Picture yourself being in a church community where the leadership is less focused on method and more focused on obedience to the message. A community whose leadership cares more about one’s walk with Christ than one’s work for Christ. Picture a church where the leadership is using its time and energy to pour into “you” instead of the next technique or the next program. A church where making disciples is not one of the things it does but THE thing it does.
The church I have just described above is a church that takes to heart the command to make disciples – committed followers of Jesus Christ! A community where the people are the program, lives are being transformed, and a love for Christ and one another is the attraction. A church that views evangelism as calling people to forsake their sin (repentance) and follow Christ (trust). A community where the gospel is for the believer as well as the unbeliever and where people are on a lifelong journey of learning to love obedience to Christ. Is it possible? Yes! But even more so, it’s biblical.
Making disciples is about quality not quantity. It’s not accomplished through mass productions but in personal settings. Making disciples is intentional. It is doctrinal (word of God), it’s personal (character) and relational (loving one another). And it is best modeled by the One who commanded it – Jesus (to His disciples).
Making disciples is to be perpetuated from one person to another. Paul charged Timothy in 2 Timothy 2:2, “The things which you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, entrust these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.” Paul is teaching Timothy that making disciples involves imitation and reduplication.
Making disciples is also generational. In chapter 2 of Titus, Paul encourages older men and women to be an example to younger men and women by speaking the “things fitting for sound doctrine” and by being an “example of good deeds” so that the word of God would be honored. In short, making disciples is about the joy of “putting on” Christ!
Thus, making disciples is the main work of the local church. A community where God’s children are being transformed into the image of the One who purchased them with His own blood. And because our community exists because of Him and for Him, making disciples is not one of the things we do, it is THE thing we do!