EMP 2023 Day 2: Danny Kim

Discipleship

Hi everyone, and welcome to the second day of EMP. I am thankful for the opportunity to speak in front of all of you today. PD reached out to me last week, on a Tuesday, and asked if I could do a sermon for one of the days of EMP, and of course, I said, yes, right away. He said that since it’s the new year, try to prepare something that can be a little motivating, and I said, ok, will do. It’s always easy to say yes to these things but as soon as I got off the phone, I was thinking, “man, what am I going to talk about?”. So, I thought and prayed about it, but the more I thought about it, I couldn’t pick a topic. Then, I just thought I should talk about something I needed to do better in 2023, maybe something we all could maybe do better in 2023 as followers of Jesus Christ, Discipleship.

Jesus’s disciples pretty much left everything to follow him. They followed him and learned everything they could from him for 3 years. They experienced lows, highs, and miracles together with Him, as they discovered what it meant to follow their Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

When Jesus told his disciples, told us, to go make disciples of all nations, he didn’t mean for it to be for us to do it whenever we had time, after this promotion we are waiting to get, or after this assignment I need to get done, he meant it to be a primary focus for us as followers of Him. It means that if the opportunity presents itself, we need to put the promotion or assignment to the backburner so that we can do our part in making disciples of Jesus Christ.

Let’s read today’s bible verses. These are verses that are near and dear to my heart and verses that we should all be familiar with here at ANF.

Matthew 28: 18-20

18 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” AMEN

These verses, these instructions that have been passed on to us, are known as the “Great Commission” because it represents a significant responsibility for us as followers of Jesus Christ as we await his return.

And these verses also teach us about discipleship, which is what I wanted to talk about today in 4 points mentioned in these verses,

1. Go,

2. Make Disciples of all nations,

3. Baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,

4. Teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.

First is Go,

I talked about Going in one of my previous testimonies. Going is the first step to making disciples of Jesus Christ. But disciple making is not a passive activity because it requires intentional thought, effort, and actions. Nobody’s ever going to come to us and ask us to become disciples of Jesus Christ, I wish it was that easy. It takes an intentional effort from all of us because Jesus Christ didn’t just tell the missionaries, the outgoing people to go, he told all of us to go. In whatever situation or surrounding we are in; we need to be situationally aware of the non-believers around us and don’t waste an opportunity to talk to them. For me now, as a parent, not going to lie, it has gotten a litttle easier because of my son. We would go to a park and my son would hang out with another kid, and we get to talking with their parents, exchange numbers, ect. We have connected with non-believers like this that are actually coming to this church. But I know me, and my wife can do a lot more, a lot better, I know we all can do better. Let’s not be shy when the opportunity presents itself and let’s get out of our comfort zones to go for Jesus Christ, its ok if we get rejected 99 times because it will be worth it if we just get 1. It’s not just the calling of people who are good at it, it’s a calling for all of us followers of Jesus Christ.

Next is to make disciples of all nations,

This is our Receiving Jesus Meeting, RJM, and when Pastor Daniel meets with a particular person to share the gospel with them. I think we sometimes take this lightly and I don’t know why. I don’t like it either. Maybe it’s because it’s just something we hear on announcements or see on our monthly calendar, but RJM should in no way be taking lightly. This is a time where PD shares the gospel with someone, and they have the decision to make on whether they want to open the door to their hearts to let Jesus Christ in and let Him be the Lord and Savior of their lives. If they accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, it means they are reborn again and that they are committing their lives to Jesus Christ. They become a disciple of Jesus Christ and it’s a pretty big deal. I remember when I first accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and savior and it was a very special moment for me. I know someone who did RJM kind of recently who came out very emotional and had tears in their eyes because they accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior and I was so happy I was there to hug and congratulate that person, it was a beautiful moment. Not that I cry often but I even teared up. But this is what its all about as a Christian for me, to be able to see a fellow brother or sister accept Jesus Christ in their lives should be right up there with the most fulfilling experiences we receive as a follower of Jesus Christ.

So my thing is, I don’t think we are supporting and praying enough during RJM. I think we all need to challenge ourselves a little more in 2023 to be present and with them in the same building if one of your HC Members are in RJM. Show up, pray for them during, have fellowship during, and be there for them when they get out, congratulate, or tell them it’s all good, let them know that you are there for them no matter what the outcome is. Because it could mean the world to them, and we want them to start their re-born again lives out with love and support from their HC members.

Now Baptizing,

Baptism is something we do to celebrate together, a public affirmation that our sins have been washed away by the blood of Jesus Christ and we now have a desire to follow Him and, in a way, asking our brothers and sisters to help us along the way. It’s a great celebration and I still remember my baptism like it was yesterday. I was so thankful for the opportunity to have a second chance at life. I was so emotional and cried out throughout a good portion of my testimony. It was truly a special experience to share my testimony, and the feeling of being a new man after my sins have been washed away after being immerged in the water. It’s not when I was saved but it’s when I felt the emotions of being born again. Very special day for me. I hope that we can do our part and Go, and make disciples, so that we can experience many of our fellow brothers and sisters experience this special celebration in 2023.

