If you want to know how to become a follower of Jesus, the Holy Spirit is already at work in your life. He is stirring your heart and revealing truth to you.
Who Is Jesus Anyway?
To become a follower of Jesus, you need to know who Jesus is and who He isn’t. Without this revelation and understanding, there is no foundation for truth or trust in anything He did or said.
Knowing His identity is essential if you want to become a follower of Jesus.
What Jesus Wasn’t…
Most people have heard of Jesus, but they don’t know much about Him. They might tell you He was a…
- Good and godly man
C.S. Lewis wrote this in his book Mere Christianity…
- “I am trying here to prevent anyone from saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him [Jesus Christ]: ‘I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept his claim to be God.’ That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic—on a level with a man who says he is a poached egg—or else he would be the Devil of hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon; or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God. But let us not come up with any patronizing nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He has not left that option open to us. He did not intend to.” (emphasis added)
Jesus was not just a prophet, teacher, or good man. We must make a choice: Is He the Son of the One True God, or was He a mad man?
Jesus Said, “I Am”
In Hebrew, “I Am” is Yahweh. This is the name of God in the Old Testament. The present tense of the name proclaims the never-changing nature of God. In Exodus 3, when God gave Moses the mission of delivering His people out of slavery in Egypt, Moses asked, “What is His name?” He was asking God, “Who do I tell the people it was who sent me?”
God replied, “I AM WHO I AM… (tell them) I AM has sent me to you.” This statement of His holy name means He is…
- Above all
- The source and creator of all
Jesus’ 7 “I Am” Statements
- “I am the bread of life.”
“I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.”—John 6:35
This statement reveals a spiritual reality. When you become a follower of Jesus—to receive Him and believe in Him—your spiritual hunger and thirst are satisfied. Your focus is no longer on earthly things but on heavenly things. You begin to see what could not be seen before (see 2 Corinthians 4:18).
- “I am the light of the world.”
“Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, ‘I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.’”—John 8:12
This statement reveals how Jesus contrasts the darkness of sin and evil in the world. He lights the path for you (Psalm 119:115) so that you know the way to go. The Light shows you how to become a follower of Jesus.
- “I am the door.”
“I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.”—John 10:9
This statement reveals how Jesus is the door to salvation. He is the only legitimate way to gain entry to heaven. No man-made rules or regulations can give you access. When you become a follower of Jesus, you have legitimate access to God.
- “I am the good shepherd.”
“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.”—John 10:11
This statement reveals how Jesus lays down His life for us. A shepherd might take risks for his flock, but he likely wouldn’t lay down his life unless he was truly “good.” Because only God is good (Mark 10:18), Jesus was saying He was God and would fully protect His sheep to His death.
- “I am the resurrection and the life.”
“I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live.”—John 11:25
This statement revealed that Jesus is the resurrection and the life—not that He had it or understood it. When you become a follower of Jesus, you know and receive resurrection and life. Once dead in your sin, you are made alive in Christ.
- “I am the way , the truth, and the life.”
“I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”—John 14:6
This statement echoes others that reveal how Jesus is the only way to heaven and eternal life. He didn’t say He would show us the way, but rather He is the way. To know Jesus as His follower is to be in the way, truth, and life.
- “I am the vine.”
“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.”—John 15:5
This statement reveals that Jesus is your source of life. To become a follower of Jesus means that you are rooted in Him. Your identity is in no one else—not in a calling or in the Church—it is in Him. Jesus’ teaching tells us that we are to be constantly connected to and completely dependent on Him.
Become a Follower of Jesus
- First, admit you are a sinner.
Romans 3:23 says, “for all have sinned and fall short from the glory of God.” No “good deeds” outweigh the bad we’ve done. God requires perfection, and we are not perfect. Understanding the gap—the separation between God and us—gives insight into why you need a perfect Savior.
The Bible says that no one is innocent. If we’ve sinned even once, we have fallen short of the glory of God.
Romans 6:23 says, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Our sin deserves death, and eternal separation from God.
- Second, repent for your sin.
Repentance means “turn” in Hebrew. Repenting for your sin means turning from old ways of living and turning to God. You are no longer hiding but are humbly and honestly coming before Him, agreeing with Him about the subject of sin. When you decide to become a follower of Jesus, you receive His gift of salvation and make Him ruler in your life. This doesn’t mean you won’t ever sin again, but rather you are mindful and aware of sin and won’t be complacent about it.
- Third, believe Jesus is the Son of God and was raised from the dead.
Romans 6:23 has both good news and bad news. Sin is costly (bad news), but God gives eternal life to you as a gift (good news) through Jesus! Romans 5:8 says, “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
Romans 10:9 says, “that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.”
You don’t have to know all the answers to become a follower of Jesus. You simply admit you have sinned, repent, confess who Jesus is, and believe He was raised from the dead.
You don’t have to get “cleaned up” to become a follower of Jesus either. Jesus is the one who cleans you. It is God’s pleasure to redeem and purify you. Titus 2:14 says, “[Jesus] who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from all lawlessness and might purify to Himself a people specially chosen, zealous of good works.”
Putting It All Together…
Ephesians 2:8-9 says, “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.”
God wants you to know that salvation is…
- By grace alone
- Through faith alone
- In Jesus alone
As you become a follower of Jesus, confess your faith in Him to others! This fulfills the Great Commission—which is to spread the good news of Jesus to every nation. Do you want to know more about how to become a follower of Jesus or how to grow in your faith? Take the next step in your faith journey. God has great plans for you! Grow in your faith and discover more about who you are in Christ and His plans for you.