I was reading an article by Rick Wood, Editor of Mission Frontiers, Jan-Feb 2017, where he comments that one of the reasons we are not reaching unreached people groups from our “Western culture” is because “in general, we are not equipping disciples to make more disciples generation after generation” (page 4). He is more accurate about this than most are prepared to admit.
Going back to Jesus’ “Great Commission”, His first instruction was to “make disciples of all nations (ethnos or people groups)”. My mind travels back to yesteryear when I was involved in a few evangelistic crusades. It is largely true of these crusades today. Persons accept the message of the gospel, but the disciple-making component is missing. Contrary to the thinking of some, you do not need a building or money to make disciples. All you need is time and a commitment to the Word of God.
Rich Wood goes on to say, “Disciple making must come first as our highest priority. Healthy disciples will go on to form healthy churches” (page 5). It is interesting that Jesus did not instruct His disciples to ‘go plant churches’. I believe that the work of the Spirit in a true disciple will cause them to automatically gravitate toward the collective function of the church. There is a divine multiplication that happens when we do God’s work God’s way. Paul gave this formula to Timothy; “What you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men, who will be able to teach others also.” (2 Timothy 2:2). The formula works! Teachable disciples are “faithful” and will be equipped “to teach others also.”
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