Lastly, I wanted to talk about the part that says, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. This is perhaps the most important part but something we tend to fall short on at times.

We think, ok, they have accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, they got baptized, were done, ok, let’s try to reach out to other non-believers and we leave the new, baby follower of Jesus Christ to figure things out for themselves. This is something I and we all need to get better in because it doesn’t stop with baptism, it’s a continuous effort that goes beyond that. New baby Christians need our continued support so that they can grow in their faith as new disciples of Jesus Christ.

I’m not saying we need to try to teach with our words and always try to correct them because making disciples goes beyond just teaching facts about Jesus Christ. Also, you trying to teach with your words means nothing and has no value if you don’t model your life after Jesus Christ. It means we need teach people how to know and be like Jesus. We need to model discipleship.

I can proudly say that I have great spiritual leaders in Pastor Daniel and Sunmi. I would not be the disciple of Jesus Christ I am today if it wasn’t for their teachings, mentoring, but most importantly, their modeling of Christ throughout the way they live their lives. Because I wouldn’t have listened to them if I didn’t see it clearly with my own eyes. They were my HC shepherds when I first came to ROCK church, and they modeled their lives in a way that I thought was just so crazy at first because they would always be sacrificing their time, effort, and money to serve others. But I later realized that they didn’t model their lives in a crazy way, they modeled their lives after Jesus Christ.

I remember one time, I read the 4 gospels of the New Testament and I was tripping. I thought to myself, I am pretty sure I just read the same thing 4 times in a row. So, I called Pastor Daniel and was like, Pastor Daniel, why do the 4 Gospels all tell the same story? I am pretty sure he laughed inside his head, but he didn’t to me. He was very patient and explained everything to me and I was thankful. He was always available to answer my stupid questions.

They both taught me how to know and try to live my life to be like Jesus and that’s exactly what we need to do for others. Its now time for me and others to step up and do better in modeling discipleship to others because PD can’t do it by himself anymore. I know he would like too but we have just grown so much that he can’t give the same attention and care to each and every one of us anymore, we all need to step up and accept our responsibility and calling as a follower of Jesus Christ to help model what a true disciple of Christ is in our everyday lives, be set apart from the worldly views.

Here of some examples of things I have learned from Pastor Daniel and Sunmi throughout the years,

I occasionally drink at home with my wife, but I would never drink with anyone here at ANF. Its not that I don’t like you guys and don’t want to drink with you, but I don’t ever want to have a drink and say or do anything in front of you to make you stumble or cause you to drift away in the slightest from Jesus Christ. This is something I heard from Pastor Daniel a long time ago when I first became a Christian and it has just always stuck with me.

I also do my best to be available at HC and Sunday service every week because it it’s a priority for me and my family and this is also something I learned from Pastor Daniel and Sunmi by observing them throughout all these years. I remember Sunmi mentioning to me one time that she would rather have her kids miss school than to miss church and it just had a huge impact on me.

I learned how to pray, how to tithe, how to serve, be a member of the church, do communion, essentially, I learned how to become a true follower of Jesus through observing them for all of these years. I don’t know where I would be now if Pastor Daniel and Sunmi didn’t serve me as a HC member and share the gospel with me. I am so thankful for them for not only bringing me to Jesus Christ, but also teaching me how to become a follower of Him.

I have had the privilege to have great spiritual leaders that have continued to teach me as their spiritual son throughout all these years. They didn’t only teach by mouth but also taught by actions and the way they modeled their lives and that’s how what they taught me with their mouths held weight with me.

I am not that knowledgeable yet with the bible so I don’t think I can teach much with my mouth, but I do think I can do my best to try to model my life the best I can as a follower of Jesus Christ to help model discipleship to others.

Lets read the Matthew 28: 18-20 again

18 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” AMEN

This is our calling; this is our mission and its not something we are supposed to squeeze in whenever we have time in between the worldly things we are doing. It doesn’t mean to do it after you get off work, or after you play with your son, or after you take this exam. This calling should be our primary focus so that we can drop whatever worldly task we are doing at the time to go reach out to a non-believer whenever the opportunity presents itself.

We just need to realize more in 2023 that it goes beyond our selfish needs, and that we have a responsibility like how verse 20 says, “teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you”, to continue to model discipleship for years beyond a HC member getting baptized, modeling discipleship for however long it takes.

Don’t miss an opportunity to go and talk to a non-believer, don’t miss an opportunity to celebrate a fellow brother or sister accepting Jesus Christ as their Lord and savior after RJM, don’t miss an opportunity to celebrate a Baptism together as a body of Christ, and lets please not miss an opportunity to continue to help our brothers and sisters grow more in their Faith by modeling discipleship through mentoring, teaching, and the way we live our lives as a follower of Jesus Christ.

Thank you