When our loving Lord Jesus was preparing His disciples for His departure, He gave them what would become the great symbol of true discipleship. From Mark chapter three and verses thirteen and fourteen we learn that Jesus called twelve men to be with Him, so that He might send them forth to preach, but preaching was not the truest mark of discipleship. In Luke eleven the disciples came to Jesus and asked Christ to teach them to pray, but prayer was not the tell-all of discipleship.
Jesus said to them in that upper ro0m, By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another (John 13:35). Brotherly love became the mark of true discipleship. Jesus knew that His disciples were going into all the world with the gospel and that message in the eyes of the world would hinge on the treatment of Christians toward one another.
God intended for His children to care for one another and see one another through. If a brother or sister is discouraged or has fallen away, we which are spiritual fulfill the law of Christ and seek to restore them.
A few weeks back we all observed the heroism of the Chilean miners who survived 70 days underground. One of the miners said, “If one was down, the others rallied. Each day a different person took a bad turn. Every time that happened, we worked as a team, to try to keep the morale up. We older ones took care of the younger ones. We knew that if society broke down we would all be doomed. It was important to keep clean, to keep busy, to keep believing we would be rescued. It was important to keep faith.”
Those words apply directly to every local church today. We all have a different role, but we work as a team to rally, encourage and love one another. Do we as Christians have this mark of true discipleship?