Friday, January 14, 2005

Self-Starting Discipleship

2 Timothy 2v2 - Paul teaches Timothy to teach what Paul has taught Timothy (the gospel) to people who will be able to teach others.... Paul has in mind an unending chain of disciple makers... the challenge then I'm finding for ministry is to disciple people with the expectation and sufficient investment that they can go on to disciple others.

When I struggle with this, I remember a story an old missionary re-counted to me. He taught the gospel to an illiterate people, he preached a message to them and returned a month later. One of the congregation he'd preached to was there, and he said - "you're preaching this week". To which the man said, "I don't know what to say". The missionary then said, "do you remember what I preached before". The man said "no". And so the missionary told him again, and said - now preach that.

We have an amazing message, God's good news about Jesus death... we just need to get telling people...


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  4. How is it best to continue this chain of disciple makers when people simply wont listen? How do Christians unearth the core of the gospels without appearing to "bible bash"?

    To us the Good News is awsome, but to the world its a restriction on their liberty, how do we approach people in a non confronting way, tell them about Jesus and then allow them to grow without being imposing or judging.

    Its difficult, all we can do is pray that God will soften their hearts, for if their hearts choose not to see the truth then they are forever blind, no matter how much the gospel is told to them.

    Furthermore how do we make those first steps and how do we break this barrier of Christianity being so threatning on everyones life. Ive heard many comments say that we are "religious bullies"... are we? if so, how do we change and if not how do we stop this illusion?

    (Sorry about the posts before being deleted... my PC died on my and it posted this same comment 3 times!!!)

  5. The reality is that the world is dead and blind to God's wisdom - it just doesn't get it.

    But nonetheless God tells us that his Word transforms lives (2 Corinthians 3v18) and that we should then speak it without distortion and God will turn on the lights so that people can see the glory of God in the face of Christ (2 Corinthians 4v1-6).

    But how do we get them to listen at all? I guess a starting point is to get Christianity into the marketplace, into the normal day to day of life and out of the holy-huddles (we need to huddle because we need to have our vision again filled with the anthems of heaven but that has to be with the mindset of going out into the world afterwards!)

    Developing for ourselves a thoroughly Biblical worldview, seeking to understand the way in which those around us view the world and challenging them as the two worldviews rub up against each other... that however is going to be far from easy or quick.

    Meltdown - blogged previously - is a guide towards doing this.