The Way of the Master

2 John 1:6 This is love, that we walk according to His commandments. This is the commandment, that as you have heard from the beginning, you should walk in it.”

The way Jesus ministered and worked is worth taking note, the pattern of holiness and perfection He exemplified by His life was the Way of the Master.

As Ruler over His household, Jesus not only commands His people in how to live, He demonstrated it by His life. The way of living like Jesus is never changing because Jesus never changes. The fixed line of Holiness that God demands is one the world not only doesn’t understand but also hates.

John 15:18-19 “If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.”

The world wants to make its own rules, live by their own standard of goodness, and proclaim what is right in their own eyes. Jesus made it very clear that nobody is good, how this world was made by God’s standard and it is His standard of the Moral law by which we are all held.

The way of Jesus is not something that can be comprehensively studied in a short dissertation. The disciples themselves recognized that all Jesus taught and did was far more than than any book could contain.

All that we need to know, we have in God’s Word.

The way God’s Word is expressed is as complex as God is vast.

John 21:25 “Now there are also many other things that Jesus did. Were every one of them to be written, I suppose that the world itself could not contain the books that would be written.”

Jesus exemplified many things, but one of them was the way He shared the gospel.

If we take a short look at how Jesus shared the gospel, we gain insight into how we can follow in His footsteps.

The Gospel Presentation

The ruler who approached Jesus asked what he must do to inherit eternal life. The question he asked was in essence a contradiction, Jesus could have given him a direct answer of how there is nothing he can do to inherit eternal life—but He didn’t.

Luke 18:18-23 “Now a certain ruler asked Him, saying, “Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” So Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God.  You know the commandments: ‘Do not commit adultery,’ ‘Do not murder,’ ‘Do not steal,’ ‘Do not bear false witness,’ ‘Honor your father and your mother.’ ” And he said, “All these things I have kept from my youth.” So when Jesus heard these things, He said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” But when he heard this, he became very sorrowful, for he was very rich.

Jesus first answers his question with a question–“why do you call Me good?” The term of being good is a standard only reserved for God. Since God is the only one who has a nature that is truly good, no man can measure up to this standard. Mankind’s corruption has led him into all forms of sin and therefore his nature has been corrupted from the onset. Jesus’ question was an attempt to ascertain by what means the man was approaching Him, as the Messiah or as a rabbi teacher.

Jesus follows the question with an exclamation by which we can measure ourselves, to see if we have attained eternal life. The Moral Law, or Ten Commandments, is God’s standard of righteousness. Live them perfectly and you qualify on account of the law for entry into God’s standard of perfection. Break one part of the Moral Law and you discredit yourself as a law breaker.

Jesus asked the ruler if he kept all of the commandments. He exclaimed with an air of excitement that he had, then Jesus digs a little further into all he lacked regarding righteousness…..particularly his love of money.

Money had become idolatrous in the man’s life and the condemnation of his materialism over God was one he quickly realized.

What did Jesus do to help the man realize his error?

Jesus pointed him to the law.

The process of evangelism isn’t to share with people how much God loves them, or share all the joy that accompanies a walk with God, or even to promise them God’s blessing if they follow Jesus. Each of these though good, must be accompanied by the conviction of the Spirit of God. If a person’s sole reason for coming to God is for blessing, they come under the wrong pretense.

The seeker friendly methods of evangelism have led many people into a false understanding of what God’s love really looks like.

1 John 4:9 “This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.”

God’s love is expressed through the cross of Christ Jesus.

If you want to Know the love of God, not just experience it through others or taste of it by hanging out with christians, but Know it for yourself, you have to accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior.

Sin separates us from God’s love. Our sin has made us enemies before the throne of God’s judgement and the only way for that to be rectified is to accept the grace that Jesus purchased with His blood.

Ephesians 2:13 “But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.”

Jesus used the law in evangelism because without the knowledge of sin, people do not realize the need for grace.

Luke 10: 25-29 And behold, a certain lawyer stood up and tested Him, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” He said to him, “What is written in the law? What is your reading of it?” So he answered and said, “ ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind,’ and ‘your neighbor as yourself.’ ” And He said to him, “You have answered rightly; do this and you will live.” But he, wanting to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”

Jesus also spoke about the parable of the Good Samaritan and how God’s love expressed does not have limitations. The pure and undefiled love of God can only be expressed through the indwelling Spirit of God in a believers life.

The Moral law in evangelism is the measure of perfection that makes us realize we can never meet God’s holiness on our own.

Since we cannot achieve the holiness of God on our own, the moral law points us to Christ who has become our salvation.

Romans 10:4 “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.”

It is the righteousness (or perfection) of Christ that was imparted to His people, to those who come to Him in repentance and humility. When people recognize their sin through the law, Jesus is exalted since He provided the only reprieve from judgement.

The way of the Master has been the way of disciples and believers for thousands of years. If we walk faithfully in the steps of Jesus, we express truth the way Jesus expressed it to those who walk in darkness.

Keep to Jesus’ pattern of engaging the world using the law and grace and you will see the fruit you always hoped for in evangelism.

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