Discipleship 101.5

How Jesus Did It.

Forget WWJD. You don’t have to wonder “what would Jesus would do” when it comes to discipleship. All you have to do is watch and learn. Read the Bible. The Gospels clearly demonstrate how Jesus did discipleship. Don’t forget the fact that two of the Gospel writers were eyewitnesses, Matthew and John. Mark documented Peter’s eyewitness testimony. And Luke? While, Paul was imprisoned in Caesarea, Luke went looking for the testimony of other eyewitnesses who were still alive. What Jesus did concerning the training of His disciples took root in the lives of those who wrote His story.

But what about you and me? Has the 21st Century community of Jesus followers lost sight of what truly biblical disciple-making looks like? In a world where self-improvement programs dominate, the lifeblood of true discipleship has been tainted. The institutional Church's focus on personal growth has steered us away from the core mandate Jesus Himself gave. We need to look no further than Jesus' example, found in the Gospel accounts of His ministry. Would Jesus’ first followers recognize the work of The Discipler in us?

It’s time for a radical shift, a return to the five foundational disciple-making practices demonstrated by Jesus.

1. A disciple of Jesus submits to a leader who teaches him to follow Jesus.
2. A disciple of Jesus studies what He said.
3. A disciple of Jesus practices His lifestyle.
4. A disciple of Jesus adopts His model of ministry.
5. A disciple of Jesus finds and teaches others to do what Jesus has taught them.

This post focuses on the fifth disciple-making practice listed above.

Church leadership has largely fallen into a pattern of training those sitting passively in the pews. We have turned inward, focusing almost exclusively on those who already call themselves Christians.

Did Jesus not command us to "Go... and make disciples"? We must confront this uncomfortable truth - our disciple-making efforts are primarily centered around training each other rather than reaching out to those most in need. Our inward-focused approach keeps us trapped within our comfort zones, hindering any potential for outward-focused cultural transformation. Stop the inbreeding!

Breaking Free from Self-Improvement Programs
It's time to break free from the shackles of self-improvement programs that have infected our reproductive practices. Inbreeding is never good. We must again embrace the radical call to find and teach new disciples outside the four walls of our fellowship fortresses.

Imagine a church actively engaging with those lost, broken, and searching for answers. Imagine a community where each member is responsible for introducing and training those people to follow Jesus.

Catalytic Transformation
By refocusing our efforts on finding and teaching new disciples beyond the four walls of our local meeting places, we become catalysts for cultural transformation in our neighborhoods, the marketplace, and where people relax. We break free from inward-focused growth and step into a realm where lives are transformed, communities are impacted, and nations experience revival.

Now is the time to reevaluate our approach to disciple-making. Let us reclaim the forgotten characteristics of Jesus' disciple-making model and infuse them into every aspect of our lives. Will you step out of your comfort zones, seek out the lost, and teach them to follow Jesus. We have a divine responsibility to lead by example, cultivating a culture of submission and obedience fueled by a passion for finding and teaching new disciples to follow Jesus.

Are you ready for a radical shift - a return to the essence of being a follower of Jesus who seeks out others to show them what walking in Jesus'  footsteps looks like? Disciple Daily exists for this purpose. We are here to help you, your small group, or your local congregation take the next best steps.

Please let us know if we can be of assistance in any way.

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