Matthew 5:1 And seeing the multitudes, He (Jesus) went up on a mountain, and when He was seated His disciples came to Him. Then He opened His mouth and taught them…
Up to this point in His ministry, Jesus had not done much teaching. Rather, He was in the role of evangelist, calling on people to repent for the Kingdom was at hand. He also healed and delivered many, establishing Himself in His ministry.
Multitudes of people followed Him from all over the region (Matthew 4:25). But many of these “followers” only did so because of the miracles He performed when He was in the cities. They were chasing the signs and wonders, as Jesus accused several times throughout His ministry.
So, Jesus left the city and went up on a mountain, and the real disciples came to Him. He went somewhere inconvenient. Climbing even a gentle-sloped mountain takes some effort and time. There would not be a show to watch out in the middle of nowhere, so many would not bother going after Him up a mountain.
Others, however, wanted to see what He would say, and so followed Him. His disciples came to Him….
Christ does not call us to follow Him only when it is convenient, or when there is something exciting to watch. The path to His Kingdom being revealed to and in us takes some diligence on our part. And this is the only way to establish ourselves in the faith and to begin to grow to maturity.
Jesus went up a mountain. He left the hustle and bustle of the busy city. The disciples put aside their busy lives to follow Him up that mountain, to see what He would teach. And because they followed Him, He taught them – and the people were astonished at His teaching (Matthew 7:28-29).
Matthew 8:1 When He had come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed Him.
Will you be an easy-believism follower, who only cares about the miracles, about getting your way with God? So many in the church today are like this multitude, who follow after Him when it is convenient, when it doesn’t interfere with their daily lives. It is so easy to fall into this trap, and think that He is happy we are following Him. But the true disciple goes up the mountain after Him.
Do you really want to learn from Jesus? Do you really want to hear from God Himself, to be a disciple, a student, of Christ? I guarantee that it will, at times, be inconvenient. It will also take some diligence and effort on your part to go after Christ. But He promises that it will be worth it!