Who Are We? [The Re-branding of Discipleship] E

A disciple is crucified. And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.[a]The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Mt 10:38–39). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles. Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit a man […]

Who Are We? [The Re-branding of Discipleship] D

Discipleship is supernatural. I once saw a little sticker that still makes me laugh when I think of it. “The two great facts of life: 1) There is a God. 2) You are not Him.” There is a difference between man and God, a vast contrast between the methods of human ingenuity and the work of the Holy Spirit. Coaching a softball team is human and natural. Discipling Christians is miraculous and spiritual. The task of discipleship requires a miracle. The Apostle Paul contrasts the natural flesh[a]Flesh is a synonym for carnal nature, sinful nature, old nature, natural man. […]

Who Are We? [The Re-branding of Discipleship] C

KOINONIA The biblical words for fellowship and communion are identical and indicate a “commonness” or “community.” Every believer is a participant in a larger, much larger, organism. There are characteristics and functions that all believers share in common. It is interesting that the New Testament shows fellowship happening in conjunction with sharing a meal. Never underestimate the value of sitting down together to share bread and share your life. This seems to work in smaller church groups, but large groups seem to succeed at providing great banquets and buffet lines, but if they only provide surface relationships and fail […]

Who Are We? [The Re-branding of Discipleship] B

The Disappearance of Disciple The word “disciple” is not used after the first five books of the New Testament. The followers of Jesus are not called “disciples” outside of the Gospels and Acts. Twenty-one New Testament books don’t use the title “disciple.” Twenty-two books don’t use the verb “disciple” or “make disciples.” I would think that after the Great Commission (“Go and make disciples”) that the Apostles would have emphasized that specific word. We sure like that word today. We keep writing books about disciple-making. Churches keep studying how to be a disciple and how to disciple disciples. If […]

Who Are We? [The Re-branding of Discipleship] A

“And in Antioch the disciples were first called Christians.” [a]The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Ac 11:26). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles. We call ourselves “Christians.” Yet, it is a word that is cited only three times in the entire Bible. [b]Χριστιανός – Acts 11:26; Acts 26:28; 1st Peter 4:16. The word “disciple” is used 267 times in the New Testament, a significantly more frequent usage than the three uses of the word “Christian.” One verse uses both words, “And in Antioch the disciples were first called Christians.” A new word was created at Antioch as a label for […]