Fulfilling the Great Commission by raising Christ-centred disciples to plant vibrant, biblical churches in our cities and countries all over the world

DISCIPLESHIP – PARTNERSHIP FOR THE FUTURE By Ps Joshua Chee

I just finished reading an article about churches in decline. The stark truth for the church is that it is not characterised by buildings, programs or the latest fad, but by God and His people. Churches grow and decline not because of the lack of a building, programs or being behind the latest trends; they grow and decline because of its people.
 
The key thought here: God is building His church through His people!He will build His church; the challenge is whether people will join in partnership with Him.One of keys of partnership with God is in Matthew 28:18-20:

“I have been given complete authority in heaven and on earth. 19Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. 20Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (NLT version)
 
 

Discipleship is prescribed as one of the key elements of the Great Commission. Discipleship will also shape the legacy of the church. We are not going to leave behind our buildings or programs, but generations of God-loving, God-fearing followers. The early church did not have many fancy programs or gadgets to aid growth; what they had was the model that Jesus left behind and that was discipleship. God is looking for partners in His church today.

How can we partner with God?

Partnership to disciple spiritual offspring:

The call to make disciples has to start within the church. Churches grow stronger as we learn to disciple individuals towards God. The size of the church does not entirely reflect the strength of the church. Good discipleship on the other hand helps in strengthening the church.

What are some indications of good discipleship?

1. Wholehearted followership

Matthew 16:24 Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.”

The spiritual depth within a disciple is determined by the level of surrender of one’s life to Christ.

2. Steadfast obedience

John 8:31 31Jesus said to the people£ who believed in him, “You are truly my disciples if you keep obeying my teachings. 32And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (NLT version)

One can claim to surrender, yet it is steadfast obedience to the Word that will determine the path we walk with God.

3. Displaying Fruitfulness

John 15:8 This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.The above list is not exhaustive. Yet it comprises the crucial ingredients for us if we want to grow in discipleship. The one who desires to partner with God in discipleship will need to learn to apply these ingredients in his/her life first as a disciple.Partnership to disciple natural offspring:

There is a responsibility for us to disciple our natural offspring too. The fear is that parents are too caught up in their career advancement and leave it to the childcare centres, schools and friends to aid our child’s growth. The abovementioned can be good influences yet parents cannot leave it to them alone. As a parent myself, I understand more the value of good parenthood and though not perfect, aim to be the best I can be to disciple my kid(s).

Proverbs 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it. (NKJV)

Ephesians 6:4 Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord
May this bless you as we aspire to be a church that fulfils His Great Commission.