Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:19–20).
One of the great, exciting, and critical works the church is called to, specifically in the Great Commission, is the work of making disciples. This important calling is directed to every believer in the world.
It is clearly one of the highest priorities of the church in all of life.
What is a disciple? A disciple is a learner and follower of Christ. Actually, there are many other ways to explain and define what a disciple is, but this phrase is very accurate and to the point.
Each one of us is called to be a disciple. And we are each called to make disciples. Obviously, the first person you disciple after you are born again is - yourself.
As you journey on the road of life as a follower of Christ, our disciple-making definitely needs to start with “me.” How can you or I help others to learn to follow Christ if we are not living a life of following Him ourselves? So, I need to start with – myself.
Understand clearly, that the work of discipleship involves both evangelism – the sharing of the gospel of Jesus Christ, and then helping believers to grow up in their faith as well.
Evangelism is where discipleship starts.
And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household” (Acts 16:31).
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16).
So, what does the work of disciple-making consist of? What are the “building blocks” of discipleship?
You could say that the essence of being a disciple can be summed up in three letters: PRO.
- P: Prayer “Pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17). Building a strong daily and consistent prayer life is very important for all believers.
- R: Reading and meditating on the Word of God “Your Word is a Lamp to my feet and a Light to my path” (Psalm 119:105). Every believer is called to be a student of the Word of God. A good habit to start is to read at least three chapters in the Word every day. It could be the same chapter read and meditated on three times or it might be three different chapters. And parents are wise to have each of their children to read three chapters out loud to them every day.
- O: Obedience “But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves” (James 1:22). We are called to learn the Word of God in order to obey and live it. Truth is always meant to be applied.
One could basically sum up the life of a disciple with these three basic aspects of a believer’s life. Every area of our lives as followers of Christ could fall into one of these three areas.
May we each seek to be committed to adding these “building blocks” of the faith to our lives as followers of Christ.
There are many things and tasks in our lives that we as believers can busy ourselves doing. Yet, the reality is that many things some believers do are a big waste of time.
There are many ways to spend our lives that, in the economy of life and time, amount to basically nothing.
But when we hear the Word of God and obey it, we step into the eternal purposes of God.
God’s Word clearly tells us “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you” (Matthew 6:33).
The great work of being a disciple of Christ and making disciples produces fruit that is eternal.
It’s extremely important that we as believers make seeking God ourselves a top priority. Encouraging others in their faith is crucial as well.
So daily, let’s redeem the time. Let’s not waste our time. Wasted time is wasted life. “[M]aking the best use of the time, because the days are evil” (Ephesians 5:16).
Let’s make it a goal to be very clear about what some of the basic building blocks of discipleship are as we carry out this important calling.
Know too, that without question, there needs to be an urgency about the work of making disciples. Every day, many people are leaving this world in death. And too many have left – without knowing Christ.
As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace (1Peter 4:10).
Let’s faithfully be about our Father’s business now, today, and every day.
Every day is important. Every day counts.