What’s a Disciple?
A disciple is a follower of Christ who hears, obeys, and shares the Good News with others, then trains others to do the same. Put another way, a disciple loves God, loves people, and makes disciples.
Jesus Expected Us to Multiply: The Early Church Obeyed
In Matthew’s version of the Great Commission (Matthew 28:18-20), Jesus told us to make disciples of all nations. There is no room for error. What’s more, the early church clearly understood Christ’s instructions and soon began implementing them. In fact, by the end of the second chapter of Acts, God is already adding new disciples to the church daily (Acts 2:47).
Interestingly, as persecution broke out, it didn’t stifle Kingdom growth. It just amplified it. Luke was astounded. From his roots as a critical investigative reporter, he saw growth out of control. The early Church soon went from addition to rapid multiplication. Now that is what we call more disciples.
All of this should come as no surprise. If we truly believe in a literal place of eternal punishment for those who don’t know Jesus (2 Thess. 1:8-9), then it stands to reason that loving Christians would do everything they can to get the message out as quickly as possible to save as many as possible. How much would we have to hate non-believers to keep the truth a secret — especially when we know how to retell it? The fact that early Christian leaders (like Paul, Timothy, and Barnabas) went to such lengths to share faith should tell us something about the priority of learning and doing evangelism as a daily part of our Christian walk.
The Task Is Not Complete
Is the task of making disciples of all nations outdated? Exactly the opposite. The world needs hope and peace now more than ever. According to JoshuaProject.net, more than 40% of the world’s population still lives in a tribe, caste, or kindred that would be described as “unreached.” That’s way over 3 billion people. As of December, 2021, over 1/3 of the population in the USA do not claim any affiliation with any religion at all (according to a study by Pew cited https://www.pewforum.org/2021/12/14/about-three-in-ten-u-s-adults-are-now-religiously-unaffiliated/)
Caring for the One
In Luke 15, Jesus tells the story of the shepherd who left the 99 remaining sheep in his flock of 100, all in hopes of finding the one lost lamb. How much the more, with 2.9 BILLION lost souls on the planet today, should we make it a priority to “leave the 99” in the high country and mobilize every last resource available for the sake of the last, the least, and the lost—the most desperate living in the greatest darkness in the most imminent danger.
Add to God’s Glory
There’s another reason for making more disciples that goes beyond the imminent justice of God. And that is, the glory of God. Ultimately, it’s not about us. It’s about Christ and His Kingdom. Adding to that Kingdom will, in turn, add to His glory. And that is the ultimate goal of the church anyway.
The Workers are Few
In view of all the above, there’s no time to waste. If we could discover an approach that might accelerate good Kingdom growth, should we not embrace it? In Matthew 9:37, Jesus concluded, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.” Today, will you join us in prayer for the harvest?
Recommended Action Steps:
1) Decide to make it a priority to get involved in expanding Christ’s Kingdom, both around the block and around the world. Watch the background video and answer the questions at https://zume.training/pace-of-multiplication-matters/
2) Determine that you will no longer allow yourself the luxury of being a mere “consumer” of Christianity. Determine to become a producer. Watch the video and answer the questions at https://zume.training/consumer-vs-producer-lifestyle/
3) Begin sweeping more scripture into your life using a pattern like SOAPS to help you. Watch this for more: https://zume.training/soaps-bible-reading/