Saturday, January 14, 2012

On Following

Sunday is the third in a series of sermons based on the phrase: It's Time. Using the "B"lectionary Gospel texts, we saw how Simeon was able to say "Now, Lord, let your servant depart in peace." Last week we explored Jesus' baptism in Mark 1:4-11 and God's beginning words to him "You are my Son, whom I love, in you I am well pleased." We reflected on what it means to have God declare our identity, his love for us, and his pleasure in us.
This coming Sunday, the text comes from John 1:43 "Follow me" Jesus declares to Philip. How I love to lead and how I resist following! One of the costs of preaching a text like this is taking a deep and hard look at my own spirit of independence and a desire to lead, not follow. But looking at all the places where Jesus uses that phrase makes a pretty deep impression:

Matt 4:19/Mk 1:17

“Come, follow me, and I will send you to fish for people.”

Matt 8:22/Lk 9:59

“Follow me, and let the dead bury the dead.”

Matt 9:9/ Mk 2:14/ Lk 5:27

“Follow me” (to Matthew)

Matt 10:38

“Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me.”

Matt 16:24/ Mk 8:34/ Lk 9:23

“Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves, take up their cross and follow me.”

Matt 19:21/ Mk 10:21/ Lk 18:22

“If you want to be perfect, go sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then, come, follow me.”

Jn 1:43

“Follow me” (to Philip)

Jn 10:27

My sheep listen listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.”

Jn 12:26

“Whoever serves me must follow me.”

Jn 21:19

“Follow me” (to Peter on the beach)

Jn 21:22

“You must follow me” (to Peter asking questions about others)


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