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What is the difference between a disciple and a follower?

Discussion in 'Non-denominational' started by Hishandmaiden, Feb 25, 2002.

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  1. Hishandmaiden

    Hishandmaiden The Humble Servant

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    I read a commentary that said that Jesus have 12 disciples and 70 followers.
    My question is, what is the difference between a disciple and a follower?
     
  2. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth New Member

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    Hmm..good question. Maybe one studies one doesn't? i would compare and contrast the disciples with people that just heard Jesus talk.
     
  3. solo66 man

    solo66 man New Member

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    It seems to me that followers are just that. Kind of like following a football team.
    Whereas a disciple is chosen to be on the team. It is a much tougher road though. The follower is expected to do nothing. The disciple is expected to lose his life and be crucified with Jesus,
    even to the point of suffering as He did.

    As Dietrich Bonhoeffer put it,

    "It is costly because it costs a man his life, and it is grace because it gives a man the only true life."
     
  4. Optimus_P

    Optimus_P Super Umpa Lumpa

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    i think solo is on the right track. Altho we should all try to spread the word not everyone does.

    Those who just listen are followers, those who proactivly teach and preach i think would be the disciple.
     
  5. JohnR7

    JohnR7 Well-Known Member

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    >>My question is, what is the difference between a disciple and a follower?

    I think what your looking for is the difference between a disciple and a apostle. The difference is one of commission and the power they are given.

    Today a apostle would be called a Bishop or lovingly they are called a pastors pastor. They ultimately are responsable that proper doctorine is set forth. They not only have authority over the pastors, but also the prophets and all other gifts. To see to it that the use of the gifts line up with God and the word of God.
     
  6. StogusMaximus

    StogusMaximus New Member

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    Definitions:

    Follower - One who subscribes to the teachings or methods of another
    Disciple - One who embraces and assists in spreading the teachings of another.
    Apostle - One of a group made up especially of the 12 disciples chosen by Jesus to preach the gospel.

    Any body who accepts Jesus as Savior is a follower, any follower who spreads the Word is a Disciple and 12 disciples became Apostles.

    Please study this, it will be on the SAT.
     
  7. filosofer

    filosofer Senior Veteran

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  8. zamar

    zamar New Member

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    I disagree with JohnR7 concerning Apostles.

    An Apostle is by definition, a sent one. They are sent out and are Church Planters. They establish a new work turn it over to a Pastor and go start another church.

    A modern Apostle is not a Bishop, it is more closly tied to Missionaries.

    Z
     
  9. zamar

    zamar New Member

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    Now concerning the difference between followers and disciples. A follower is a follower, a disciple is a disciplined one. One who is seeking a deeper relationship and knowledge of God.

    We should all be moving from the realm of following and into the realm of descipleship.

    Z
     
  10. el44

    el44 New Member

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    Disciple=Doesn't disciple denote disipline?
    If it does,then a disciple would be one who disiplined himself to the doctrine of the Jesus.

    I've never really thought about the followers but purhaps they have not entered the above,and although they believe may not want ,or have not added any personal disipline based on Jesus teachings to their lives,so are naturally not disciples.
    I imagine these people are of many different growths in their walk but are not of the listed 12 so are called followers.I'd always thought there could have been many disciples but the 12 disciples always where perrhaps the first and walked with Jesus.
    When Jesus sent out the 70.............I see them as disciples because they where certainly not just followers.
     
  11. Mandy

    Mandy New Member

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    Well, Jesus said, "deny yourself, pick up your cross and follow Me."
    Disciples are those learning under the instruction of a teacher, so I am not sure there is much difference. Or perhaps follower was meant in a physical sense. I think it depends on the sense in which follower is used. Am I making any sense? :D

    I must say though that I don't believe that follower is a derogatory term.

    I think all Christians are followers of Christ and we all should be under His teaching (disciples).
     
  12. RayNay714

    RayNay714 Worshiper and Seeker

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    I think that the difference between a disciple and a follower is the same difference as that between a friend and an aquaintance. The followers believed in Jesus, and followed his words, but the disciples were the ones whom Jesus spent the majority of his time with. That is how I feel. Maybe I am wrong, but I think its a pretty good analogy.
     
  13. Hishandmaiden

    Hishandmaiden The Humble Servant

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    Hmm....what an interesting debate. I do have a bit of an idea of a disciple and a follower. But, I ask a question, again. Does it matter? If you follow Jesus with all your heart, and walked in his ways, and do what pleases God, I suppose it dosn't matter if you are called apostles, disciples, or followers. Feel free to disagree with me!
     
  14. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth New Member

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    filo...spellilng..oh..you mean the actual words..for awhile I was worried... ;)
     
  15. Hishandmaiden

    Hishandmaiden The Humble Servant

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  16. hasbeens2000

    hasbeens2000 New Member

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    If you look at the Gospels, you'll notice several times when Jesus was preaching and drew a crowd, then separated Himself from the crowd somehow, and only a few people followed Him. Once or twice He went up a hill, and a handful followed Him. Once he went across a lake, and a few followed Him. In essence, I think the main difference is the level of commitment.

    The book, "Experiencing Spritual Breakthroughs" speaks of 1st, 2nd, and 3rd chair Christians. It describes 1st chair Christians as fully devoted followers of Jesus. These are people who have given their lives to Jesus and are walking with Him 24/7. These I would consider 'disciples'.

    As the book describes them, 2nd chair Christians are what I call "Sunday Morning Christians". These people are in church every Sunday, and know everyone there, but as soon as Monday rolls around, they revert back to their own way. These might be what I would consider 'followers'.

    The reason, I think, Jesus wants us to be 'disciples' is because discipleship is where His blessings are abundant, and our lives are lived to the fullest--just as He intended (John 10:10).
     
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