Why are Christians sometimes called followers or disciples of Jesus?

A disciple is someone who follows another person. Disciples try to become more and more like the person they are following. 

 
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The Bible tells us that the twelve disciples we read about in the Gospels, watched and learnt from Jesus; they tried to live the way he lived and do the things he taught. They wanted to think, feel and live like him. The Bible shows us that the disciples were learners - they were learning to be more like Jesus. Sometimes they got things right and sometimes they got things wrong. 

Christians today are Jesus' disciples too. Like the first disciples they want to live the way Jesus lived and do the things he taught. They want to think, feel and live like him.

On the Day of Pentecost the first disciples began to live more like Jesus than they had ever lived before; they began to think more like him, obey his commands, and more and more they began do the things that Jesus did. 

But why did the disciples become more like Jesus on the Day of Pentecost? 

The Bible teaches that on the Day of Pentecost the disciples were filled with the Holy Spirit. Christians believe that the Holy Spirit is ‘The Helper’, teacher and guide. From that day on the Holy Spirit helped the disciples in a powerful way; he worked in their lives changing them from the inside-out to become more and more like Jesus; to be more peaceful, patient and kind. As the Holy Spirit helped the disciples to become more like Jesus, more and more they are able to live God's way.

Christians believe that the Holy Spirit still helps people today. Christians believe that in the same way the Holy Spirit helped the first disciples he helps them to follow Jesus; to be Jesus' disciples. Christians believe that the Holy Spirit helps, guides and changes people who have said ‘Yes’ to God's love and forgiveness; he changes them from the inside-out to be more like Jesus. Christians believe that each day the Holy Spirit helps millions of people around the world become more and more like Jesus so they can learn and grow to live God’s way, the way God created them to live.

Another way to describe a disciple is ‘‘someone who has said ‘Yes’ to God's love and forgiveness and with the powerful help of the Holy Spirit is learning and growing to be like Jesus’’.