What Does It Take To Be A Follower Of Jesus Christ Today

Welcome to Wondercafe2!

A community where we discuss, share, and have some fun together. Join today and become a part of it!

unsafe

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,336
Reaction score
1,025
Image result for can you follow Jesus without Jesus



Are you wiling l to deny self ----

Are you willing to climb down ladder not up to be Spiritually successful in promoting God's Kingdom ----

Are you willing to make a commitment to follow Jesus and not just be a fan of His ---

Are you willing to receive Jesus in your heart and not just move your lips to say that you are follower of Jesus ----

Are you willing to stand up against people who criticize you for being a follower of Jesus ----

Are you willing to actually follow Jesus the person and not a Religion that just talks about Jesus ----



Just how far are you willing to go to Truly follow Jesus Christ ?????-----That is the real question ---
 

Pavlos Maros

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,332
Reaction score
387
Q, What Does It take To Be A Follower Of Jesus Christ Today.
A, A complete suspension of disbelief.
 

chansen

Pleasant Enough
Messages
10,469
Reaction score
7,085
I would do literally nothing to follow Jesus. There is nothing good in the message that is unique, and plenty of unique that is bad. Judging by his followers, I am quite happy to move briskly in the opposite direction.
 

Mendalla

Eastern Lowland Gorilla
Messages
30,561
Reaction score
14,464
Judging by his followers, I am quite happy to move briskly in the opposite direction.
I'd happily join a church or other community group that had people like @Seeler, @Carolla, and @Tabitha in its ranks. But, yeah, the whole problem is that the same stories and teachings that guide them also guide @unsafe and others that I am less likely to align with.

And, as always, the devil is in the details. The constant sniping over whether certain members are Christian or behaving in a Christian way suggests there's more to following Jesus than simply reading the Gospels and doing what he teaches. Everyone thinks/claims that's what they are doing but the mixed messages suggest there is more involved.

Was it Gandhi who said he liked our Christ but he didn't think much of Christians?
I think so. It was someone very wise at least.
 

paradox3

Well-Known Member
Messages
11,087
Reaction score
4,174
In his sermon on Sunday, our minister said that Christianity is both weird and difficult. There are other world faiths or philosophies we could choose that would be easier. Think this is true?

His comments tied into Jesus' direction to the disciples to be salt of the earth and light to the world. He was also preparing us for Palm Sunday and what lies ahead after that.
 

chansen

Pleasant Enough
Messages
10,469
Reaction score
7,085
In his sermon on Sunday, our minister said that Christianity is both weird and difficult. There are other world faiths or philosophies we could choose that would be easier. Think this is true?
No. It's still the dominant religion here. If everyone around you believes something completely asinine, it's easy to fall in line and believe the asinine thing, too.
 

Mendalla

Eastern Lowland Gorilla
Messages
30,561
Reaction score
14,464
There are other world faiths or philosophies we could choose that would be easier.
I'd be curious to know if he gave examples. Buddhism certainly isn't. Hinduism? Maybe. Judaism isn't unless you take a fairly lax attitude to the Law. Ditto Islam.

Now, if you get into "life philosophies", the two great Hellenistic schools of Stoicism and Epicureanism aren't especially difficult or onerous to follow. Neither demands faith in any kind of supernatural (in fact, Epicureanism is basically materialistic, esp. modern forms), just a particular outlook on life. As I've discussed in the past, I am at least somewhat a follower of the latter and have been studying the former more in recent years.
 

BetteTheRed

Resident Heretic
Messages
16,864
Reaction score
7,968
Leaving Christianity would not be particularly difficult for me. However, it's also familiar. All the literature is familiar, its metaphors and allegories embedded in all of the art and literature around me.

Many other religions really require a second language, like Judaism and Islam. Many others require familiarity with cultures that have different values than ours, in many subtle and abrupt ways.

I think "world" type "religions" - UU-ism, other forms of secular thoughtful humanism, would be easy to move to. A move to pure atheism is always possible, as well, although I have a spiritual side which might then go un-nourished.

To me, to be a follower of Jesus is to be a follower of the Way of kindness and non-violent resistance to violence of all types. I think that covers it. I pretend to be good at neither of those things, although I have a certain tendency to "resistance".
 

