A Church Without Disciples Is A Club- That might sound harsh in a “live and let live” world. Your church can have an amazing pastor, terrific worship, and the best coffee in the galaxy. If you’re not making disciples you’re attending a Christian clubhouse. A motorcycle club has jackets. Your church has t-shirts. Churches, just like civic organizations and do a multitude of things to bring people together. I see pumpkin patches, carnivals, fundraisers, and well… You get it. The real test of a church is how well they disciple people.
This version is a little wordy but the extra detail helps in this case.
Matthew 28:19 The Message (MSG)
18-20 Jesus, undeterred, went right ahead and gave his charge: “God authorized and commanded me to commission you: Go out and train everyone you meet, far and near, in this way of life, marking them by baptism in the threefold name: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Then instruct them in the practice of all I have commanded you. I’ll be with you as you do this, day after day after day, right up to the end of the age.”
Recently my wife and I were discussing that some churches still expect people to clean up their act before they begin a relationship with Jesus. How do churches like that make disciples? I imagine it’s rather difficult. Other churches have a “check your baggage at the door” mentality. You can come broken if you want… Just let us know when God fixes everything so you can give a testimony. I won’t go on with other examples. If you’ve been a Christian for long you have your own experiences you can draw upon.
So, what does a church that makes disciples look like? Well here are some of my ideas:
- Small groups. You can’t make disciples with Sunday morning sermons.
- Tell the truth. You have to find a way to combine 1 Corinthians 13 with the “Hard sayings of Jesus”.
- Do you minister to those who have needs, but can give nothing in return? Remember the poor, the prisoners, the sick , and the dying. (My Paraphrase)
The good news is that many churches are jumping on the bandwagon of discipleship. This is one bandwagon I’m a fan of.