Presentation on theme: "Ch.9: Discipleship: Following in the Footsteps of Jesus."— Presentation transcript:
Ch.9: Discipleship: Following in the Footsteps of Jesus
The Fellowship of the Unashamed To be a disciple of Jesus Christ requires bold action and sometimes dramatic commitment. Jesus taught that being a disciple means: – putting aside personal desires to follow the Father’s will – accepting suffering, even to the point of death – serving others – loving others, even one’s enemies
Discipleship Means Following Jesus and His Teachings Being a follower of Jesus involves being his: – Pupil: learning from him – Friend: entering into a personal relationship with him – Follower: imitating his example of sharing the Good News with all In all three senses being a disciple means putting into practice specific commands given by Jesus:
Following Jesus’ Commands Jesus tells us that we will remain in his love if we keep his commands. Jesus did not abolish the Law of the Old Testament; he fulfilled it. Thus, we are called both to keep the Ten Commandments and to incorporate the Beatitudes into our lives as disciples of Christ.
The first three commandments concern how we can love God with our whole heart, soul, strength, and mind: 1. I am the Lord your God; you shall not have strange gods before me. – The first commandment requires us to practice the virtue of religion, which gives God his just due simply because he is God.
1. I am the Lord your God; you shall not have strange gods before me. We practice the virtue of religion through: – adoration, prayer, works of sacrifice, and keeping our promises and vows – avoiding sins against the faith like heresy, apostasy, and schism – avoiding offenses against God like atheism, idolatry, irreligion, sacrilege, simony
Offenses against this commandment include: – Perjury: lying while under oath in court – Blasphemy: any thought, word, or act that expresses contempt for God 2. You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain. The second commandment forbids any wrong use of God’s name or the names of Jesus, Mary, and the saints.
3. Remember to keep holy the Lord’s day. The third commandment requires us to keep Sunday holy, especially by celebrating the Eucharist. We also sanctify this day by avoiding unnecessary work, spending time with friends and family, and enjoying God’s gifts.
The last seven commandments show us how to love our neighbor as we love ourselves. 4. Honor your father and your mother. The fourth commandment calls parents and children to respect one another: – Parents should provide a loving home, see to their children’s education, and raise them to be responsible adults. – Children should obey their parents and care for them in old age.
5. You shall not kill. The fifth commandment demands that we respect life (from conception to natural death). Offenses against this commandment include murder, suicide, capital punishment, unjust war, and medical research that destroys life. We also show our respect for life by eating healthy foods, exercising, getting proper rest, and avoiding harmful substances.
6. You shall not commit adultery; 9. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife. The 6th and 9th commandments both teach us how to use sexuality in accord with God’s plan. In order to do so we exercise the virtues of chastity, purity, and modesty. Offenses against this commandment include adultery, divorce, polygamy, incest, sexual abuse, free unions, birth control, masturbation, fornication, pornography, rape, homosexual acts.
7. You shall not steal; 10. You shall not covet anything that belongs to your neighbor. The 7th and 10th commandments require justice in our dealings with others, both individuals and communities. Offenses against the 7th include theft, fraud, paying unjust wages, price fixing, corruption, shoddy work, tax evasion, and broken contracts. The 10th warns us of covetousness, which leads to immoral attitudes like greed, avarice, and envy.
8. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. The eighth commandment demands that both individuals and societies be truthful in their relationships with others. Being truthful leads to respect for others, their reputations, and their right to privacy. Offenses against this commandment include perjury, snap judgments, detraction, calumny, cheating.
The Beatitudes Incorporating the Beatitudes into our lives is also a key part of being a disciple of Christ. They teach attitudes we should make a part of our lives.
Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven: When we are poor in spirit, we recognize all we have as a gift from God and show our appreciation by using our gifts for others. Blessed are they who mourn, for they shall be comforted: We should mourn over our sins and the injustices committed against God and those in need, which should lead us to action.
Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the land: The gift of meekness helps us to know the most appropriate time to feel and express anger. Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied: This means acting on behalf of others, especially those who are suffering.
Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy: Jesus challenged us to forgive those who have wronged us and not to hold grudges. Blessed are the clean of heart, for they shall see God: Those who are clean of heart are undivided in their commitment to God and have their priorities straight.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God: Jesus’ followers must recognize that we are all members of the same family and work to settle disputes. Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven: Sometimes being a disciple of Christ means being misunderstood, mocked, and abused.
More Requirements of Discipleship Evangelization— proclaiming the Good News in such a way that people’s hearts and lives are changed—is the mission of all disciples. However, we can effectively evangelize only when we are good stewards of our God-given talents and gifts.
A Disciple of Jesus Is an Evangelist Before ascending to Heaven, Jesus called on his disciples to evangelize, i.e., to go forth and make disciples of all the nations. Living the Gospel is an excellent way to evangelize. This can be done by: – respecting life – doing one’s work with skill and diligence – respecting laws – avoiding hatred and violence – being honest – demonstrating chastity
A Disciple of Jesus is a Good Steward A steward is a person who carefully and responsibly manages something entrusted to his or her care. Since everything we have is a gift from God, being a good steward means sharing our time, talents, treasures, and tradition with others.
Everyone is called to exercise stewardship by virtue of their share in the common priesthood. – We are strengthened in this role by the sacraments. Some are also called to the ministerial priesthood. – This ministry is conferred by Holy Orders.
Putting Discipleship into Practice Putting discipleship into practice means that we first, last, and always are loving God and neighbor. We practice such love in a number of concrete ways:
Jesus calls us to love by forgiving. – The greatest challenge of loving is often forgiving even our enemies. Love requires self-denial, putting the needs of others before our own. – It is paradoxical but true that in dying to ourselves we gain true life.
Jesus commands us as disciples to respond to the least in our midst. – We will be judged based on how we have loved others, especially the poor. As disciples we must avoid greed. – Greed is one of the greatest obstacles to love. – Performing acts of love without drawing attention to oneself is a sign of overcoming greed.