Mendalla

Eastern Lowland Gorilla
Messages
30,561
Reaction score
14,464
I think "world" type "religions" - UU-ism, other forms of secular thoughtful humanism, would be easy to move to.
The nice thing with UU'ism is that because it is rooted in a progressive form of Christianity, it is often quite familiar. Sunday morning services that roughly follow a Protestant format (mostly, it varies between congregations). Similar practices, just augmented by drawing on other traditions. Similar governance to mainline Protestant denominations like the UCCan.

Where it can get strange and scary coming from Protestantism is when you start thinking about the implications of the principles. The first principle alone doesn't demand just tolerance for every person, but respect. The fourth makes your spiritual path your responsibility with no falling back on doctrine or dogma to justify your choices. And so on.
 

Mendalla

Eastern Lowland Gorilla
Messages
30,561
Reaction score
14,464
Aaand I think we've derailed a bit so I'll say a bit on the original topic, though it's hardly a new one around here.

To be a follower of Jesus, one must embrace the story and teachings of Jesus and incorporate them into one's spiritual life in some way. Ideally, his example of selfless service and sacrifice as well. All else, such as whether he's a prophet or Divine Saviour, is detail when deciding who is a follower. The only question mark for me is someone like Gretta Vosper who doesn't seem to really incorporate much of Jesus into her practice and preaching anymore.
 

paradox3

Well-Known Member
Messages
11,087
Reaction score
4,174
I have drifted away from Christian faith a few times in my life but I have never started to identify with any other philosophy or world faith. I skirted on the edges of agnosticism for a while but I never identified as an atheist.

Non observant Protestant was probably the best description of me in those years.

Unitarian Universalism interested me enough to explore it at one point but I did not make the jump.
 

BetteTheRed

Resident Heretic
Messages
16,864
Reaction score
7,968
The only question mark is someone like GV who doesn't seem to really incorporate much of Jesus into her practice and preaching anymore.
Ah, you can get there from here. Love as the spirit of god, acts of love as god incarnated, social justice - love at higher levels, etc. Values-based. Very logical, can be hard to be made spiritual? See, I think everyone who acts compassionately to their neighbour in some fashion, is a "follower of Jesus", but as you've pointed out, that's disrespectful to chansen, among others, so we don't do it.
 

paradox3

Well-Known Member
Messages
11,087
Reaction score
4,174
See, I think everyone who acts compassionately to their neighbour in some fashion, is a "follower of Jesus", but as you've pointed out, that's disrespectful to chansen, among others, so we don't do it.
Yes, disrespectful to some folks and imperialistic, even.
 

paradox3

Well-Known Member
Messages
11,087
Reaction score
4,174
Back to the OP. What am I willing to do to follow Jesus?

It might be easier to say what I am not willing to do. I am not willing to sell all my possessions. I am not willing to go on a missionary journey with no money or extra clothes. I am not willing to trust that someone will offer me accommodation in any town I visit. Etc. etc.

Just reading over some of @unsafe's questions. Some of them seem loaded to me. Am I willing to be a follower and not a fan of Jesus? I dunno . . . . what is unsafe getting at here?
 

Mendalla

Eastern Lowland Gorilla
Messages
30,561
Reaction score
14,464
Ah, you can get there from here. Love as the spirit of god, acts of love as god incarnated, social justice - love at higher levels, etc.
But once you no longer specifically reference Jesus, what makes it Christian? How are you "following Jesus"?

See, I think everyone who acts compassionately to their neighbour in some fashion, is a "follower of Jesus", but as you've pointed out, that's disrespectful to chansen, among others, so we don't do it.
It's also disrespectful, arguably, to those who do actually draw on Jesus' teachings rather than Buddha or Confucious or whomever.
 

paradox3

Well-Known Member
Messages
11,087
Reaction score
4,174
I am not fond of the whole Cosmic Christ thing either, for similar reasons.

Admittedly I don't know much about it. :unsure:

I recall starting a thread to explore the idea of the Cosmic Christ on the original WC and I ended up no further ahead in my understanding.
 
Top