It continually amazes me how the Holy Spirit confirms a deep concern on my heart through some conversation or article or just reading the Scriptures in my quiet time. In the last week or two, Tim, Terry and I have been increasingly convinced that there is a serious lack of making disciples in the church. When the gospel is presented to unbelievers and they receive the Lord Jesus as their Savior, we fail to follow this up with the command to “make disciples” (Matthew 28:19). The result is that spiritual stagnation takes place because new believers are not established in the faith.
As I was pondering this critical need, I came across an article by Rick Wood, Editor of Mission Frontiers, Nov./Dec. 2017, page 4, Cutting Loose the Anchors that Keep Us from Movements. “The Church is on the verge of sinking in too many places. Forward progress is often unthinkable — survival is the critical issue…The key is to return to what is truly biblical and empower average people as the royal priesthood that they are to become entrepreneurs of new ministry — living on mission with God to make disciples.”
Paul combined the two essential functions of an evangelist; preach the gospel and make disciples. “When they had preached the gospel to that city [Derby] and had made many disciples, they returned to Lystra and to Iconium and to Antioch” (Acts 14:21). This is the biblical process that creates a movement of God — expansion of church planting. We need to examine our own methods and see if they are truly biblical.
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