment, and active participation in the rabbi’s teachings and way of life. It was an immersive experience that shaped every aspect of a disciple’s identity and existence.

Key Scriptures:

John 13:34 “So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. **35 **Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.”

Luke 14:25 “A large crowd was following Jesus. He turned around and said to them, **26 **“If you want to be my disciple, you must, by comparison, hate everyone else—your father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even your own life. Otherwise, you cannot be my disciple. **27 **And if you do not carry your own cross and follow me, you cannot be my disciple. **28 **“But don’t begin until you count the cost. For who would begin construction of a building without first calculating the cost to see if there is enough money to finish it?**29 **Otherwise, you might complete only the foundation before running out of money, and then everyone would laugh at you. **30 **They would say, ‘There’s the person who started that building and couldn’t afford to finish it!’ **31 **“Or what king would go to war against another king without first sitting down with his counselors to discuss whether his army of 10,000 could defeat the 20,000 soldiers marching against him? **32 **And if he can’t, he will send a delegation to discuss terms of peace while the enemy is still far away. **33 **So you cannot become my disciple without giving up everything you own.

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