Follow Me: Learning to Lead through Following Christ
Lesson 6: Impartation for Execution
“No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you (John 15:15).”
“So Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you; as the Father has sent Me. I also send you (John 20:21).”
When the Relationship Changes
Jesus is our Lord, but He desires to be our friend also. This may be hard to grasp, but Jesus wants us to follow Him so closely that our relationship with Him changes. He wants us to become so close to Him that we become His friends.
Read John 15:12-17.
What does this passage reveal about Jesus’ relationship with the disciples?
What produced the change in Jesus’ relationship with the disciples?
How do we experience the same type of intimacy with Jesus?
Jesus reveals five things about His relationship with the disciples in this passage:
1. Jesus loved them and called them to love one another (v. 12, 17)
2. The extent of Jesus’ love would be demonstrated on the cross (v. 13)
3. Friendship with Jesus is determined by following His commandments (v. 14)
4. The evidence of friendship with Jesus is impartation of truth (v. 15)
5. Jesus chose the disciples to be fruit bearers (v. 16)
Jesus’ relationship with the disciples demonstrated true servant leadership. The goal was imparting into them everything needed for success. He did this by loving them, leading them, and teaching them. He showed that they were valued and appreciated by loving them as friends (equals). Servant leaders value and appreciate those they lead. They do not view those they lead as subordinate, but as co-laborers (equals).
What does it mean to be Jesus’ friend? What does it mean to be a co-laborer with Christ?
Execution Requires Impartation
Jesus relationship with the disciples began changing when He called them friends. It continued changing until He finally imparted to them the power needed to fulfill their assignment. One way of valuing and appreciating those who are led, is by giving them the resources needed to complete their assignment.
In John 20:19-29 Jesus gives the disciples what they would need to finish the work to which they were called.
What did Jesus give the disciples so that they could finish the work to which they were called?
How was Thomas treated differently?
What lessons can we learn from Jesus’ encounter with the disciples in this passage?
Jesus knew the assignment He gave the disciples was vitally important. In fact, the kingdom depended on their success. Failure was not an option. Jesus imparted to them what they needed for success.
· He released peace to them (v. 19, 26)
· He gave them tangible evidence of the truth of their message (v. 20, 27)
· He gave them clarity concerning their assignment (v. 21)
· He imparted His spirit into them (v. 22)
· He gave them authority to function in their calling (v. 23)
· He imparted to them a vision for future believers (v. 29)
In the same way, Jesus imparts to us what we need for success. By doing so, we are shown that Jesus values and appreciates us. He calls us friends. He gives us His Spirit. He provides the peace we need. Jesus also gives us tangible evidence of the truth of the gospel through transformed lives. Finally, He gives us authority to function in our calling.
Just as Jesus imparted to the disciples and us what is needed for success, servant leaders impart to those they lead what is needed for success. In doing so, value and appreciation is shown.