"Go and Make Disciples"
"We must tell others how to tell others about Christ. It is not enough to win converts to Christianity. We must win disciples, who in turn, learn to be disciple-makers." From: Extreme Devotion - W Publishing Group, The Voice of the Martyrs
Many of you are converts to Christianity but you are not Disciples of Christ.
What is a Disciple of Christ?
In Matthew 28:16-20, Jesus commands us to "Go and make disciples of all nations." What does that mean? What is a disciple? What does it mean to be a disciple? How do we make disciples?
A disciple is:
1) From Merriam-Webster's New Collegiate Dictionary:
a) From the late Latin: discipulus; follower of Jesus Christ in his lifetime, from Latin, pupil
(1) One who accepts and assists in spreading the doctrines of another as:
(a) One of the twelve in the inner circle of Christ's followers according to the Gospel accounts
(b) A convinced adherent of a school or individual
2) From the Scripture: John 10:14-16 (NIV)
a) A disciple is one who knows the Voice of Christ
"I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me-just as the Father knows me and I know the Father-and I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd."
3) From William Barclay in The Adventure of Discipling Others
"The word we have translated to be a disciple includes so much that is beyond translation in any single English word. It is the Greek parakolouthein and literally means to follow alongside, but it is used with a magnificent width of meaning. It means to follow a person physically, to stick by him through thick and thin. It means to follow a person mentally, to attend diligently to his teaching and fully to understand the meaning of what he says. It means to follow a person spiritually, not only to understand what he says, but also to carry out his ideas and be the kind of person he wishes us to be. Parakolouthein is indeed the word for disciple, for it includes the unwavering loyalty of a true comrade, the full understanding of a full scholar, and the complete obedience of a dedicated servant." (pgs 74-75)
To be a disciple is to be more than just a follower. It is to:
1) Be loyal without wavering
2) Fully understand the teachings of Christ
3) Be a completely obedient and dedicated servant
How do we make disciples? II Timothy 2:1-2
You then, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable men who will also be qualified to teach others.
1) We make disciples by investing our lives into their lives.
2) We make disciples by developing relationships
3) We make disciples by teaching them what others have taught us and living before them what others have lived before us.