I would like to start out this month asking a few specific questions. What type of impact is your church or fellowship having on your community? As a minister or ministry leader, what is your impact on those around you? It has become very evident over the past few years that we truly are living in a post Christian culture. Since that has become evident, what are we doing to combat that? Many of you know that the definition of insanity is continuing to do the same thing over and over while expecting different results. If we continue doing things the way we’ve done in the past, we are going to continue to see our society and culture slide further and further away from the Almighty.
I’ve been writing over the past few months about discipleship, and how I believe this is the real answer to combating our post Christian culture. I also believe that the body as a whole is doing a tremendously terrible job making disciples. Christians, as well as commandment keeping fellowships have excelled at making converts and producing flavorful denominations, but as a whole, we aren’t batting a 100 when it comes to raising up the next generation.
Last month I talked about three areas in order to start making disciples. The first area is making a plan and sticking to that plan. The second is time management, and the third is investing in the right people. This month I would like to continue looking at disciple making.
The next area is probably the most critical area in making disciples. That area is declaration and demonstration of the gospel. In my opinion, one of the reasons we are seeing so many people renounce their faith, not share the gospel, and not becoming disciples who reproduce other disciples is due to a lack of demonstration of the gospel. Those who are making disciples understand the importance in being able to demonstrate what they are declaring. I like to refer to it as the proof in the pudding moment, where it’s real and can be experienced. Declaration and demonstration go hand in hand, and the book of Acts shows us that the disciples of Y’shua walked in both of these.
While transferring knowledge is an important aspect of our faith, that isn’t the end game in sharing the gospel. When we can demonstrate the gospel, it becomes something that can be experienced by touch and taste. Showing others how to demonstrate the gospel is a huge component of discipleship and the apostles had this one down.
for our gospel didn’t not come to you in word only, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction; 1 Thessalonians 1:5
Discipleship isn’t a rigid 5 step program which upon completion the person becomes an expert. It is something that must be developed into a rhythm where we are spending time in the word and time in prayer in order to become more like Y’shua. This is how we spiritually exercise. This exercising trains us for the demonstration of the gospel. The more we exercise and train, the greater rhythm we come into as we are filling ourselves with His word and presence in order to be a witness for Him. Getting into a rhythm in disciple making breaks the limitations of a 5 step program and brings about success.
This stage in the disciple making process is one of the most important. It is a stage where a lot of work is required. Prayer and study of God’s Word require discipline and effort and many people aren’t willing to put in the necessary time. Putting in time isn’t fun or entertaining for our flesh.
Let’s face it, as a whole, who likes to exercise? What happens once we begin to exercise and continue exercising? We start to form a rhythm and pattern that success can be built upon. Soon after a few short months of our training, we are so much further along than where we started. This builds confidence and solidifies our faith because it is the place that teaches you and me how to truly declare the gospel through demonstration. We will positively impact and transform our communities once we become disciples who reproduce other disciples that go forth declaring and demonstrating the power of the gospel. Blessings and my the God of Israel keep you and your families.