Discipleship: the process of helping others move from UNBELIEF to BELIEF, in the gospel, in every area of life! (Romans 14:23; Colossians 2:6-7)
The Great Commandment and the Great Commission
The Great Commandment: God’s love compels us to be on His mission!
28 And one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he answered them well, asked him, "Which commandment is the most important of all?" 29 Jesus answered, "The most important is, 'Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 30 And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.' 31 The second is this: 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no other commandment greater than these." 32 And the scribe said to him, "You are right, Teacher. You have truly said that he is one, and there is no other besides him. 33 And to love him with all the heart and with all the understanding and with all the strength, and to love one's neighbor as oneself, is much more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices." 34 And when Jesus saw that he answered wisely, he said to him, "You are not far from the kingdom of God." And after that no one dared to ask him any more questions. (Mark 12:28-34 ESV)
The Great Commission: Our individual live's and church mission from Jesus!
18 And Jesus came and said to them, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age." (Matthew 28:18-20 ESV)
What is a disciple?
Disciple: a lifelong apprentice of Jesus who, in community, is with Jesus, becomes like Jesus, does what Jesus did and helps others do the same!
How do we make disciples?
Disciple-making: In our everyday rhythms, we help others move from unbelief to belief in the gospel in every area of life and then help them live that out. (Romans 10:14; John 8:31-32)
It’s the intentional process of being in community and investing in relationships to help others to increasingly submit fully to Jesus in all areas of their life. Not to get people to merely do “church things,” but help them know, believe and live in light of the gospel as the Good News seeps into every aspect of life.
Disciple-making includes the whole process from a not-yet-Christian coming to salvation through faith in Christ through spiritual maturation (sanctification) and then repeating the process--multiplication. It’s the ongoing gospeling of our hearts for a lifetime!
Our strategy and process for making disciples can be described in 5 parts:
1) Prayer and fasting-regular & continuous, dependent, fervent, specific
2) Relationships-intentional, sacrificial, consistent investment, takes time
3) Epic’s 5-Step Discipleship Pathway-everyone on it and moving forward. For more info go here:
Connect-->Serve together-->Choose Community→Believe & Surrender to Jesus-->Go and Make Disciples
4) **Everyone choosing to be PART of or LEADING one of our 3 Disciple-making environments:
Missional Community (MC)
DNA Group (discover, nurture, act)
5) Trust God to build His Church (Mt 16:18; Acts 2:39) and to make people more like Jesus (Ro 8:28-29; 1Co 3:6-7)
Other contributors to making disciple-makers: life experiences, personal spiritual disciples (Habits of Grace), Sunday gatherings-preaching of the Word, serving, mission trips, formal learning (classes, seminars, conferences, formal education), self-learning (articles, podcasts, webinars).