MaxRon Discussions: Talmidim [Students/Disciples]–– Teaching Disciples in the Way of the Lord
In the Shema besides the declaration in the One true and living Elohim/GOD, the text in Deuteronomy 6:
1 These are the commands, decrees and laws the LORD your God directed me to teach you to observe in the land that you are crossing the Jordan to possess, 2 so that you, your children and their children after them may fear the LORD your God as long as you live by keeping all his decrees and commands that I give you, and so that you may enjoy long life. 3 Hear, O Israel, and be careful to obey so that it may go well with you and that you may increase greatly in a land flowing with milk and honey, just as the LORD, the God of your fathers, promised you. 4 Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one.  5 Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. 6 These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. 7 Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 8 Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. 9 Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates. One of the single
1 Thessalonians 1:4-7
New International Version
4 For we know, brothers and sisters[a] loved by God, that he has chosen you, 5 because our gospel came to you not simply with words but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and deep conviction. You know how we lived among you for your sake. 6 You became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you welcomed the message in the midst of severe suffering with the joy given by the Holy Spirit. 7 And so you became a model to all the believers in Macedonia and Achaia.
In the Pirke Avot When Jewish rabbis are ordained, they are commissioned to “Raise up many disciples.”. This is the first verse of Pirke Avot (Wisdom of the Fathers), from the Mishnah, the Jewish compendium of laws and sayings from around Jesus’ time. Texts like this have much to say about the rabbinic method for raising disciples.
An integral part early Second and Post Second Temple Judaism was to make disciples––this was carried through into the Messianic faith by their leaders. They followed Yeshua’s example of calling others to follow him and embrace his teaching.
Ephesians 5.1 English Revised Version
Be ye therefore imitators of God, as beloved children;
- someone who copies the behaviour or actions of another.
- An imitator is therefore someone who carefully pays attention to the character and actions of someone else and reproduces it attempting to make it as authentic as possible. Of course you can get a poor imitation that is nothing like the original and is a fake.
God’s pattern of discipleship has not altered throughout the ages. Rav Shaul/Apostle Paul exhorts those who listened to him and the other Messianic leaders to do likewise: Aramaic Bible in Plain English––1 Corinthians 11:1
“Imitate me just as I also do The Messiah.” This raises an interesting concept of becoming “imitators.” Thomas a’Kempis classic The Imitation of Christ is an early discipleship devotional manual for believers to use as an aid to their devotional life.
Symbolism and metaphor of the Shepherd and His sheep is built into the biblical narrative…God is the one who pastures and cares for his sheep––Psalm 23– David, the Shepherd King asked, “What is God like?” Answer: “The Lord is my Shepherd.”
So, discipleship involves the following:
- Putting into practice what we have learnt
- Innovation according to the pattern – Moses onwards was instructed by God to follow the pattern given on the Mountain…
- How are we to put into practice the things we have learned––Talk and Walk:
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