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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Thoughts on Discipleship

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So my church is now doing a Conference that we are calling "Driven to Purpose" and all systems of the church were asked to write and article that would be published in the conference workbook called "The Accelerator".  Thought I would share that article on this blog.  Now I have a real published piece lol not a Journal but this will have to do *smile.

By the way I didn't mention what system I direct.  It is called Assimilation System.  What is that you may ask?


Noun
1. as-sim-i-la-tion

 - the state of being assimilated; people of different backgrounds come to see themselves as part of a larger national family

Simply put Assimilation is the process of taking 1st time guest of our church and guiding them through the processes of the body so that they can become apart of the Core.  The Core meaning fully functioning believers who are maturing in the things of God.  The more "churchy" or theologically correct term would be Discipleship.  My thought is that we have become so good at doing church that we have forgotten or slighted the understanding that we are called to be a disciples or followers of Christ. In other words:

"Discipleship is less about what we do and more about who we become" Pastor J. Mario Moxey.  

So here is my article on Discipleship.  Tell what you think.  Thanks.  In another post, I will go into greater depth when it comes to Assimilation and what it entails; going deeper not wider.


Discipleship

“Salvation occurs in a moment, but discipleship takes a lifetime.” – Pastor Mark Driscoll

Have you ever played a game of “Simon says” or “Follow the Leader”?  Ever noticed as kids we are determined to “follow” so well that we win the game?  Similarly, I believe Jesus also wants us to win as we follow Him not as a game but as a matter of our spiritual growth and eternal destiny. 

Jesus called out to them, “Come, follow me, and I will show you how to fish for people!”  And they left their nets at once and followed him.  Matthew 4:19 - 20 (NLT).  I am sure to Peter and Andrew, this perhaps was not a strange question.  As fishermen they were very familiar with the act of fishing after all that was their heritage.  Enter Jesus via heaven, who comes and gives them an alternative, continue to fish or follow me and he could show you how to fish for people.  This offer was so appealing that the men had to follow him.  Now, have you every asked why did they do that; left a presumably successful business to follow a Rabbi from Galilee?  Historically, to be personally “called” to be the follower of a Jewish Rabbi was seen as great honour.  Therefore, this may have played a great part in the decision processes of Peter and Andrew.  Yet, I would like to think the great “why” would be because the Son of God summoned them.  The mere fact that Jesus took the time to come look for them would be a great privilege to partner with Jesus in His mission.   In a nutshell, to be a disciple would mean to be willing to leave our routine pursuits in order to partner with Jesus in His mission to the world.  Similarly, Jesus is still calling many of us to be followers. 

A disciple then is a follower of Jesus.  The original word sounds similar to martyr, one who willingly lays down their life for another.  This leaves us with the assumption that a disciple is a person who is willing to sacrifice their own will for that of Christ.  The good news though, is that Jesus has already done it all.  So then how do we live a life of discipleship?
  •      Sacrifice one’s will – We must be willing to deny our will and take up God’s will (Luke 9:23)
  •      Study the word of God – It is the Word of God that guides us on the Path to follow (Psalm 119:105)
  •      Share the gospel – as followers who are growing and maturing in Christ our jobs is not to be selfish but to help others to do the same thing.  It is called the Great Commission. (Matthew 28:19)


Living a life discipleship is not easy because the hardest thing that one can do is to tell yourself No.  Yet, the comfort we have is that we are not doing it alone.  Jesus has given us the Holy Spirit to help us, as well as our community of faith here at Bahamas Harvest Church.

Quick Tip: DO NOT QUIT.  The world is already full of too many quitters.  One of the root words for Discipleship is “discipline”.  Disciples are disciplined.  (1Corinthians 9: 27)  

So follow me on twitter @bjornjb.  Thanks.

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