What is a disciple?
Jesus’ directive : “Go, and make disciples of all nations.”
a disciple: one who is learning to live and love like Jesus and helps others to do the same
the disciple-making process: helping people everywhere to live and love like Jesus by imparting God’s truth through authentic relationships wherever life happens
So what do these definitions look life in real life?
How do they happen?
It’s really quite simple, which is probably why neither Jesus nor his disciples wrote a discipleship manual to describe the process. You do it by imparting God’s truth through authentic relationships wherever life happens.
To put it even more simply, it’s truth and relationship in the context of life.
- Love God’s truth supremely.
- Love people sacrificially.
- Connect those two pieces wherever life happens: the workplace, a living room, coffee shop, backyard, or bus stop.
Scripture tells us that faith is meant to be reproduced and passed on even to the fourth generation — through truth, relationship and life:
“[God] decreed statutes for Jacob and established the law in Israel, which he commanded our ancestors to teach their children, so the next generation would know them, even the children yet to be born, and they in turn would tell their children” (Psalm 78:5-6, NIV).
“And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable people who will also be qualified to teach others” (2 Timothy 2:2, NIV).
“Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up” (Deuteronomy 6:4-7, NIV).
Here’s how you can do that today, right where you are: Love God and His Word supremely, and then pour that out of your life through authentic relationships in the context of everyday life.
Check out these disciple-making resources:
- How do you teach kids about making disciples? Every Job for Jesus is a fun coloring book teaching children how different jobs can be used to show God’s love to others. Download free or order.
- The unreached are at our doorstep. What does it look like to disciple internationals where you live? Six practitioners serving the unreached in their cities shared their thoughts at the 2014 Pastors’ Forums. Read the summary.
- “What is discipleship?” Five leaders tackled this question at the 2013 Pastors’ Forum in Kansas City. Watch the videos.