Three types of Jesus Followers
We take our study today from the book of Mark, Chapter 14. Let’s start from verse 12 – where Christ’s disciples go to prepare the Passover (aka The Last Supper) – and let’s work together through to verse 50 where we find recorded the damning sentence which is the title of this instruction: “They all left Him and fled”.
Two of His disciples are sent to prepare the Meal (v13) and later in (v17) it says He came to the upper room with the Twelve. This informs us (despite Michelangelo’s epic painting of the Last Supper) that there were more than the twelve disciples in the room with Him. Mark’s account doesn’t mess around. Right off the bat (v18) records that Jesus speaks of the one who will betray Him.
The first type of Jesus Follower – the one who betrays
When we read these lines centuries later – we inevitably think of Judas. But perhaps its time we turn the lamp of Truth upon ourselves and broaden our understanding. The first type of Jesus Follower is the one who betrays. This is when we live the double life – a life divided between displaying a polished moral identity to others and living rancid and unrighteous behaviors – either alone or to a select group of “friends.” Christ says “It would have been good for that man if he had not been born.” This is the line of demarcation set by Jesus. We tolerate, we rationalize, we indulge against this weighty judgment. We soften and ignore our responsibilities and obligations to God and Others; we harden our hearts keeping our conscience and the Work of the Holy Spirit at arms length so we may lurch and grasp fleeting pleasures in an endless and hopeless quest to fulfill our lusts. We deny this of course – just as His disciples did when He said one was to betray Him. They, all of them, in turn, said “Lord, surely you don’t mean me.”
You should check out the video for more content about the Lord’s Supper, the hymn they sung and that they followed Him out to the Mount of Olives. At this point we get introduced to the second type of Jesus Follower.
The second type of Jesus Follower – nameless and uncommitted
Brother Mark tells us in (v32):
- They went to a place called Gethsemane, and Jesus said to his disciples, “Sit here while I pray.” Mark 14:32
Here then is the instruction most believers hear and why this second type of Jesus Follower is so numerous. Sit here while I pray. Do nothing while others do the heavy lifting. Note the naming of this group is generic and unspecified -without personal connection. This group is comprised of modern day church attenders who herd into service amid the throng and leave without commitment to the mission of Christ (to seek and to save the lost – Luke 19:10). They have no skin in the activities and needs of the Body – they are loath to volunteer (“someone else can work the nursery”). Sit here. Do nothing. At this point Mark turns to identify the third type of Jesus Follower.
The third type of Jesus Follower – those called by name to walk alone with Christ
Jesus calls out James, Peter and John. It is to these three that He reveals His innermost sufferings.
- My soul is deeply grieved to the point of death; remain here and keep watch – Mark 14:34
He speaks to them intimately and their instruction is vastly different from what was given the nameless seat-warmers of the second group. He said not “sit here while I pray” – but “remain (stay, be part of, immerse yourself) and keep watch.” Be into this moment. Grab hold of Me and drink in the power of My Presence. “Keep watch!” Share My burden for the world, and watch and understand more clearly what it is going to take to redeem it. Learn what I must do to bring you into eternal fellowship with Me. Be alert to the insights which accrue to the one who remains in the vicinity of the Living God.
The title of this message is “And they all left Him, and fled.” I conclude on this thought speaking directly to the third type of Jesus Follower – because only those who long for the companionship and connection with Christ will hear those words and grieve their own treachery. Please tune into the video. Lord Bless You as You Go.