WHAT DO DISCIPLES DO?
Love the real Jesus.
Love real people.
At first glance, those seem like pretty generic statements. But they’re based on what Jesus says are the two greatest commandments: love God, and love your neighbor.
But we want to emphasize the word real.
1. It’s easy to love a Jesus who fits our expectations—who votes like us, thinks like us, and lets us do what we want.
But we don’t want to worship or follow a Jesus knockoff or a Jesus we’ve made in our own image—we want the real deal.
The One who is simultaneously the sinless and holy Son of God, and the “friend of sinners.”
The One who upholds the universe by the word of His power, but also calls His own heart “gentle and lowly.”
The One who calls us to forsake everything and follow Him, but who promises abundant life when we do so.
The One who died in our place and rose from the grave to give us new life.
Only that Jesus—the real Jesus—is worth loving.
2. It’s easy to love the idea of loving people; it’s harder to love people.
Why? Because we’re messy. Real people with real names have real sins and struggles that can be difficult to deal with.
But we’re commanded to love people specifically, not in the abstract. Jesus entered into the mess of our humanity to love individuals, and we should, too.
And of course, the best way to love real people is to tell them about the real Jesus. Introduce them to Him, then help them get closer to Him.
Proclaim the Good News about the real Jesus, and then help real people to follow Him. That’s what it’s all about.
And He said to him, "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself."